Klay Thompson out, other stars questionable for Warriors game in Denver

Klay Thompson out, other stars questionable for Warriors game in Denver

DENVER — Stephen Curry recently made a point to set the record straight on load management.

The Warriors star believes there’s a misconception with the buzzword that has some fans up in arms in recent seasons.

Rarely is it ever the player going to the training staff and campaigning to take a night off. Curry said he would play every game if he had it his way. Klay Thompson and Draymond Green would, too.

But the reality is that those three aren’t in their 20s anymore and it’s harder the older they get, especially after making it to six of the last eight NBA Finals, to withstand the wear-and-tear of a grueling 82-game regular season while also maintaining enough in the tank for a potential postseason run.

The Warriors have played it extra safe with Thompson, who tore his ACL in 2019 and ruptured his Achilles tendon in 2020. He has yet to play in both ends of a back-to-back since returning to the lineup last January. That trend continued Thursday when he was listed as out on the team’s injury report for their game in Denver on the second night of a back-to-back.

Curry and Green’s statuses were also questionable for the tilt against the top-ranked Nuggets. Curry is dealing with soreness in his left shoulder, which he partially dislocated in December resulting in him missing a month of action. Green has soreness in his right foot.

Meanwhile, Andre Iguodala, 39, will miss his 10th straight game with right hip soreness after playing in only three games last month.

Coach Steve Kerr said the conversations about keeping a player out for longevity concerns are usually met with little-to-no pushback.

“In most cases, [when] we keep a guy out, it’s because he’s banged up and we’re trying to protect him from himself,” Kerr said. “Our training staff feels like if we overdue it then it can’t affect them for a bunch of games thereafter. It can cause injury, there’s a reason to be cautious and safe but we have to make that determination because our players want to be out there every night.”

Kerr empathizes with frustrated out-of-town fans, who only get the chance to see some of their favorite players once or twice in a season. But he’s often offered a solution to load management: Less games.

Kerr recently said he believes a 70-game regular-season slate would be much more manageable for players and lead to less disappointment for fans.

Thursday will mark the completion of the Warriors’ 11th of 15 sets of back-to-backs. Curry hasn’t completed five back-to-back sets this season. Green has sat out the backend of three of them.

Curry recently said he anticipated playing in Denver.

“I usually campaign to play every game. That’s the misconception of load management and how it goes,” Curry said. “It’s never the play that’s usually saying, ‘Hey, I want to sit.’ For all those people that are worried about that part of our league and all that. It’s usually not the players going to the training staff and saying, ‘Hey, I don’t have it tonight.’ It’s usually the other way around. And there’s a lot of science involved, so yes. I will campaign to play and we’ll see how it goes.”


Spread the love