Golden State Warriors being cautious with injuries to Klay Thompson, Stephen Curry
The Golden State Warriors have no reason to concede in the chase for the Western Conference’s No. 1 seed. That race remains as tight as ever, with the Houston Rockets holding a 1 1/2 game lead on the Warriors after Golden State’s win last night against the Los Angeles Lakers.
Attaining that No. 1 seed, if it happens for Golden State, will be done without All-Star guards Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson for the foreseeable future. Curry is out at least the next four games as he tries to heal up from a right ankle injury and Thompson will miss the same stretch as well. The team announced yesterday that Thompson has a fractured right thumb and will be re-evaluated on March 22.
Warriors coach Steve Kerr knows having Curry and Thompson healthy for another NBA Finals run is the top priority. As such, writes Monte Poole of NBCSportsBayArea.com, he and the Warriors are taking it slowly and carefully with the next steps for Curry and Thompson:
“We’re trying to build up the strength as best we can around the ankle,” coach Steve Kerr said Wednesday, shortly before tipoff against the Lakers. “The training staff felt an extra week or 10 days of intense rehabilitation will put him in a much better position to play through the rest of the year with less risk of spraining the ankle again.”
It’s a strategy Curry, who turned 30 on Wednesday, has accepted, though somewhat grudgingly.
“Selfishly, I was always keying in on tonight, just because it was a big day. You only turn 30 once,” he said earlier Wednesday. “But you have to keep a big-picture perspective. I understood the thought process around not just how my ankle feels today versus next Wednesday, versus next Friday or whatever, but the things I need to do, rehab-wise, to strengthen with my core and everything that protects your ankle, so that when I do come back, I’m ready.”
The goal is for Curry to have eight or so games before the playoffs. He will be reevaluated next Tuesday, after which a timeline may be established.
“I actually look at this, long-term, as a positive,” Kerr said, pointing out that Thompson has missed 13 games in his career. “The guy’s a machine. Even without the thumb, we were considering giving him a game or two off down the stretch. He’s looked a little more spent recently. So I look at this as a positive.”
* * *