“Love the Guy You Got”: Steve Kerr Gets Honest on Longing For Heat Rookie Over “Baller” Brandin Podziemski

Published 12/28/2023, 9:01 PM EST

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USA Today via Reuters

20-year-old Brandin Podziemski earned his spot in the starting lineup, only a few games into his rookie season. The 6 ‘4 baller received appreciation for stepping up for the Golden State Warriors when they needed the most. Subsequently, the Dubs coach Steve Kerr praised him ahead of the Thursday night game against the Miami Heat. At the same time, he also revealed his intentions to pick the Heat rookie over Podziemski after the 2023 NBA draft.

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The Warriors trusted their core team in the initial games to deliver. But, the numbers from Andrew Wiggins, Klay Thompson weren’t impressive until Kerr made the big decision. He pushed Wiggins to the bench and brought Podz and Jonathan Kuminga to the starting line-up. The Dubs immediately generated a 5-game winning streak after slipping spots in the points table. Especially, the rookie churned in several memorable double-doubles in the process.

Steve Kerr longed for Heat rookie

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Ahead of the Thursday night game against the Miami Heat, Kerr opened up about his intention to go for the Heat rookie Jaime Jaquez Jr. over Brandin Podziemski in the 2023 NBA Draft. This comment came in while he also praised the Dubs rookie for his stupefying ability on the court.

During the pre-game press conference, a reporter asked about the steep rise in Podziemski’s career graph and Kerr out a perfect response. He said, “He’s just a baller,” while describing his ability on the court. The 9x NBA Champion further praised the 20-year-old for his prowess on both ends of the court, and he also added, “He just has a knack. He is always on the right place at the right time.”

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Despite praising him, he revealed his Jaime Jaquez Jr. dream. Shayna Rubin, a Mercury News reporter, posted a small snippet from Kerr’s admission on picking Heat’s rookie Jaime Jaquez over Podz. In her post, Kerr said, “We both said the same thing. We said ‘I love the guy you got.’ … They really liked Brandin and we really liked Jaime.”

Interestingly, Jaquez also found a spot in the starting line-up in the absence of Jimmy Butler.

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Podz’s growth on the court could be astonishing, but playing alongside Stephen Curry played a part in the rookie’s development.

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Brandin Podziemski opens up about Steph’s influence

The last few games weren’t only about Steph and Klay but were also about the 20-year-old rookie. He replicated Curry’s rookie season numbers a few games ago. Podz became the only rookie after Steph to drop a double-double for the Dubs.

And, the Baby-faced assassin has a role in it. In the recent episode of  The “Dubs Talk” podcast, Podz spoke about Curry. He said, “I do ask (Curry) a lot of stuff, but I do understand that he has a lot on his plate… I try to get out only the good questions.” He further added, For me, it’s really cool to be around, to see a star, an MVP, the best point guard in the league.”

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What do you make of Podziemski’s rise to the starting line-up? Let us know in the comments below.

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Written by:

Shahul Hameed

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“If you don't fall how are you going to know what getting up is like." - Reading this, it’d be pretty much evident how much I love and am in awe of Stephen Curry. His Warrior spirit flows right in my veins.
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Edited by:

Sameen Nawathe

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