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How Steve Kerr nearly didn’t become the head coach of the Golden State Warriors in 2014

Kerr very nearly ended up joining the Knicks rather than the Warriors back in 2014
Steve Kerr

Steve Kerr

The Golden State Warriors haven't had a great start to the 2022-23 season, as they have stumbled out of the gate to a 3-5 record. Still, they have a very talented team and are the defending champs after winning the 2022 NBA Finals. Chances are the Warriors will figure things out and rebound from their slow start to the season, considering legendary coach Steve Kerr is leading the way.

Kerr almost didn't become the Warriors head coach back in 2014

Over the Warriors' recent dynastic run, Kerr has played a big role in the team's success. Kerr took over in 2014 and quickly turned the Warriors into a dynasty. He's led Golden State to four titles in the past eight seasons and has helped revolutionize the NBA by creating an offense that is powered by an ability to take and make three-point shots at a high level.

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Kerr taking over in 2014 was a huge reason for the Warriors' success, but it nearly didn't happen. Initially, Stan Van Gundy was Golden State's top target when they were searching for Mark Jackson's replacement, and Kerr was billed as the favorite to land the New York Knicks job. That could have very well resulted in the past few seasons of the Warriors' history looking very different.

"Despite strong interest from the Golden State Warriors, who sources say had established Van Gundy as their top target to succeed the ousted Mark Jackson, Detroit managed to trump Van Gundy's hometown team with the offer of personnel control on top of coaching duties. Sources indicated earlier Tuesday that the Warriors were resigned to Van Gundy accepting Detroit's substantial offer, which prompted Golden State officials to immediately head to Oklahoma City to make one last attempt to convince Steve Kerr to walk away from his expected deal to coach the New York Knicks. But sources told on Tuesday night that, despite the Warriors' last-ditch press, negotiations between Kerr and the Knicks have been in "the final stages" for more than a week, with one source close to the talks saying he'd be "shocked" if the TNT broadcaster didn't wind up as the first coach hired by new Knicks president Phil Jackson." - Marc Stein, ESPN

Things would have looked very different in the NBA had Kerr not taken the Warriors' job

As seen here, Kerr wasn't the Warriors' top target and was only considered for the job because Van Gundy took the job with the Detroit Pistons rather than the Warriors. Kerr was basically signed and sealed to join the Knicks instead, but he ended up joining the Warriors instead, and the rest is history.

It's safe to say that the NBA would be very different had Kerr not made this call to go back on the Knicks and join the Warriors. The Warriors' offense as we know it, and the rise of Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson, may not have happened had Kerr not taken the job. You could say the same thing if someone like Van Gundy joined Golden State rather than Kerr.

You often need a little bit of luck to succeed in professional sports, and while it seemed very unlikely that Kerr would be the Warriors' coach at a point in time back in 2014, it ended up leading to the birth of the most recent dynasty in the NBA. And even though the Warriors have struggled out of the gate this season, it wouldn't be wise to count out Kerr in his efforts to turn things around as their campaign progresses.

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