OKLAHOMA CITY – There are certain statistical measures that tell Steve Kerr his Warriors are playing well. One of them, assists per game, is coming up short.
And the numbers are dropping lower with each passing playoff series.
Kerr’s benchmark is 30 assists per game, a number the Warriors reached 43 times during their historic regular season – but only twice through 13 playoff games.
Through the first three games of the Western Conference Finals against Oklahoma City, the Warriors are averaging 23.3 assists. They averaged 25.4 in the conference semifinals against Portland and, before that, 28.5 in the first round against Houston.
“Obviously, this is a long, athletic team,” Kerr said in his news conference prior to Game 4 Tuesday night. “We’ve played one good game out of the three. We’ve got to play better and that means a lot of different things. It does mean moving the ball more.
“But statistics aren’t always going to be the same. When you play a team five, six, seven straight times, and you know one another, it’s hard to look at the regular season stats, when you play 82 games, and expect them to line up.”
The results, so far, have a brought a starkly different Warriors team. The offense that so shredded opponents in the regular is finding it infinitely more difficult.
One of the keys to success is sharing the ball, something inhibited by OKC’s length. Breaking through that is one of the keys to the Warriors finding success.