Warriors' Curry (knee) exits win in 3rd; MRI next

by 24USATVFeb. 5, 2023, 8:01 a.m. 24
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Steph Curry limps into the locker room after a collision late in the third quarter. (0:55)

SAN FRANCISCO -- Golden State Warriors guard Stephen Curry left the Warriors' 119-113 victory over the Dallas Mavericks at the end of the third quarter after suffering an apparent left knee injury.

Curry immediately received an X-ray, which came back negative, the team announced. He will get an MRI next.

Curry sustained the injury with 2:01 left in the third quarter after his left knee collided with Dallas' McKinley Wright IV's knee while Curry was defending him.

The Mavericks called a timeout, and Curry immediately limped to the bench where he was met by two team trainers. They examined him throughout the timeout, and as players returned to the court to resume play, Curry limped back to the locker room.

He was later ruled out of the remainder of the game. Curry finished his night with 21 points in 7-of-11 shooting and seven assists.

"Any time a guy gets an MRI, there's a concern level," Warriors coach Steve Kerr said. "We'll just have to wait and see the results. ... This has happened many, many times over the years. So fingers crossed he's OK."

Two nights prior, Curry banged that same knee in the second half of Golden State's game against the Denver Nuggets. Kerr said he isn't sure if Curry's injury on Saturday night is related to or impacted by that.

Before Curry's night ended, Kerr had planned on trying to cut down Curry's minute load because of a concern over how much he and Draymond Green have been playing. Kerr took Curry and Green out of the first quarter a bit earlier than usual and kept them in the second quarter longer to try and keep their minutes lower.

Earlier this season, Curry missed 11 games due to a left shoulder subluxation. During that time, the Warriors went 6-5.

"If he's out, then we move forward and we do have some games to look at, some game film to look at," Kerr said. "We'll be ready, regardless."

The Warriors were up 20 points at the time of Curry's injury. And up until that point had put together one of their best recent offensive performances. Seven Golden State players finished in double-figure scoring, led by Curry.

Draymond Green scored 17 points and hit three 3-pointers. Klay Thompson and JaMychal Green both finished with 14 points.

In the first half, Golden State scored 36 points in the paint -- nearly half of their points at the time, and tied for their second-most paint points in a half this season. Jonathan Kuminga, in particular, was strong at the rim scoring nine points on 4-of-5 shooting.

Ball movement, an integral part of the Warriors' style of play, was also a major factor in Golden State's strong start as they shot 20-of-33 from 50 points off passes in the first half.

However, the trend of Golden State struggling to close games continued. The Warriors were up 20 when Curry left the game, but the Mavericks cut the game to five with just over 90 seconds to go.

"I didn't think we closed the game well at all," Kerr said.

To Green, it comes down to a lack of focus in crunch time.

"When we get down the stretch, we stop doing the things that work," Green said. "When the game is going down the stretch, it's hard for Steve to get a call in every time, you're under pressure, it's intense, you're in the game, you're not really focused on what's coming from the sidelines. We've got to do a better job closing down the stretch."

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