The Warriors came out of Denver with their first-round playoff series with the Nuggets tied 1-1, but not without paying a price.
They recovered after losing All-Star forward David Lee for the remainder of the postseason with a torn hip flexor, but point guard Stephen Curry, burdened with carrying the offense in Lee’s absence, turned his ankle during the second half of the Warriors’ 131-117 win on Tuesday.
Curry left briefly, but came back after the injury and finished strong, scoring 30 points to go with 13 assists for the game. But since then, Curry said the ankle swelled, forcing him to miss Thursday’s practice at Oracle Arena.
He said if Thursday had been a game day, he would likely have sat out, but that the progress he had made left him optimistic for tonight’s matchup in Oakland.
“All I can really do right now is try to manage the swelling,” he said Thursday. “And hopefully get it right by tomorrow night. Just got a little ways to go, but it should be alright for ?tomorrow.”
Curry has been through his share of ankle injuries over the past two years, as he missed much of last season after multiple surgeries on his right ankle. Though it’s the other ankle this time around, Curry said the experience he had with rehabbing last year will help.
“They didn’t have to go through the anatomy of the ankle and all that stuff,” he said. “I’m pretty well-versed in it by now. The things I’ve done to get back in a short amount of time before, I’ll stick to that plan because I know how my body responds to it and go from there.”
With their star player optimistic about getting back onto the court, the Warriors now focus on keeping their groove going following their offensive explosion going from Game 2. They had four players score at least 20 points, while shooting 64.6 percent from the field as a team.
Despite the strong showing, center Andrew Bogut said the team feels they should have come home with even more than they did.
“We thought we had a good chance to be up 2-0,” he said. “We let one slip in Game 1. But we still have work to do coming back home. Just because we have a great home crowd and great home-court advantage doesn’t mean we’re going to get this win easily.”
In the wake of such an impressive performance, however, the Warriors’ floor leader saw no reason to fix something that clearly isn’t broken.
“Stick with what worked in Game 2,” Curry said of the game plan. “That’s our lineup we have to work with now. I’m sure Denver’s going to make some adjustments defensively. We scored 131 points, so you would assume that they would try to do something differently, so we’ll have to see what that is as the game goes on. But for us, we’ll be aggressive with whatever type of lineup we go with throughout the course of ?the game.”
Warriors at Denver, TBD ?(TNT, CSNBA)