Stephen Curry injury update: Comments from Steve Kerr throw status of Warriors star’s return into question

Stephen Curry has been out since October after breaking the second metacarpal in his left hand in an early-season game against the Phoenix Suns. He has insisted all season long that he planned to return, and earlier this week it seemed we finally had a date. Now, comments from head coach Steve Kerr have thrown that into question. 

A report from Shams Charania of The Athletic indicated that the two-time MVP would reportedly play on Sunday against the Washington Wizards — a date that matches the initial March 1 timeline that Curry publicly targeted for his return. However, on Wednesday, Kerr noted that he doesn’t believe Curry has done enough scrimmaging and said the official return date is still up in the air. 

“He’s only scrimmaged twice,” Kerr said. “In fact, I think he needs more. We’ll see how it all plays out. … Nothing’s official. He’ll play when he’s ready.”

“That (Sunday return) date has been something that’s for sure on Steph’s mind,” Kerr continued. “That’s when he wants to play, and he will when we all feel he’s ready to go. I think he needs some more scrimmage time. We don’t have much of an opportunity to do that given all of the games.”

Golden State’s season, which was already on thin ice even with a healthy Curry, was fully derailed after his injury. At 12-46, the Warriors have the NBA’s worse record by 4.5 games and are a virtual lock for pole position in May’s NBA Draft Lottery. Even a player as transcendent as Curry is unlikely to change that so late in the season, so the goal, for now, appears to be getting him reps in order to prepare for a return to contention next season.

The team Curry is joining is quite different from the one he played with early in the season. A number of the players Curry played with before getting hurt, including D’Angelo Russell, Glenn Robinson III, Alec Burks and Jacob Evans have been traded. Russell’s move, in particular, was the most important, bringing in former No. 1 overall pick Andrew Wiggins to serve as a running mate for Curry moving forward. His integration into Golden State’s system has so far been an unbridled success. He is shooting nearly 50 percent from the field and 48 percent from behind the arc while averaging 19.8 points per game as a Warrior, but fitting in alongside Curry will be his next test. 

Next season, the Warriors hope to return to championship contention with a healthy Curry and Klay Thompson joining Wiggins and Draymond Green on a revamped roster. As LeBron James has proven this season, a year off after an extended streak of Finals appearances can do quite a bit of good, but rest is no substitute for health. The Warriors need Curry back at full strength if they hope to re-enter the championship picture, and Sunday’s return will be a major step in getting him there. 

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