Golden State Warriors coach Steve Kerr has hit out a journalist who he claims took him out of context in his report on the NBA coach's appearance on a podcast.
Kerr, the three-time championship coach of the Warriors, had joined The Ringer podcast hosts Logan Murdock and former NBA player Raja Bell to discuss a number of topics, chiefly his time as coach.
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The Warriors have returned to playoff contention after a wasted 2020 campaign which saw the team's stars Steph Curry and Klay Thompson sidelined with injuries and the Western Conference champions plummeting to a 15-50 record.
It marked a remarkable change in fortunes for one of the league's top teams, with matters made worse by Kevin Durant's decision to join the Brooklyn Nets in free agency, which followed his devastating achilles injury in the 2019 NBA Finals.
All of a sudden the team's three best players were either gone or sidelined, with Kerr admitting he enjoyed the subsequent losing season more than the pressure of dealing with season-ending injuries during the Finals run.
“That last year was tough,” Kerr said on the podcast.
“There was a lot going on – some that you know about and some that you don’t. That was very difficult.”
However Durant, whose exit from the Warriors came on somewhat acrimonious terms, took issue with the quote on Twitter, which he thought implied he was to blame for the Warriors' fall from contention.
"This is hilarious," Durant wrote in response, prompting a lengthy exchange with fans in which he insisted he would always 'defend my honour'.
Warriors coach Steve Kerr addresses NBA controversy
In a press conference before Golden State's matchup with Philadelphia, Kerr made an unprompted statement addressing the controversy, saying he had been taken out of context and describing the Warriors' most recent Finals run as an 'absolute bear'.
“The stress level, two season-ending injuries during the Finals … we had all kinds of stress,” Kerr said.
“If you want to actually get the story accurate, I would encourage you to actually listen to the podcast. It was a terribly unfair shot, completely taking something out of context to the point where people are going to read it and think that was my quote.
“To take that comment and put it into a tweet and send it out into the universe is so irresponsible and damaging. And I’m angry.
"And I know what's going to happen. I know this is going to be taken out into the morning shows and people are going to be talking about it and they're gonna use what they think is a quote that is actually that is something that's completely made up.
"I'm not happy. I think it's wrong. Again, I try to be candid. I try to share everything so that our fans know what our team is going through. What I'm going through. We like to share our story.
"It's a big part of promoting our team. So, this is really concerning for me. It's part of modern media maybe, but it's dead wrong, and I'm upset about it."
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