Matt Barnes reveals story of almost offering Kerr marijuana originally appeared on NBC Sports Bayarea
After undergoing back surgery in the summer of 2015, Steve Kerr began experiencing major complications.
The debilitating headaches and nausea caused by leaking spinal fluid forced him to miss the first 43 games of the 2015-16 regular season.
And the issues persisted for so long that Kerr had to step away after Game 2 of the Warriors' first-round playoff series against the Portland Trail Blazers in 2017. He missed 11 games before returning for Game 2 of the NBA Finals against the Cleveland Cavaliers.
"I remember seeing you. It hurt my heart," Matt Barnes said to Kerr on the most recent episode of the "All the Smoke" podcast. "When I was hurt in the Portland series you would lay for a second, you would sit for a second, you would have to stand up for a second, then you would lay for a second.
"I can't imagine what you were going through (during) that time. I didn't want to cross player-coach boundaries, but I was gonna say, 'Coach, let me go in my bag real quick. I got something for you (laughter).'
"I remember the pain you were in. You couldn't sit in the same position for more than two minutes ... I was so close that day to being like, 'Coach. I got a joint (of marijuana) for you man. It's gonna change everything (laughter).' "
Kerr did not reveal whether he would have accepted the offer or not.
Barnes told this story after he asked the eight-time NBA champion for his thoughts on cannabis in professional sports.
"I spoke about this a couple years ago," Kerr said. "I had my own health issues with my back surgery that went wrong. I spoke out that athletes should be allowed to use cannabis.
"I had literally tried it for my pain for my back stuff and had no success with it. Unfortunately, it didn't work. But because I spoke out on it, all of a sudden I got this reputation as the 'pot guy.' I'm like, 'All right, whatever' (laughter).
"The players got a good kick out of it, so that's the main thing (laughter)."
Speaking of the aforementioned "player-coach boundaries," they certainly didn't stop Barnes and the rest of the "We Believe" Warriors from partying with coach Don Nelson after Golden State upset the Dallas Mavericks in the 2007 playoffs.