January 4, 2017, 8:50 am
Earl Watson went on the Doug & Wolf show on Tuesday and discussed Brandon Knight’s defense, or lack thereof in his opinion, and how that’s led to less minutes this season.
Watson was asked about Knight’s five-minute outing and said that “ball pressure is most important at that position. We feel like Tyler Ulis gives us that every time we put him on the court. It’s not scoring points, it’s not — you have 20 points and be efficient or offensively — it’s can you create a presence defensively. When you talk about building a culture, you go through your first season and you identify the players who are going to commit to the mindset or the physical sacrifice of defensively building that culture.”
When asked if Knight has “the want-to” and “heart and hustle” to play defense, Watson went on to talk about the roster as a whole saying “not many of them have made the playoffs” and discussed the difference between offense and defense.
The Watson interview starts around the 12:00 mark.
Watson could change his stance on Knight at any given time but his lack of playing time stems from performance and attitude in the coach’s eyes and not injury or fit next to Eric Bledsoe and Devin Booker.
The coach talks about Booker’s struggles shooting the ball and says he tells Booker to focus on defense in those moments and other coach speak. We’d love to hear more about getting Booker easier shots in movements that you see Golden State run, focusing on 1-2 dribbles rather than the take turns offense and isolation plays the Booker is running — maybe on his own or because the system isn’t tuned to make his life easier.