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June 22, 2021

Bob Myers

San Francisco, California, USA

Media Conference

Q. What was your gut reaction: Could have been worse? Could have been better? But how do you feel about 7 and 14, and the possibilities that come with that for the organization?

BOB MYERS: You know, whatever it was, it was going to be. So feel fine about what it turned out. It would have been okay, I guess -- would loved to have not seen our name at 14. That would have been fun. But Minnesota, that pick being conveyed is great. Top 7 pick is something that's hard to come by.

We'll see what the possibilities are. I don't know what they will be right now. It's ten minutes old. But it's unusual to have those type of good picks in a very good draft.

Q. Would you please coral adding two rookies to this roster and bringing two rookies into training camp next year?

BOB MYERS: Depends. If that's the best thing to do, that's what we'll do. I don't know, I mean, we'll see who they are, who is there, how much we like them. We just started here in Chicago interviewing some of these guys, you've seen some of them on film just like we have, and I've actually watched a few of them live. So you have a better sense and we'll get more of a sense as the draft approaches.

But it depends. Some guys are older that can help you more and there's young guys, young guys that can help you. But then you weigh it against what you can do with those picks and I have no idea right now what we can do with 14 or 7 or them together, and I'm sure we'll find out and make the best decision we can.

Q. To follow up on that, you've had the conversations obviously with Steph, Klay, Draymond leading up to this point in the last few months. Do you think they would be comfortable with adding two more rookies to the roster if that's the route you guys chose?

BOB MYERS: Yeah, I would think so. I hope they trust that we have a sense of what we are doing. I think Harrison as a seventh pick helped us as a rookie. As the season went on he played well and started well in the playoffs that first year, we went to the second round his rookie year.

Depends. We'll look at it. They will be involved. They will, I'm sure, weigh in on their thoughts and we'll welcome those, we always do, and if there's something that makes sense for them and for us, we'll do it.

But again, it depends. You don't really know what those picks are worth, at least trade-wise until it gets probably at least a week out, maybe two from the draft and if we can do so, we will, and hopefully those guys will help us whoever we end up with.

Q. How absolutely necessary is it if you draft a rookie to have a guy who could help right away?

BOB MYERS: Depends on what else we can do with the roster. Depends on kind of how we view it, how much depth, where is Klay at, how much do we think James can do. We have some guys coming back. I mean, it's hard to tell. You put your roster forward and then you don't -- there's some things that please you more and there's things that disappoint you. There's injuries. Like I said, last year, we thought we had it figured out. We thought we were going to have Klay. That was kind of unusual to happen the day of the draft.

Yeah, it's something whereas it gets closer, there's rookies that can help. There's rookies that help teams that are very good. It's just a question of how much do they help, and do they make sense and like I said, as it gets closer, we'll have a better idea.

But having two swings at it in what we think is a really, really good draft is important for many reasons. Probably at least hopefully you get one guy that can help you, maybe both that can help you, at least by the time the playoffs come around you hope that's possible in some capacity. Helping you doesn't necessarily mean they are starting. That might mean maybe they give you 15, 20 minutes, maybe more, maybe less. But we'll also know what we could have done with those picks, and again, it's too hard to say right now, about a month out from the draft.

Q. GMs watch the playoffs closely as I'm sure you're doing, is there anything you've learned from watching which teams have succeeded about team building and just from this postseason?

BOB MYERS: I mean, look, there's been a ton of injuries this year. So I don't know how you really even weigh that in the process of this year's playoffs, and there's been much written about why. I think COVID's been difficult for many people, and some teams, a short layoff, you're seeing that matter.

So I don't know. This is a little bit of an anomaly I think with the injuries. Usually it's the team that has the best two or three players; that historically would tell you who wins, who wins the championships. A lot of those two, three guys weren't there for some of these teams. And so what does that mean? I don't know. It looks like teams that have a lot of depth are doing well so far, that have six, seven, eight deep.

I joked around with somebody, when we were -- you might know this because you follow us pretty close. I was asked going into our third or fourth Finals about the problems with our bench and that we had no bench scoring. And I said, I looked at our bench scoring for the five years we made the finals and we were 27th, 24th, 28th, 29th, 26th.

And if you look at the playoffs now, what you do see is some of the best players scoring most points, which is not surprising, but most of the time you see the top five guys; this guy is getting 38, 40 minutes. So your bench really gets squeezed.

Maybe not so much this year, and I don't know if that is something that's a trend or the way the game's played, you need more depth. Obviously it's exciting to see some of these young players emerge. As far as team building, there's always something different. It's more about I think the way the league is trending, and you watch that, you report on that, as well and we watch that, as well, as far as how do you play with all this pace and space.

