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Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 18 July 2018

Golden State Warriors nursing Stephen Curry back ‘without having to be Superman’

Stephen Curry was on the court for the Golden State Warriors putting in light work on Monday as the team try to assess his progress in returning to action.
Golden State Warriors guard Stephen Curry, left, celebrates during the team's Game 1 win over the Portland Trail Blazers. Marcio Jose Sanchez / AP / May 1, 2016
Golden State Warriors guard Stephen Curry, left, celebrates during the team's Game 1 win over the Portland Trail Blazers. Marcio Jose Sanchez / AP / May 1, 2016

Stephen Curry was expected back on the court for more light shooting Monday to test his sprained right knee, still with the hope he could be ready to return for the Golden State Warriors’ Game 3 of the Western Conference semi-finals Saturday at the Portland Trail Blazers.

Coach Steve Kerr said Monday that the reigning MVP wouldn’t be available for Tuesday night’s Game 2 with the Warriors up 1-0 in the best-of-seven series after a 118-106 win Sunday in the opener.

“I’ll just say he’s doubtful just so we give everybody something to chew on,” Kerr joked. “He’s not playing tomorrow, but he’s doubtful.”

Curry only briefly showed his face during the team’s shooting time Monday. Golden State didn’t hold a formal practice but instead watched film and shot around. He didn’t take any shots during the portion the media could watch.

• Read more: Draymond Green shapes the Warriors in his image, looking a lot like Stephen Curry’s

• Also see: 2016 NBA play-offs analysis, previews and more

“We have a huge break between 2 and 3. Hopefully we can get our MVP back,” centre Andrew Bogut said.

The superstar point guard sprained the MCL in his knee during a Game 4 first-round victory at the Houston Rockets on April 24 when he slipped on a wet spot just before half-time. Curry also dealt with an ankle injury during the first round and had just returned from that when he got hurt again.

In the first seven quarters without him since the knee injury, the Warriors outscored their opponents by 80 points.

With Golden State scheduled to take Wednesday off from practice, Curry’s first chance to scrimmage in a 5-on-5 scenario would likely be Thursday – and that step would be paramount to determining if he is ready to come back this weekend, Kerr said. Curry will likely have his minutes limited initially to avoid re-injury.

“Thursday, we will definitely get up and down and hopefully he’ll be able to take part, but we don’t know yet,” Kerr said.

“We had the same situation in Houston. We wanted to get him back. We got two days of work in and you could see that he was rusty, but he still makes an impact just being out on the floor.

“I don’t know how it’ll play out here. It’s not like if we’re 2-2 or something we’re not going to bring him back. We can’t let the series score determine whether we bring him back, it’s really based on his health and his rhythm.

“So we’ll do our best to help him get that rhythm in practice and then try to put him in the best position once he is back to make an impact, maybe without having to be Superman.”

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