Even with a 119-111 victory over the Chicago Bulls, Warriors head coach Steve Kerr was far from satisfied with his team’s play.
In his postgame press conference, Kerr described Friday as a “pickup game” and said his team occasionally wasn’t playing with a sense of purpose. Twice he used the word “mindless” when reflecting on his team’s performance
“We had stretches in the game that were good, but never felt like we were in control,” Kerr said. “KerLittle bit of a pickup game out there at times. We’ve got to get better .We just have to try to connect the game for 48 minutes. It felt mindless out there at times.”
Kerr’s directed his ire in a number of directions. In the first quarter, Golden State sent Chicago to the foul line for 12 free throws via eight personal fouls. Multiple came on illegal screens, but defending without fouling has been a constant theme for GSW this season. The early foul trouble disrupted both the flow of the game and Golden State’s preferred rotation plans.
The Warriors entered Friday’s game leading the NBA in personal fouls per game. Though the first quarter was an aberration, Chicago still shot 24 free throws to Golden State’s 23 on the night.
“It never felt like a fluid game,” Kerr said.
The Warriors also coughed up 20 turnovers in the game, four of which came on travels.
Stephen Curry traveled once and turned it over an uncharacteristic six times. Draymond Green, who finished one rebound shy of a triple-double, added four of his own.
The Warriors won’t always get away with so many unforced errors. Friday marked the first time this season that Golden State committed at least 20 turnovers and still won.
“Some of them were just mind-boggling,” Kerr said of GSW’s travels. “Like I said, we were mindless out there.”
Golden State’s late-game decision-making also frustrated Kerr. At one point, the Warriors took seven 3-pointers in eight trips down the court. Draymond Green, an unlikely sharpshooter, was the only one to sink an attempt, and it turned out to be a dagger.
Still, the shot selection took the Warriors out of rhythm and allowed Chicago to inch within a possession. Kerr credited Alex Caruso’s on-ball defense, but said his offense got “stagnant” and “out of rhythm” during the fourth quarter that the Bulls won by six.
Also in the fourth quarter, guard Jordan Poole got whistled for a technical foul for stepping onto the court while celebrating. Kerr said he was surprised by the call and Poole expressed frustration with it. Luckily for the Warriors though, it didn’t prevent them from escaping with a victory.
“(We’ll) take the win, but we need to get better,” Kerr said.