Q. This draft has been considered a five-player draft up top. What are your kind of early impressions of maybe that meat of the lottery, where you're picking and a little bit beyond that?

BOB MYERS: Yeah, it's interesting. So I got here today to Chicago and it's funny, I don't know that it's going to be that. I think I thought that, too. I don't know if it's going to be what people think, at least talking to other teams. I don't know if it's just going to be five players. I don't know if it will narrow down to a four-player draft or three or it will become a six-player draft or seven. But that's what this process is about. I mean, you're going to find whatever you thought of today may change.

I think some guys are not in that five, I think I know which five you're talking about, may end up in that group, and that will be interesting to see.

I do know this: I can find 14 players, and I think our group can that we like. So I think if we can find 14, we can find seven, and it is really deep. And that's not me saying that because we have two picks. Make your own determination, but it is in our opinion a pretty deep draft. So it's nice to have two picks in it.

Q. The last time you had two picks was 2012 and a lot was riding on that draft. Have you had found any similarities yet or do you think anything will be akin to that 2012 year?

BOB MYERS: We're the seventh pick, and I think Harrison turned out to be a good pick for us.

Q. Can you top Festus?

BOB MYERS: Everybody says we were so smart, you know, Draymond pick. I said, well, we took -- I love Festus, but we did take Festus in front of Draymond. I love what Denver's GM said about Jokic. She said, "If we were so smart, we would have taken him before 41 or 42." You do the best you can. Sometimes you hit on that stuff. Sometimes you don't.

Like I said, this is an interesting one because I do think this draft has a lot of good players in it. I think it goes deeper than most.

Most drafts may end pretty quickly and there's a shelf to them or maybe there's a shelf early. But yeah, there's a lot riding on every draft. They are all pretty young now. Maybe you see one or two guys that are more than 19; you mentioned the lottery. There's a huge focus on player development, more than there has been. The league is really young, and we want to make sure whoever we draft develops. We'll have, again, two more guys to put in that process.

Q. How much time were you spending with it, like you're going to spend all your time on seven last time and then whatever is left, you figure out 30? How did you divide up the duties of it all?

BOB MYERS: Yeah, it's a good question. I mean, we didn't get in anybody, nobody that was in the top seven would come see us. Even Harrison made us go to New York to see. I think this will be different. I think we'll get in more guys for the seventh pick. And I don't know why that was. I guess we weren't really a good brand then or maybe players didn't want to come. I'm not sure exactly why. But we couldn't get a lot of the players that were in our range to even visit us.

I think we'll get that this time, which is always helpful to have guys in your facility. I remember focusing maybe more on maybe 30 and 35 because there were so many names there. The interesting thing about having 7 and 14 is that's it for us. We don't have any other picks.

And you do spend a lot more time, may or may not realize, but when you have the 20th or 25th pick or 30th, there's so many variables of who is going to be there. This is a little more finite. Now got to get to 14. There will be trade possibilities and things we discuss, moving back, moving up, maybe packaging the picks. But that was a lot because you're talking about bringing in 50 players for the 30th and 35th pick. Obviously Draymond was one of them; so was Festus.

I think this will be less people coming through our gym but obviously maybe more important to try to get it right.

Q. Just wondering in terms of the game plan, how much is affected by Klay's progression in terms of you guys zeroing in on exactly your needs and your wants for the upcoming draft moving forward as you get ready for the new season?

BOB MYERS: Yeah, I don't know. Klay, he's going to be back. When that will be, we will see. How do we think he'll play? We think he'll play very well when he gets back. The key really is not how we begin. It's how we play when he's back and how we play when gets his feet under him, and that will happen more in the latter part of the season. He'll be back before then but really when he get goods his stride.

You can't draft -- well, I suppose you could, but you're not going to draft a mature, somebody of Klay Thompson's pedigree. So when he comes back, there's nothing we can do in free agency or this draft to duplicate or make up for what Klay brings. And we can't wait for that -- for many, many reasons, for him, for us and for the success of our team.

With these two picks, hopefully we can play one of these guys or two of these guys until he gets back and then have them develop in some capacity and have a little more depth than we've had and see how it goes and have a full training camp. It will be nice to have that amount of time to integrate these guys and these two picks, I would imagine, will have a Summer League and have a training camp, which is really important.

Q. The last two years, the process with these guys, what are you looking for in the interviews?

BOB MYERS: Yeah, I think more than ever, and not that it's ever been not an issue, but who these guys are. Players make so much money, which they earn and deserve, and the player movement is more than it's ever been, which is fine. There's nothing against that, either.

