Spurs coach Gregg Popovich calls out Lonnie Walker IV for horrible performance after loss to Clippers
San Antonio Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich is not a fan of sugarcoating things.
Spurs sophomore guard Lonnie Walker IV learned that the hard way on Thursday, earning the ire of his head coach following the Spurs’ 103-97 loss to the Los Angeles Clippers at Staples Center.
Pop lambasted the 20-year-old guard out of the University of Miami, claiming he played “horribly” in the team’s first loss of the season and expressing a need for a better effort:
“Well, I expect better effort, better awareness and a better attempt to take advantage of the minutes that he gets. I thought he was non-competitive,” he said of Walker, per Tom Orsborn of the San Antonio Express-News.
It is worth noting that Walker saw limited playing time versus the Clippers, logging in just five minutes, though that may have been because of his supposed poor effort. He missed his only attempt from the 3-point area and grabbed two rebounds.
Some Twitter users even pointed out that shooting guard Marco Belinelli fared worse, scoring just two points on 1-of-6 shooting in 18 minutes of action, while LaMarcus Aldridge put up five points and five boards in 36 minutes.
After being drafted by the Spurs 18th overall last year, Walker only saw the floor 17 times in his first season. He played a total of 10 minutes in the Spurs’ first four games, getting two DNPs in the process.
Pop, meanwhile, has a reputation for calling out his underperforming players in a bid to lit a fire under them. The Spurs have had success turning late first-round picks Dejounte Murray and Derrick White into serviceable players, while the undrafted Bryn Forbes has also become an integral part of Popovich’s rotation.