Curry looks 'great' in first practice back since ankle injury

NBA.com Global on Mar 23, 2018 07:51 AM
Curry looks 'great' in first practice back since injury
FILE - DENVER, CO - NOVEMBER 4: Stephen Curry #30 of the Golden State Warriors warms up before the game against the Denver Nuggets on November 4, 2017 at the Pepsi Center in Denver, Colorado.(Photo by Bart Young/NBAE via Getty Images)

NBA.com staff report

All-Star and former two-time Kia MVP winner Stephen Curry got back in the practice mix for the Golden State Warriors on Wednesday (Thursday, PHL time) and, by all accounts, looked pretty solid.

Curry has been out since March 8 (Mar. 9, PHL time), which is when he sprained his right ankle against the San Antonio Spurs. He was cleared by the team to practice on Tuesday (Wednesday, PHL time) and did exactly that on Wednesday (Thursday, PHL time). His return was a welcome sight for the Warriors, who have been without fellow All-Stars Kevin Durant (ribs) and Klay Thompson (thumb). Additionally, Draymond Green exited Monday night's (Tuesday, PHL time) loss to San Antonio with a pelvic contusion.

The Warriors host the Atlanta Hawks on Friday (Saturday, PHL time), a game ESPN reported that the club is targeting as a likely return date for Curry's return.

After practice, Warriors coach Steve Kerr sounded optimistic about Curry being able to play again in a game soon, writes Connor Letourneau of the San Francisco Chronicle:

“Steph was great,” head coach Steve Kerr said. “He’s chomping at the bit. We’ll see how he responds the next couple days before we decide whether he plays or not.”

Curry, who was cleared to return to practice after getting his ankle re-evaluated Tuesday, is eyeing a return Friday night against Atlanta. Golden State will practice Thursday and shoot around Friday before he can be officially OK’d to play the Hawks.

Kevin Durant (fractured rib) also participated in Wednesday’s non-contact practice, though Kerr said Durant wouldn’t have played if the team had scrimmaged. Klay Thompson, who will have his fractured right thumb re-evaluated Thursday, was a partial participant Wednesday. Both Durant and Thompson are probably more than a week away from returning.

Draymond Green, who didn’t return in Monday’s loss to San Antonio after leaving midway through the second quarter with a pelvic contusion, didn’t practice Wednesday and is considered day-to-day. Forward Omri Casspi (sprained right ankle) did participate in Monday’s practice, but is also day-to-day.

ESPN's Chris Haynes adds that while Kerr is optimistic about the status of Curry playing this week, he didn't seem as much so about Durant or Thompson:

Kerr said he doesn't expect Durant or Thompson to be in uniform this week.

"I think Steph is closer to playing than KD and Klay," he said. "...We're going to be cautious with all of them. ... This is not like a timetable of two to three days. It's just more of a feel thing."

Golden State trails the Houston Rockets by four games for the No. 1 spot in the Western Conference. The Warriors are a sparkling 40-10 with Curry this season, and would likely need him if they have any hope of catching the Rockets out West.

Golden State has been the top team in its conference in each of the last three seasons. This season, Curry is averaging 26.3 points, 6.2 assists and 5.1 rebounds per game for the Warriors (53-18).

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