Golden State Warriors coach Steve Kerr says there’s “no way” injured star guard Stephen Curry will be available to play until the second round of the NBA post-season.
The playoffs begin on April 14 and Kerr said on Sunday that Curry will need more time to complete rehab on his sprained knee and get back into game shape once he resumes practicing with the reigning NBA champions.
“There’s no way he’s playing in the first round,” Kerr said.
The Warriors said on Saturday that they would re-evaluate Curry in three weeks after an MRI showed a grade two medial collateral ligament sprain in his left knee.
Curry also spoke to reporters prior to Golden State’s 110-91 loss on Sunday to the Utah Jazz and said he hopes to prove the coach wrong and be ready sooner than the second round.
“I am not going to let it be a defeating situation,” he said. “I treat it with a sense of humour.
“It is a tough turn of events but I will have an opportunity to play in games that matter in the playoffs and that is the focus.”
Curry said he is trying to keep his spirits high and look at the positive side of the injury that occurred in his first game back on Friday night after missing six contests with an ankle injury.
“It could be worse,” he said. “I count that as a blessing.
“Our team has been through a lot in the injury department. We all go through individual things but at the end of the day none of this is going to shake us from our ultimate goal of a championship.”
The revolving door on the Warriors’ infirmary is spinning.
The ailments also extend to All-Stars such as Draymond Green (flu), Kevin Durant (ribs) and Klay Thompson (right thumb).
Kerr said the others will all return “within the next week or 10 days”.
Curry hopes the others can get back on the floor as quickly as possible.
“We’ve got four All-Stars sitting in the back and one is at home. I will have some company but eventually I will be the lone solider out there and that is not a bad thing,” he said.
Curry also missed a half a dozen games during the 2016 playoffs with a right knee injury.
“We have to be ready to play without him and see how he’s coming along,” Kerr said. “The good thing is we’ve been through this.”