Golden State Warriors coach Steve Kerr knows his team has suffered some uncharacteristic losses this season, including six at Oracle Arena, but he remains confident it will be able to bounce back and reach its peak in the near future.
"We've got to do better," Kerr said before Saturday night's game against the Sacramento Kings. "We know that. We've got to play better as a team.
We're at the halfway point now of the season coming up, so we are going to continue to work and we're going to get to the point where we're going to reach our potential, but we haven't gotten there yet for sure."
"It never comes down to one thing," he said. "But when we're at our best, our defense is really sharp. And our offensive execution complements our defense — the game's always connected. Every game that we struggle, it's not one thing, it's always something a little different.
The other night I think our offensive execution really suffered and that led to poor transition defense. But a different night you could point to something else.
"We just haven't gotten to the point where we know what to expect from our group night in and night out. It's been a little bit of a roller-coaster ride the whole first half of the season.
Some of that has to do with injuries, some of that has to do with the fact that we just haven't built the momentum that can come through consistent play and attention to detail. That's what we have to get to, and I'm confident we'll get there."
"There's a difference between lack of focus and where you are as a team," Kerr said. "Where we were four years ago compared to where we are now, we're in an entirely different place as an organization.
So you have to adapt to your circumstances and that means injuries, fatigue, whatever it is, you have to get off the mat and keep going.
There's a reason — we're trying to accomplish something that has only happened a few times in the history of the league. We're trying to get to the Finals for the fifth year in a row, we're trying to win our third title in a row. It's not as simple as, 'Oh, we got a great roster. We're going to do it.'"
Kerr said. "Teams have emulated us in a lot of ways in terms of pace. Four years ago we were No. 1 in the league in pace. Now we're in the middle of the pack and we're actually playing faster than we did four years ago.
So the whole league's playing faster. The whole league's playing smaller, shooting more 3s. So the league has changed.
They say imitation's the sincerest form of flattery. That's true. We're seeing a lot of teams coming at us just like we've been going at other teams for many years.
So the league's gotten better, the quality of play out there, the number of teams in the Western Conference who are really good, including this one here tonight (in Sacramento).