OAKLAND –- Some of Steve Kerr's grouchiest moments this season have come after practices following a day off. They tend to be unfocused and sloppy.
Yet when the Warriors returned to work Wednesday, after two days off, there was no sign of Stormy Steve.
He had no real complaint.
"I was surprised," he said. "I was very concerned. Normally, practice is not good even after one day off. Two days can be disastrous. But our guys were really focused."
Kerr and his staff may have influenced the experience by changing the routine. They began not with the usual fundamentals and short-burst scrimmages but with eight-minute segments of 5-on-5 competition.
Though it stands to reason that after two days away from the game, the guys would be ready to hoop it up, that doesn't mean their minds and bodies didn't appreciate the recovery time.
"We think we need to get some rest," center Andrew Bogut said. "We have a brutal schedule for the next week or two.
"We're professional enough to know the two days were a gift. They were nice, but we have to not take it for granted. We had a great practice today, we'll have a good one (Thursday) and hopefully come out and beat Utah Friday."
When the Jazz comes into Oracle Arena Friday night, it will have been four full days since the Warriors last played. They routed the Lakers in Los Angeles last Sunday, one day after routing the Hornets at Oracle.
Kerr gave everybody the day off Monday, the team reconvened Tuesday for a community event and finally broke a real sweat in Wednesday's practices, which was followed by yet another team event.
So even the days off aren't really days off.
"Any time you can get a couple days off in the season, you welcome them because it's a long grind," Kerr said, pointing out the scheduling quirks that result in stretches with four games in five nights, or six in nine or nine in 14.
"So we'll take the rest," he said. "We had a great practice today and we'll have another one tomorrow and we'll be ready to go Friday."