Steve Kerr says Andre Iguodala is most painful personnel loss in his 5 years with Golden State
The Golden State Warriors managed to salvage something in the wake of Kevin Durant’s departure, but the acquisition of D’Angelo Russell didn’t come without its share of carnage after the sign-and-trade. The Warriors were forced to part ways with veteran forward Andre Iguodala, a leader that paved the way for what the team has been during the past five seasons and Steve Kerr’s most painful loss of his five-year tenure as coach.
“That was the most painful loss in terms of a personnel move that I’ve felt as a coach in my five years,” Kerr told The Warriors Insider Podcast. “Andre really embodied everything I tried to teach to our players in terms of the culture, the unselfishness, the sacrifice.”
Iguodala was notably moved to the bench in Kerr’s first year as coach, an event that most viewed as graceful, but tough to swallow nonetheless. The veteran had been a starter his entire career, even starting all 63 games he played with the team under Mark Jackson in his first season with the team (2013-14).
Yet his willingness to buy into a new coach’s vision, especially one with no NBA experience, was a leap of faith which would soon be rewarded.
Iguodala started in none of the 77 games he played in during his first season under Kerr, though he did log the final three starts during the NBA Finals in 2015, which eventually earned him Finals MVP honors — a testament to his sacrifice and his game-changing defense on LeBron James.
Kerr could always point to Iguodala as the quintessential example for unselfishness and all-for-the-team attitude, but the 35-year-old will have to finish his career elsewhere after being traded to the Memphis Grizzlies earlier this month.