Steve Kerr uses Steph Curry quote to ease Jonathan Kuminga’s frustration

Kerr uses Steph quote to ease Kuminga’s frustration with role originally appeared on NBC Sports Bayarea

Jonathan Kuminga‘s future was a hot topic in the aftermath of the Warriors‘ season-ending loss to the Los Angeles Lakers last week.

Kuminga, the springy 20-year-old forward, played sparingly in his second career NBA playoff run. Reports swirled that Kuminga could seek a trade if he doesn’t receive a “full-time role” moving forward.

Warriors coach Steve Kerr used a story from a recent dinner with stars Steph Curry and Draymond Green to address Kuminga’s concerns.

Kerr asked Curry and Green, teammates for the last 11 seasons with 13 combined trips to the All-Star Game, how long it took them before they could consistently impact winning at the NBA level.

“Steph said his third year, and Draymond said his fourth year. These are guys who went to college for three and four years,” Kerr said Tuesday to 95.7 The Game’s Mark Willard and Dan Dibley. “They were 24, 25 years old with full college experience and multiple years of NBA experience before they felt like they could impact winning.

“This stuff does not happen overnight.”

Kuminga played 6.1 minutes per game in the Warriors’ playoff run, a small step down from his playing time during their championship run last summer (8.6 minutes). He played four or fewer minutes in nine of the team’s 13 contests in the 2023 playoffs, including three DNPs (Did Not Play).

While the six players selected ahead of Kuminga in the 2021 NBA Draft found starring roles on their team, only Cleveland Cavaliers forward Evan Mobley is making an impact on a playoff team.

Youngsters like Cade Cunningham (Detroit Pistons), Jalen Green (Houston Rockets) and Josh Giddey (Oklahoma City Thunder) are not on rosters currently chasing a championship like the 20-year-old Kuminga.

“Is he upset that he didn’t play? I think he’s frustrated that he didn’t play,” Kerr said to Willard and Dibley. “I would hope anybody in his situation would be frustrated with not playing.

“These guys are competitors, and they’re dying to be out there. I didn’t put him out there much, so he has every right to be frustrated. Anything beyond that is just speculation.”

Kuminga was drafted in 2021 as an 18-year-old oozing with potential after spending one year after high school with the NBA G League Ignite. He will turn 21 years old in October, just days before he officially begins Year 3 in the league.

RELATED: Warriors’ two-timeline gamble ends in narrow loss

Curry was drafted as a 21-year-old after three seasons of college ball at Davidson. A 21-year-old Green was gearing up for one more season under coach Tom Izzo at Michigan State.

“All these young guys have a lot to learn,” Kerr said to Willard and Dibley. “That will come with time, but we can’t rush it.”

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