Steve Kerr isn’t yet back to being the unreserved head coach of the Golden State Warriors, but he’s close.
Closer than ever, in fact.
It was announced prior to the start of the 2015-16 season that Kerr would be taking an indefinite leave of absence to recover from complications that followed offseason back surgery. Though his absence hasn’t prevented the Warriors from jumping out to the best start in NBA history, it has been a topic of discussion, with many at one point wondering whether Kerr would return this season at all.
Well, Steve Kerr plans to take a big step toward returning this season, perhaps even before 2015 is out, per Rusty Simmons of the San Francisco Chronicle:
Kerr said he's planning to travel with the team to Dallas and Houston after the holidays.
— Rusty Simmons (@Rusty_SFChron) December 22, 2015
This appears to jibe with the optimistic sentiments recently delivered by Harrison Barnes and Klay Thompson, which are brought to us by the Bay Area News Group’s Diamond Leung:
Klay Thompson: "We feel like Steve (Kerr) is back." Harrison Barnes to 95.7 The Game on Kerr at practice: "He’s running ‘em."
— Diamond Leung (@diamond83) December 18, 2015
The Warriors are fortunate enough to be in a position that doesn’t demand Kerr tether himself to any sort of decided timeline. Associate head coach Luke Walton is doing a fine job of steering the ship, and Kerr’s absence, irrespective of how long it lasts, doesn’t look like it’ll have any adverse long-term ramifications.
It’s nonetheless encouraging that he’s ostensibly nearing a return. It implies that he’s healthy, that he’s fine.
Also, the Warriors need someone to frown and shake their head tongue-in-cheek whenever Stephen Curry jacks/makes an inexplicable shot attempt.