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March 26, 2021

Bob Myers

San Francisco, California, USA

Media Conference

Q. Bob, how would you characterize the interest that other teams showed in Kelly Oubre?

BOB MYERS: High level. He's a good player. Obviously people read what you say and your peers, and so I think a lot of people thought he might be available, but we value him, too, as evidenced by not trading him. I know it was mentioned, which is totally fine; that's the NBA we live in.

A lot of players are mentioned, and it's harder probably on them. You can tell a player to take it as a compliment, but it's not me or you that's name is being mentioned as far as moving cities and jobs, but he handled it very well, and like I said, I think our actions spoke to how we view him.

Q. Is the goal to retain him in free agency this summer and try to keep him in your plans moving forward?

BOB MYERS: Yeah, look, the first goal is to win the game tonight and then try to do well the rest of the season and then evaluate everything after that.

Kelly has done a great job. He's been kind of rumored since he showed up a little bit, are we going to keep him, are we not going to keep him, and he's done a good job of just playing basketball. Those are conversations we'll have. I can't per the rules promise anything, but we like Kelly and we'd like to be able to see him in our future plans, but that's four, five, six months away and we'll see what happens with us, and obviously it takes two, so that decision will be made down the line.

Q. What would factor into making that decision overall this off-season?

BOB MYERS: Well, having been an agent on the other side, most of the factors is what the player wants, what the team wants. Those two parties have to agree, financially, vision-wise, how we finish, how he finishes. This isn't the time for me to sit him down and say what do you want or talk to his agent about what his expectations are, this is a time for Kelly to focus on playing basketball, which he's done a very good job of, and do the best you can. It's a situation like every free agency is where the two sides have to agree on many things, but like I say, that's a conversation that will take place later.

Q. What are you planning on doing with those two open roster spots? Is it an immediate thing you want to figure out or just see how it plays out?

BOB MYERS: Well, look, if something great comes along immediately, we would do that, but right now today there's nothing immediate that we're doing.

It'll -- who's the buyout players, we have a little more flexibility as far as roster spots go, so we'll look at all of it. We looked at our player over in Australia; we talked about potential buyout guys. We don't know who's going to get bought out yet, but internally we thought what if this guy gets bought out or that guy. We have the DPE, which is a little bit more money than the minimum to spend if we wanted to go after somebody.

So we'll see. We have some players on our roster we could convert, and like I said, it's been less than -- well, just about 24 hours since the deadline passed, but we will look at those things and make a decision I think in the next week or so.

Q. How realistic of a possibility is it bringing Jessup over from Australia this season?

BOB MYERS: Yeah, I don't know. We talked about that a little bit yesterday. Again, a lot of things would have to align, and not having talked to him or his agent personally, needing to know what they want, and also considering his development. Is he going to continue to develop better there or here? It's a question, and it's something you put up on the white board and everybody gets a say in it, but clearly his representation, he would, and then you make the best call. But it's one of the things we're looking at. It's not the only thing, it's one of many things. We'll get clarity on that, like I said, in the next couple weeks.

Q. What would be the benefit of potentially calling up Juan or Nico to the 15-man roster considering that you guys don't really have those limitations on their contracts anymore?

BOB MYERS: Potentially secure a long-term deal for one of them like we did with Damion Lee, like we've done with a few other guys, someone who works for them and us. That would be the motivation with something like that.

Also reward some of the guys, and it's a statement towards our future plans. But without having a ton of time to see what the options are, those are certainly one of them, and like I said, we'll look at that and make the best decision in the next couple weeks.

Q. I know the plan is always to get better, but heading into the trade deadline, was there any specific vision you guys had, like hey, we want to get better this year and try to make a push, or hey, we want to make a move so we can position ourselves this summer to make a splash? Was there a specific vision you guys had going into the deadline?

BOB MYERS: Yeah, every deadline you have some kind of goal or vision, and I would say the easy answer would be it's both short and long-term success.

It's a hard balance to strike, and that's what we're trying to strike this year. In previous deadlines it was, let's push it all in and try to win a championship, which in many instances meant nothing. We felt like we had enough to do it. This is a little bit different with Klay out. We're trying to figure out what we have and evaluate what we are, not do anything that would hinder us in the future, but look to the future, as well.

