Warriors head coach Steve Kerr will travel with the team to San Antonio for Games 3 and 4 of the Western Conference finals, team general manager Bob Myers said on a local radio show on Wednesday.
Kerr isn’t yet ready to get back to the team’s bench for games, but “he’s going to San Antonio,” Myers told 95.7 The Game. Myers said it was Kerr’s decision.
Myers also said that Kerr’s condition is improving. “He’s better than he was,” Golden State’s GM said. “He’s around; that’s better. He wasn’t around; that was worse. … We were dealing with him not being around. The more he’s around, the better.”
Kerr has ceded coaching duties to assistant Mike Brown while he deals with pain stemming from a 2015 back surgery. The reigning NBA coach of the year has been on an indefinite leave of absence ever since Game 2 of Golden State’s first-round playoff series against the Portland Trail Blazers, and did not travel with the team to Utah for the away leg of his team’s second-round series. Similar complications forced him to miss the first 43 games of the 2015-16 season.
Kerr flew to North Carolina for a spinal cord leak procedure at Duke University’s medical center two weeks ago, and has seemingly been on the mend, even if only gradually, since. He attended Games 1 and 2 of the conference finals at Oracle Arena in Oakland, watched on a TV away from the court, and addressed the team at halftime of both:
— NBA (@NBA) May 14, 2017
— NBA (@NBA) May 17, 2017
It is unclear if Kerr will coach the team in San Antonio, or at all during this series, or even the rest of this year’s playoffs. But he has been with the team on off days as well as on game days, which is a great sign.
“He’s doing what he can,” Myers said on the radio show. “He’s talking to the players. … It’s all encouraging. I’m not going to sit here and say he’s over any kind of hump. He wouldn’t say that … [but] the more he’s around, the better we are.”
The Warriors still haven’t lost without Kerr in the playoffs, but his presence is a major bonus for a team and a coaching staff that have been so in tune with each other throughout the year.
The Warriors and Spurs will tip off in San Antonio on Saturday at 9 p.m. ET after three days of rest. Kerr and the team will travel on Thursday.