Warriors’ Kevon Looney reveals secret to being great NBA rebounder

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Warriors’ Kevon Looney reveals secret to being great NBA rebounder originally appeared on NBC Sports Bay Area

There’s no denying Kevon Looney could go down in history as a Warriors great, known for his elite rebounding skills and status as the ultimate teammate.

His fingerprints are all over Golden State’s success, most evident by the fifth 20-rebound night of his NBA playoff career last season. But what has helped Looney find such success on the glass over the years?

“It takes a lot of effort. You’ve got to be relentless,” Looney said Wednesday as he and Klay Thompson spoke in the Philippines ahead of the Anta Squad Asia Tour at the Peninsula Manila hotel. “You’ve got to know your shooters, you’ve got to know your teammates. You’ve got to know your offense, and that kind of goes a long way.

“So, it takes a lot of time, studying. It’s something that it’s kind of hard to practice sometimes, but you’ve got to figure out what makes you a great rebounder and what makes you special, and your physical attributes that you can use. I’m not the best leaper, but I know how to use my body and my arms. … I’ve got some of the best shooters in the world, so I know where they’re going to miss, I know where the ball’s going to be at. I take the studying, watching them shooting after practice, learning about them and carry it over to the court.”

Looney made an impact in the Warriors’ opening-round playoff series against the Sacramento Kings last season, pulling down 20 or more boards in three of the seven games. In doing so, he joined Hall of Famers Wilt Chamberlain and Nate Thurmond as the only Warriors with multiple games of at least 20 rebounds in one playoff series.

This came just one year removed from his 22-rebound night that helped Golden State close out the Memphis Grizzlies in six games during the 2022 Western Conference semifinals. And in the 2023 semifinals, Looney grabbed 23 boards in Game 1 against the Los Angeles Lakers.

The 6-foot-9 center has provided the Warriors with the manual labor required to maintain an NBA dynasty behind the sharpshooting ways of Golden State snipers Steph Curry and Klay Thompson, overcoming injuries in his career to smash and bash beneath the rim as part of an often-small lineup.

The attention to detail and time Looney dedicates to his craft is evident every time he steps on the court, and that’s something for which Dub Nation certainly is grateful.

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