So it's a lot of different things that we run in parallel, and at the end of the deadline you basically are confronted with all these proposals and you do what you think is best in the moment. And I don't want to get into what could have happened or what should have happened, but you do explore a lot of different things. That's my job. That's the job of every general manager.

But at the deadline for us, we wanted to keep this crew together, see what they could do, but at the same time look towards the future and see if we could better ourselves there, as well. That's I think every team's goal, but I do think realistically everybody is on a little bit of a different timeline.

Q. What have you thought about the development of James to this point, and what more do you want to see over the next few months?

BOB MYERS: Yeah, I think when you think about James having kind of been around some young players here with a young Klay, a young Draymond, I try to refer back to kind of everybody's evolution to what they've become, and the thing I kind of -- and on the agent side, watching some pretty great young players, high picks, even picks that weren't high become this great version of themselves, the thing I do, which you're entitled -- everybody is entitled to evaluate whoever they want I believe that someone said to me that played in the NBA, everybody has to run their own race, and I fall back on that. That means starts and stops, that means ups and downs, especially as a rookie.

And so you know, I look, there's a lot of things I like, a lot of things that I've seen that I really like. There's some things he clearly needs to work on. There's some things that we can do to help him. There's some things he can do to help himself, and that's the partnership that you have with a player like that. It's their buy-in, it's our commitment, it's all of the above.

And then it culminates, and when it culminates, it's different for everybody. We all want it now. I want it now. I'm sure James wants it now. Very few players get it right away. Some get it right away, and that's kind of their ceiling.

So we'll see. Like I've said before when asked about him and even when he was drafted, it's going to be a road and he's going to have to be an active participant in it, and the good news is he is. He loves basketball, he cares. You can see it in his body language. He's got to learn how much to care and how to kind of move past some of the mistakes.

But he's a really wonderful kid. He wants it, and that's what you bank on with someone like that with that kind of raw talent, that they'll put the work in, and he does put the work in, and eventually that reveals itself consistently.

The progression for him will be consistent success. That's the mark of a really, really good player, and that's what he's striving for and we're striving for for him.

Q. How difficult are you guys finding it organizationally kind of in this in-between period, kind of trying to fuse two eras? You have the superstar age at 33 and James at 19; how tough a balance is that?

BOB MYERS: Yeah, well, it's tough, but for those of you that covered us a lot, we had it when Mark was here earlier, it was a young Klay, it was watching him make mistakes. He's a wonderful player, and we joked the other day, some of us that were here, about his progress to becoming what he became. It's hard, but it's the NBA, and I don't think anybody is going to have any empathy for myself or the Warriors as far as the talent and personnel we've had and the success we've had. It's a challenge, but it's no different than the challenge many teams face, and we have to meet that head on.

Again, I honestly think the biggest challenge is -- and I don't know how to say this without -- I guess it would sound like an excuse, it's not an excuse -- the biggest challenge would be Klay's absence. It doesn't matter. I'm not going to harp on that because it doesn't matter.

But we're moving through all of it. Doesn't mean it's easy, but that's what we're doing.

Q. On a little bit different note, what did you think seeing 12 members of the organization getting vaccinated the other day?

BOB MYERS: Look, it's per the CDC and state guidelines, and so I'm not going to stand in the way of anything like that. It's an individual choice, and a lot of people -- a lot of our players were wanting to get vaccinated. They're clearly out and about in the world in their own way, maybe more than others, and maybe everybody has their own personal beliefs.

But like I say, they followed all the appropriate guidelines, and like I say, that's their own individual choice.

Q. What's it been like watching the evolution of Jordan Poole from his first beginning of his rookie year to where he is now?

BOB MYERS: It's been nice. I mean, you like to see hard work pay off. We have this system called NOAH, which for those of you really into the analytics, it's a system where it tracks your shooting, time spent in the gym, in a simple way, at least shooting threes and watching your arc, and obviously Steph kind of breaks the model with his consistency of arc and left-to-right accuracy and depth of shot, which shouldn't be surprising to any of you. But Jordan put in a ton, a ton of time on this.

You like stories like that to tell. It's a good story to tell. For him, it's a good success story. But I don't think Jordan thinks he's kind of done it or made it. Certainly he's got more to do and more work to put in, but it's nice. It's good to see hard work pay off.

Q. As you were going through last season and you were hearing I'm sure the whispers about people questioning Jordan in the selection, what was crossing your mind as that was happening in real time?

