Loon's wholesome answer on what winning MIP would mean to him


In a 2022-23 NBA season that’s been filled with ups and downs for the defending champion Warriors, Kevon Looney has been their steady Iron Man

The three-time champion hasn't missed a game since last season; that's 181 consecutive games, including the playoffs and all of this season. He's averaging career highs in nearly every category across the board -- with some seeing a drastic uptick -- in his eighth season in the league.

After the Warriors’ comeback win over the New Orleans Pelicans on Tuesday at Chase Center, Looney sat down with NBC Sports Bay Area’s Bonta Hill, Chris Mullin and Festus Ezeli on “Warriors Postgame Live” and talked about what winning the NBA’s Most Improved Player Award would mean to him. 

“That would mean the world to me,” Looney said. “All the work that I put in in the offseason and all the work I put in behind the scenes is starting to show up on the court, that’s all you can dream of and be recognized by the fans and your peers. 

“So that would mean the world to me. I’ve been working really hard and to see it come to fruition has been big for me.” 

Looney is averaging 7.2 points on 63.6 percent shooting, 9.1 rebounds and 2.5 assists in 23.8 minutes through the Warriors’ 77 games so far this season -- all career highs. For his career, he's averaging 5.1 points, 5.5 rebounds and 1.5 assists in 17.7 minutes a game.

Earlier this season, he grabbed a career-high 20 rebounds in the Warriors’ double-overtime win over the Atlanta Hawks on Jan. 2. Since then, he’s had three more games where he’s finished with 16-plus boards. 

And there's still plenty of basketball to be played. 

Last season, the world watched Looney step up in a huge way during the Warriors' postseason run to their fourth title in eight seasons. During the Western Conference finals against the Dallas Mavericks, Looney averaged 10.6 points on 70.6 percent shooting, 10.6 rebounds and 3.0 assists.

He was just as brilliant in the NBA Finals against the Boston Celtics and ultimately helped lead the Warriors to the sweetest victory. 

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He celebrated the championship with his teammates and then got back to work all offseason. And so far, it's paying off immensely for Iron Man Loon and the Warriors. 

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