Warriors’ co-owner Joe Lacob should feel good about the Steve Kerr hire so far. It’s still the honeymoon phase but he has the Warriors on a 12-game winning streak and playing the best defense in the NBA this young season.
But in praising Kerr Wednesday night Lacob took some unnecessary shots at former coach Mark Jackson, saying “he couldn’t get along with anybody else in the organization” and saying that Lacob opened his checkbook and wanted Jackson to bring in better assistant coaches but instead he just brought in his guys.
“I have a tremendous amount of respect for Mark Jackson and what he accomplished as our head coach,” Lacob said. “He did a terrific job. I’ve said that many times over the last several months and in recent days, including at this week’s event. I was asked to draw comparisons earlier this week between building businesses in the tech world and the sports world, and unfortunately, I used some poor judgment. That’s my mistake. I did attempt to reach out to Mark on Friday, and I certainly apologize for comments and any unintended harm. I know that Mark will succeed again in this business.”
Lacob should have apologized. There was no reason to take public shots at Jackson to contrast him with Kerr.
Jackson won 51 games as the Warriors coach last season and he was loved in their locker room — the players were angry he was fired.
They were also professional enough to move past it. And in return Kerr is running smarter sets, getting guys in better positions to play to their strengths, and generally doing a spectacular job raising up a good team to great (something he should have learned in his playing days under Gregg Popovich and Phil Jackson).
It’s early, but it looks like Lacob and company made the right call. That doesn’t mean you take a shot at Jackson.