BOB MYERS: Well, you know, we hear that -- we're human beings that hear criticism all the time. Some of it's deserved, certainly. You're not going to get everything right. But I guess we have a little bit deeper lens. It's not fair to expect you or anybody to know how much a guy is working or know how close he is. Especially this year. You don't get to watch practice. Even with a guy like James, harder for you to know. Usually you're at the end of practice watching a guy work out and watching a guy like James make 10, 15 threes in a row. That might give you a little more information than you normally would have.

Same with Jordan. You might watch him and you watch basketball, you've been around the game and you might say, wow, this guy is getting better. You don't have the lens that we have. It doesn't mean it's always going to happen when we want it to happen, but we do see the work, just like anybody you work with, you see the young person putting in the time, and you alone know that.

For us, it's nice. But yeah, we want to do well. We want to pick the right guys. We want to see them succeed. I would say what's changed is their patience level. Even for us, it's not just us, it's society, it's our fans. It's pretty want-it-now deal, which is what -- I think it's more of a pressure on the players than us. They hear it, and they hear that they're being graded.

We're a little older. We've been through kind of the praise and the criticism, but I can't imagine being 20, 21 being told one day I'm great and one day I'm not and one day I'm a bust and one day I'm the next best thing. That might be hard to process.

A little bit like day trading. That's what I call it. It's kind of like day trading whereas I sit back and you kind of buy a stock and you watch it and you hope it's a value or growth, and that's what you do.

Q. With vaccines getting out publicly and the players taking it, how realistic is it that we might get fans in the Chase Center this season?

BOB MYERS: We hope so. We've had conversations with the city. You see it happening around other arenas in other cities. We want to do it safely. It's publicly known that our owner is committed to kind of making it as safe as possible, even to the point of testing.

But we have to follow those guidelines, and the city knows our position, and they have to do what they think is best, too.

But we hope in the near future or at least by the end of the season we have some plan to get fans in. I can't tell you enough how much -- especially for us having the fans we have, how much we miss their just energy, and how much -- if you ever -- if you're a fan or if you ever didn't know your value or if we ever didn't appreciate it, I can tell you from the players -- most importantly the players on down through every organization, we're starving for fans.

I would even take getting booed, I suppose, from a fan. It's not what you want, but you want that passion. You want that energy, and we miss it.

Q. When we talked to Klay he said, I want to be ready on opening day. That might not be the case. 35 minutes a night might not be the case right away. As you make decisions for next season, what do you think are the realistic expectations for Klay?

BOB MYERS: You know, I think we have to find out what they are. I don't know. He's still got to get back on the court and start going. You see everybody has a different race to run as far as their achilles or any injury, recovery.

But he has a focus that I have never seen before. He's got a purpose, and he's attacking the rehab.

I was even looking the other day when he -- I don't know who, Monty or somebody reported his holding Draymond accountable a few weeks ago. We need that leadership. We need him on the court and we need him in the locker room. Steph, Klay and Draymond, those are our leaders. Those are our voices. They're our leaders on the court obviously but they're our leaders off the court, and when you're not playing it's hard to step into that role. So we need his presence. We need his belief that every time we step on the floor he's going to win. Those three guys together have a pretty darned good success rate.

We'll see when he's back. Obviously we won't hold back that information when we have it, whether it's in summer or in the fall or training camp, but I can't answer specifically because we don't even know.

Q. How popular was the Minnesota pick in trade talks, considering where they currently are in the standings?

BOB MYERS: A lot of people -- anytime you can add a pick that potentially might be conveyed to us, any pick in the top 10 is popular because the hardest thing to find and the most coveted thing is a young player on a rookie contract. The priority getting the big max contracts that many of these guys get.

That was asked about quite often, and I think in the way it was asked, you see the value of it. So yeah, like you would probably expect.

Q. How committed are you to basically keeping that pick no matter what, or are you open to moving it for the right move?

BOB MYERS: You know, you've got to be open to anything, but it would take a lot to part with something like that. You don't ever say never. We don't even know if we'll get it. I guess we'll find out at the lottery, whenever that date is set.

Yeah, it has value and the trade has value by itself, but until you and I and everybody will know a ton more when we know what it is or if we get it.

Q. Any word how Draymond feels this morning or early afternoon, and do you have any indication that was related to the vaccine?

