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May 20, 2016

Steve Kerr

Oklahoma City, Oklahoma: Practice Day

Q. Steph probably answered it for us in the third quarter the other night, but how was his elbow today?
STEVE KERR: It's fine, yeah. Nothing wrong.

Q. Is there going to be any chance of draining that welt or whatever was on there?
STEVE KERR: Not that I know of, and the trainers didn't say anything about it. It doesn't appear to be any swelling.

Q. He was able to practice today?

Q. What did you guys get done today after a day off yesterday to focus?
STEVE KERR: We went over some defense and some strategic stuff, 5 on 0. We didn't scrimmage, but we got up and down the floor and got a lot of running and shooting in for rhythm.

Q. How happy have you been with the defensive approach with Draymond being able to sort of freelance a little around and leaving one guy open at times. How has that worked for you?
STEVE KERR: Our defense was good the other night. We did a great job of finishing the possessions with a rebound. That's what we didn't do in the first game. So it's not just getting a stop. It's securing the ball, and I thought our offense helped our defense a lot, too, by not turning it over. We were able to avoid those easy transition hoops that they hurt us with in Game 1.

Q. Making sure you have the extra body around to help out with Durant and Westbrook, is it almost a necessary evil when you're playing a team with two guys the caliber as they are?
STEVE KERR: You're always kind of picking your poison. In every matchup in the NBA, you have to worry about certain players, certain actions. Every team is a little different, and with this team, obviously, Russell and KD are so good that you have to do anything you can to slow them down and weigh the consequences of what you're doing strategically. So we'll keep going. We'll try to slow them down, but we know they're going to get their points.

Q. You know also they may make adjustments as far as who that fifth guy is?
STEVE KERR: Sure, that's what the playoffs are about. Going on to the next game, making adjustments and both teams will do that, both teams have to be ready.

Q. (No Microphone) for a handful of years. Is there anything else about their home court that makes that a tough place to play?
STEVE KERR: It's just extremely loud. It's definitely one of the loudest venues in the league. Fans have had a lot to cheer about the last six, seven years, so it's a great venue. It will be a lot of fun to be there and facing a great team on their home floor. That is the best challenge there is.

Q. Do you get the sense that your guys kind of like that, the idea of trying to quiet an opposing crowd like that?
STEVE KERR: Yeah, I think our guys are up for the challenge. We've been in this situation the last couple of years a few times now and where you're on the road and you don't have home-court advantage so it's all part of it. When you're able to breakthrough and get a win, it's a big confidence booster, and it's a lot of fun.

Q. As you look back at the film and the balance you guys had so many people contributing and the ability to rest your guys down the stretch, how important was that in the last game?
STEVE KERR: Well, yeah, we play a lot of people, and if we can get good contributions from the bench, get a little more rest for our key guys, our starters in particular, then it's very helpful. But every game's different and you just have to approach it according to what comes our way.

Q. Nothing more important than playing every other day. Right now you have a nice big break, but is it good to get rested and not play every other day?
STEVE KERR: Yeah, we don't like to play people more than 40 minutes if we can afford it, and it worked well for us in the regular season, playing a lot of people and trusting a lot of people, and we plan on continuing that. Only a day of rest now for the rest of the series after Game 3, so depth is important.

Q. You've seen Durant and Westbrook so many times during a given season. Do you stick with a general philosophy on how to slow them down? Or are there things you can continually learn and pick up about them that you can adjust to?
STEVE KERR: I think you can still learn some things as you go. Even though we've played these guys so many times the last couple of years, you always pick up something here or there. Maybe it's a set that they had or they're playing a different lineup. You know, we didn't see a lot of the Kanter-Adams lineup before, and that affects how we guard Russell and KD.

So there are always little twists and turns that you have to prepare for.

Q. Can you talk a little bit about the two Brazilians [Leandro Barbosa and Anderson Varejao]?
STEVE KERR: I love my two Brazilians. They're great. They're always smiling. They bring a lot of joy to the team. They're funny, they're both great players and very important for our depth but also our chemistry. They make people happy.

Q. The first game you said that the Thunder were pretty good at forcing you guys to do isolation. So the second game do you guys change a little bit? Is there anything you forced them to do?
STEVE KERR: We were just more solid. We moved the ball better, but we made simpler plays and had fewer turnovers. Our execution was just crisper. We had a better rhythm as a result.

Q. So the second game, the second quarter, Steph just played more without the ball. So is that part of your plan, you just try to play him more without the ball?
STEVE KERR: We like to do both. Steph is so good with the ball, but we have a lot of playmakers, so we like to run him off the ball and off some screens as well. Each game is a little different. We have to figure out what works on that night. Sometimes he's better off the ball, sometimes he's better on the ball. But he's usually pretty good either way.

Q. How much do you think back to the shot that Steph hit at Oklahoma City in overtime as kind of a marking point, whether it's your season or his?
STEVE KERR: I don't think about it a whole lot. I mean, it was for sure the game of the year in terms of what people will remember from the regular season. It was an incredible shot. It was a spectacular comeback. But I don't spend a lot of time thinking about it. I'm sure we'll think about it tomorrow when we're in the building again and you kind of have that memory, but it doesn't mean anything now.

Q. Are you surprised by how much you've been able to disturb Kevin Durant?
STEVE KERR: I don't know if we disturbed him that much. He had 23 points in the first half. So we're just doing our best. He's a great player, he's going to score, he's going to make difficult shots. We're trying our best. Whatever happens, happens. But I don't feel like we're disturbing him.

Q. You said before the game that Roberson was going to be open. Why are you okay with him knowing that, with being open about him being open?
STEVE KERR: Well, he already knows. I mean, he watches the tape just like we do so it's not a secret. Like I said, every game you sort of pick your spots and he's a really important player for them and a hell of a defender. We've got a game plan for him just like we've got a game plan for everybody, and that entails different strategies and different things that we might do.

Q. You guys got several turnovers trapping on the sideline, Harrison, Barbosa, a couple other guys getting to the ball. How important has that been just guys really getting to the ball and two guys forcing it?
STEVE KERR: Yeah, I thought our defensive activity was better in Game 2 than it was in Game 1. Game 1 we seemed tired in the second half and we didn't force turnovers. I think they only committed two of them in the second half. So we had better activity for a longer period of time, and that helped us kind of break free a little bit.

Q. Why is Andre Iguodala so good defensively?
STEVE KERR: Andre's just an incredibly smart, defensive player. He's got long arms. He anticipates plays before they happen. That's a good combination -- that kind of athleticism and the awareness and the intelligence to kind of think what's happening before it does. He's really good at that.

Q. Is he the kind of player that is verbal on the court?
STEVE KERR: Yeah, Andre is one of our guys who will offer suggestions. Draymond is another one, Bogut too. And we listen to our guys. They're the ones out there who are playing, and if they have an idea, we usually go with it.

Q. [Inaudible] was saying yesterday that Andre sometimes gets frustrated with what's going on around him, guys that maybe don't see the game similarly and sometimes he has to get over that. Do you see that?
STEVE KERR: Andre, I think when the game turns into a pickup game, which happens occasionally in the regular season where all the fundamentals and rules go out the window and teams are just flying up and down the court, he's sort of disgusted by that, just like the coaching staff is. He hates that.

Andre is happiest when the game is being played at a really intelligent, competitive level, and that's what he respects and appreciates. So he's at his best during the playoffs because of that, because everyone has to execute and be at their best.

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