Stephen Curry isn’t worried about his eventual return from a Grade 2 MCL sprain.
He knows it will come at some point in the playoffs, perhaps by the end of the first round. If not, then by the start of the second round for sure. And whenever he returns, he’s confident he’ll be fine—impactful and normal and strong as ever.
As he told SI.com’s Jarrel Harris:
JH: Why shouldn’t Warriors/Stephen Curry fans worry about your injury and your team as a whole with the playoffs near?
SC: Injuries are tough and they a part of the game, but for me I know I will be back. I have come back from injuries strong before and I will do it again. Our team is equipped to go out and win playoff games without me. I am working my butt off to back on the court as soon as possible and being close to 100 percent as I can to come back and from there, it’s all about winning a championship.
People often point to his return from injury during the 2016 postseason as evidence that the Golden State Warriors should be concerned. After all, he wasn’t himself. And the Warriors collapsed against the Cleveland Cavaliers in the NBA Finals.
Here’s the dirty little secret, though—or rather, here’s the reality of that situation many tend to forget: While Curry may not have been himself, he wasn’t a shell of himself either. In the 16 games he played following his injury, he averaged 26.4 points and 5.4 assists per game while slashing 43.7/40.2/91.7. He was a little less efficient during the NBA Finals, but even then, he still shot 40 percent from beyond the arc on absurd volume.
Ergo, if the Warriors get something other than the best version of Curry this time around, they’ll be fine. They were almost fine in 2016, and this year, unlike that year, they have Kevin Durant to pick up whatever slack he leaves behind.