OAKLAND (California) • Just when the Golden State Warriors thought their injury woes were easing, they took a turn for the worse.
All-star point guard Stephen Curry suffered a left knee strain in his first game back from an ankle injury as the under-manned Warriors beat the Atlanta Hawks 106-94 in the National Basketball Association (NBA) on Friday.
But no one wanted to talk about the victory, as all the focus narrowed on the health of two-time Most Valuable Player Curry, who was injured when he collided with team-mate JaVale McGee under the basket. He had just returned from a six-game injury layoff.
"It is kind of a strange, cruel twist of fate," said Warriors coach Steve Kerr. "He rehabs his ankle for the last couple weeks, he gets that strong and then the knee goes. So we'll see what happens and we'll keep our fingers crossed."
The team said Curry sprained his medial collateral ligament and was scheduled for an MRI yesterday. It is uncertain how long he will be out.
"It's a little sombre in there. Everybody feels for Steph," Kerr added. "He's in good spirits. I did talk to him. He's disappointed. "
The beat-up NBA champions Warriors were already without Kevin Durant, who suffered a rib cartilage injury last week. Klay Thompson is recovering from a fractured right thumb and Draymond Green suffered a pelvic contusion in Monday's loss at San Antonio.
Games Stephen Curry missed with a right ankle injury before his comeback attempt against Atlanta.
On Friday, Curry scored 29 points in 25 minutes against the Hawks at Oracle Arena. The guard frowned as he hobbled to the bench with 3min 9sec left in the third quarter. He sat and put his head down before going to the locker room.
"Getting close to post-season, you don't want to see nothing like that," said guard Nick Young, with the Warriors (54-18) in second place in the Western Conference behind the Houston Rockets (58-14).
The NBA play-offs begin on April 14, with the Boston Celtics also sweating over their star's fitness.
Kyrie Irving was set to undergo surgery on his troublesome left knee yesterday. The guard has not played since a March 11 game against the Indiana Pacers.