BOB MYERS: Yeah, I don't know. Maybe. I don't want to answer for him. I'm sure he'll answer that question for you. I think he's feeling better, but I haven't talked to him today. Everybody came in to test this morning, and I didn't see him. I was talking to our coach.

I haven't heard. I think we'll know more when he shows up, but we're hoping he feels good enough to play. I just can't tell you for sure right now.

Q. Back to the fans, I was curious, will you guys sort of see how it works with baseball? Certainly different, their fans are outdoors, but see how it works at the Giants when fans are coming back in into an outdoor venue? Will you be paying attention to sort of how it works here on both sides of the Bay?

BOB MYERS: Yes. Yeah, we've been paying attention everywhere, but yeah, certainly locally is more of an impact on what we do, and I think our City Council and health officials have weighed in on what's appropriate indoors, what's appropriate outdoors, but they're trying to do it in concert with I think -- because it might all be happening at once, but we also pay attention to indoor events.

We see what's going on in Indianapolis and you see other teams having fans and some teams a certain percentage, some teams others, and we want to get as many as we can as safe as we can. So yeah, certainly how the Giants are doing it, how the A's are doing it, it's all information. So we factor all that in and try to learn from it and use some of it.

THE MODERATOR: Just to interject, we hope to have some guidelines from the state at some point in the next several days or week or so in terms of what you saw they put out guidelines for outdoor venues. We're hoping to get indoor guidelines from the state in the next week or so.

Q. Bob, as a GM, obviously you have a different point of view on this, but you have a coach, and coaches, for job security reasons they want to win games, and yet at the same time, you're trying to develop for the future. Do you sort of have -- do you feel for what a coach like Steve is going through in terms of trying to balance that, trying to win games for good reason and get to the Playoffs versus also trying to develop guys and have enough play through their mistakes and deal with that?

BOB MYERS: Yeah, I sent him that text today. I did. I did. I said, This is tough, man. This is hard. In the same breath we both kind of chuckled that we've seen the other side of the coin, too, with a roster that didn't need much -- obviously every roster needs refining, but one that stood alone pretty well. So we can't complain.

But yeah, I mean, I'm not going to sit here and not have empathy for the balance he's trying to strike. It's not easy. It's a tough one. I want to win, too. I mean, it's not like we want to just see guys develop and not win.

Yeah, it's a really good insight on your part and accurate that -- I appreciate it. Sometimes there's not an easy answer for those questions. But we're not the first organization to try to figure this out.

Not to diminish how difficult it is, which it is, but you look around some organizations where they're not throwing in the towel because they've got too much talent, but recognizing the future requires growth from young players, and to say that's easy isn't fair, isn't accurate. It's a challenge.

But again, so is not having any players or having some great players and trying to figure that out, too.

Q. How have you seen Steph handle that tightrope along those same lines, a year in his prime, trying to get traction in the win column, but what's Steph's understanding of the developmental side, as well?

BOB MYERS: Yeah, Steph has seen -- it's interesting, I think we all look at his recent history, but he has been through -- it wasn't like he just walked into the NBA and everything was perfect for him. Individually, certainly team-wise. So he's got a great grasp of -- an appreciation for what we were, what we are, what he went through with his own injuries and own path to success, and the own questioning of his ability, albeit at a different level.

Even at superstar status there's pressure on a guy like that. There's pressure on him being a leader of a team, when it's great, when it's in the middle, and when it's not so great. It's not something I put in him and take credit for. It's something that he has, and you just watch him walk around.

Again, he was on the sidelines the other day when we were in Memphis and he was kind of jumping up and down. The TV went over to him and he was getting excited for Jordan, and I saw him and I said, gosh, I said, how come you can have so much fun? How do you bring that joy every day? I always tell him, that's such a unique skill to find such pleasure in your work.

He hasn't lost that. Even amidst COVID or last year or this year. He has a great way of seeing the small picture and the big picture.

Q. I just wanted to circle back on something you touched on with Kelly just for clarification's sake. A couple days ago Steve said, we've talked to Kelly, he knows his value, he knows what the situation is here. And then last night I think Anthony asked him have you had any conversations with the Warriors about your future, and he said, no. So from the organization's perspective, have you talked to Kelly at all about what he's looking for and if he's looking to start or his representatives going into whatever may happen in the next few months here?

