OAKLAND — The Warriors officially cleared Stephen Curry to play in Game 2 on Tuesday of their second-round series against the New Orleans Pelicans at Oracle Arena. This marks Curry’s debut after missing the past 5 1/2 weeks with a Grade 2 MCL sprain in his left knee.
“Obviously when you see any of our guys come back from injury, it’s an emotional boost,” Warriors forward Draymond Green said following morning shootaround on Tuesday. “To have Steph back out there, it definitely will give us a boost. Nonetheless, we still have to play the game.”
The Warriors have a 1-0 series lead against New Orleans, and Curry’s return bolsters the Warriors already superior depth with his outside shooting and floor presence. Warriors coach Steve Kerr has not divulged if Curry will start in Game 2, but he said after Monday’s practice that he does not have a minutes restriction.
Curry also encouraged the Warriors enough in recent days that they considered playing him in Game 1 on Saturday. But Kerr, general manager Bob Myers and Head Performance Therapist Chelsea Lane opted to sit Curry out for precautionary reasons. With Curry participating in his first full-court and full-contact practice on Friday since sustaining his left knee injury on March 23, the Warriors wanted to see how Curry’s body would respond with multiple sessions.
Curry participated in a full-court scrimmage on Sunday with a handful of assistants and seldom-used players as well as on Monday in a formal practice without any reported issues. Curry also participated in Tuesday’s morning shootaround, which involves a film session and a shooting workout.
“It’s definitely a different vibe in the air. He’s been putting in tremendous work. He’s worked so hard. Everyone is happy to have him back,” Warriors reserve guard Quinn Cook said. “I’ve been going against him last couple of days. It’s been tough. Every time I go against him, I pick up things and he’s helped me so much. All the work is paying off. He’s been working extremely hard. I’m extremely excited to see him out there.”
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