But we really -- you find out, when you're fortunate to win like we did for those years, how much it matters who you are. That will reveal itself at some point. You need talent. You need all those things. But eventually finding out the makeup of somebody's character is the thing we're really looking for when you're talking to somebody, because that will determine how much they are going to work, how good of a teammate they are going to be, how competitive they might be, their desire; whoever we draft, if they don't get better, then that will be a failure because they are all mostly, like I said, young.

So you really have to count on their desire and intelligence and work ethic. If you can determine that, which is really hard to do in a 30-minute interview or one work out but that's really what we are trying to figure out. We've seen them play. You know how big they are, what their length is, their measurable, but the hardest thing for us is finding out who someone is. Because you can get that wrong; you can find great talent but eventually the character will show itself. Once you have a player, whether they are talented or not and they are not a great person, you've got to deal with that. And that's not something any organization wants to deal with.

Q. The last two years, you've had a pronounced focus on development for obvious reasons, I guess, but are you prepared to do that again for a third straight year?

BOB MYERS: I mean, I think -- you're talking about '19, '20, I don't think we went into that year thinking it was going to be what it was. But clearly it went sideways pretty fast. Then last year, as far as going into the year, we thought we would have Klay; we didn't.

We felt when we lost Klay, it would change our season, and it did. We still tried to win. We still wanted to win. I think it was hard. Put Steve in a hard position to try to develop James, develop Jordan, even integrate Juan, figure out the bench on the fly, and not just because those are all new guys in our rotation, but also because, again, shortened training camp, not a lot of practices.

Sounds like an excuse in some capacity, but it really wasn't an ideal here to kind of try to implement new things. And we play a certain way, and it's not simple. And that's fine. That's great. Benefits us greatly and it has, and I think we'll keep playing that way. But it takes a little time to figure out what we're trying to do.

The good news is for a guy like Jordan, seems like he's figured it out a little bit. James still has to figure it out more. He got a little bit of a taste of it. He's got to learn more. And then these two guys that we draft are going to have to pick it up, as well. So as far as developing, yeah, the easiest way to get better and the way we did get -- I guess helped us win in '14, '15 was developing Klay and Steph and Draymond and Harrison, and Andre became pretty developed. You're always doing it, but we're also trying to win. And I think that there won't be -- I don't think it will be a situation where we are trying to develop players at the risk of losing; that's the short answer to your question. We're not going to develop and have it cost us games. That's not the plan.

Q. Is there a way to express how patient you can be at this stage?

BOB MYERS: Well, I think what we have to find out, and Steve and I talked, not for any player but for our organization, we have to see how good we are. We have to know. We knew at one point.

But last year, again, without Klay, I don't know. I mean, we didn't make the playoffs. That's not good. But how good are we? I guess it's hard to evaluate how good we are or not without some of our top guys playing and playing together.

So we need to figure that out one way or the other. So that means trying to win. At the end of the year, we'll see where -- God willing, we're healthy. And if you have healthy and you don't win and you don't succeed, you have to look in the mirror and say, hey, what are we going to do.

But until you -- and again, it's an incomplete right now. We have to see where we are on the roster with Klay and then go from there. We need that answer. We've got to figure out that answer. Our payroll's huge. I mean, we've got to find out how good we are.

Q. You've been through this several years now. I wonder if the pressure from your end, does it all feel the same or year-to-year, does it get any different? Does it feel any different than any other year where Joe Lacob is over your shoulder, like, "Deliver me a winner."

BOB MYERS: I don't think that's ever going to change. I don't know, having done it -- the first draft, it's scary, I've got to be honest. You mentioned 2012, never done it, having four picks. Having done it now for -- this will be, I don't know, nine or ten years.

Yeah, I mean, like you, in any job, you write for ten years, you're better in your tenth year. You're calmer. You're hopefully more efficient. But you still want to get it right and it's still competitive. I mean, the hardest thing about this job is you have this chance, and you want to make sure you make the most of it, and you want to examine your process and there's never been more people in a draft room. There's more analytics than there was ten years ago by an exponential number. So you have got more information but sometimes there's an information overload.

I like our group. I don't do this by myself. I love who I work with, and I love our process, and Joe is part of that for me. I love his input. I love his -- I love the fact he's got a draft board. I like that engagement level. So I'm looking forward to it.

Believe it or not, the stressful part is probably the week leading up to it when you have to decide, keeping your picks, trading your picks. But once it gets there and you're probably keeping them, it's kind of fun because you've got your board; you're got your order.

But the lead-up, and I expect this year to be probably a little more crazy in that department having two lottery picks. But we're going to find out what they are worth, because right now, they are just numbers. We'll see how valuable they are to us or anybody else.

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