BOB MYERS: I talked to his agent the other night in person. His dad comes to a lot of games. I'm not going to bother Kelly about whether you're going to start next year or not in the middle of our season, but he knows. That's a better conversation for his representation to have when they want to have it. So we had that conversation privately. So he's informed, and like I said, his focus should be on playing basketball and winning games.

Yeah, I like what he said last night. He should want to start. That's what you should want. Every player should want to start. I represented a lot of guys. I don't know that anybody -- even Iguodala when he was here, I think he probably liked it when Kerr said, hey, I'm going to start you in the Finals. I'm sure he didn't say I want to stay on the bench. But everybody figures it out as you go. Every team has a different roster, every team has different personnel.

We've had some great roster where we probably could have had six or seven starters, and that's a part of professionalism, but I had no problem with players wanting to start.

I'm sure Nico Mannion wants to start every game. That's good. That's what we look for in players.

Q. Are you confident that you'll be able to re-sign him if he really wants to stay and Klay is coming back?

BOB MYERS: Who knows. I don't know. I don't know who's going to start. I don't know who's on the team -- that's a good conversation to have in four or five months based on how we finish, but the good news is nobody has to answer that now. It shouldn't be answered now. We've got a draft to go through. Like I said, with he don't know what pick we have. We don't know what happens there.

As you know, as you cover the NBA, things happen so fast now with your own team, with other teams. There's never been more big moves, small moves, rumors, player movement, player -- good things, difficult things, organizational shifts, pivots, all kinds of stuff.

Looking ahead is something we do do, but you also have to be nimble enough to make changes. Even again, looking ahead to free agency or the draft, there's so many unknowns how we're going to finish this year, but we like him and he's done a great job, and we'll have those conversations when free agency gets here.

Q. What would define success for you the rest of this season? What would you categorize as success?

BOB MYERS: Hopefully we can be a team with -- we need Steph for sure. Missing him is tough. So we need him to play.

And then evaluate -- hopefully have a chance to compete for the Playoffs. Obviously Playoffs mean is do you make it into the play-in, do you make it past the play-in. But I'd like to think we can be in that game. That would be something we would call successful in some components.

But clearly we wouldn't be satisfied. I think this is a group of guys that have won championships, and many people from the organization within it have won championships.

I will tell you when we got here, success was making the Playoffs. On a big-picture level that's what our success was, and we lost in the second round, and we thought that season was unbelievably successful. They're all different. We had five years where success had to be winning the championship. I don't think that's our -- sure, we'd take to that year, but that wouldn't be successful or unsuccessful.

It's having a chance to get into the Playoffs in some capacity and see what happens from there, and like I think Monday at this asked, seeing growth, finding out growth, but again, that's a tough balance to strike.

Q. You've been asked about Steph and Steve, but how about yourself? What has been the most challenging part of your job I guess over the last two years? Obviously you guys have the five-year run. The organization is in a way different position whether it comes to draft picks, even free agents, to now where you guys do have high draft picks, you own other teams, you are developing younger players like James. What has been the biggest adjustment for you and what is the biggest challenge for you in that kind of drastic difference?

BOB MYERS: Yeah, hmm. I think the challenge always is, win or lose, to maintain your culture, maintain your relationship with your players, your owner, your coach, your fans. That's what defines kind of a culture and long-term success. You don't want to lose that. There's probably never been more pressure. Like I said, this isn't anybody's fault. There's just such a scrutiny on everything.

The information -- not information -- everybody is on this call is is unbelievable. Everybody is so good at their jobs. I always use the example when I grew up a Warriors fan I didn't even know who the GM of the team was, and now they're scrutinizing everything, which is fascinating, and you've seen the sport grow, and it's great.

But the challenge is amongst all that is keeping your culture, keeping your competitiveness, keeping your curiosity, keeping an eye on what is the long-term version of success amidst all of it, and so it's a challenge. We never managed -- Steve and I talked today, the amount of people you manage. The hardest thing in the world to do is manage people because we're all different, and that includes players, coaches, my staff, managing up, down.

So that's probably the hardest part of my job is that, and you never really get it perfectly right. There's all the other parts that people know about, trying to pick the right players and trading for them and pay them the right amount, but that's all more external stuff.

Internally you can do all that right and watch your organization kind of deteriorate from within, and that's what I think Steve is so good at and we try to maintain is that part. So that's probably the biggest challenge.

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