Warriors working on energy level
OAKLAND, California (AP):
Stephen Curry realises that there's plenty of chatter about the defending champions and their lack of sheer domination during the season's first half.
Steve Kerr has a list of things he'd like to clean up as his Warriors push toward another play-off berth and, they hope, a winning finals run this spring.
"You've just got to have a certain level of care about what you're doing," Curry said.
Even with some early bumps, everybody still knows how great this Golden State group is: the best in the NBA to date, to be precise.
That hardly means this perfectionist group is close to content in early February with the playoffs still two months away.
"I'd like to see us come back from the All-Star break and really turn it up," Kerr said. "But for now, we're going to continue to talk about the issues, not grind them to death, but keep them mindful of what we're trying to accomplish and take advantage of these next four games at home and try to get back on track."
It's quite a stretch before the break.
"Five games to finish off on a strong note," Curry said. "Our energy needs to be great, our attention to detail and boxing out and taking care of the basketball, stuff we talk about all the time, but those two in particular. If we can kind of focus on and hone in on those two things and put together a nice little stretch of games and wins, we want to go into the break with a good vibe."
SNAPPY BALL MOVEMENT
The Warriors are working to "reinforce fundamentals," according to Kerr, even if that sounds a little far-fetched for a superstar roster again featuring four All-Stars.
Even the best get back to basics sometimes.
Curry talks about returning to the snappy ball movement that makes this team so tough to stop - "it's a beautiful style of basketball", he explained. "The things that go into having an edge are just a level of care and intensity and mental focus, being physical, being smart, not giving the other team any kind of life when it comes to mental lapses."
Kerr isn't overly concerned about his determined players responding.
"We're trying to get back to building habits. We've gotten into some bad habits of late," said Kerr. "Just general film reminders. I don't need to yell and scream. We're doing fine, but we've just got to mix in some drill work, film work, and prod them a little bit and our guys are great. They turn it around quickly."
"Look, every team in the league goes through this stretch in January where you're just kind of tired and you need a break. You need some rejuvenation," Kerr said.