Despite taking a blow to his damaged left shin for the second time in three games, Warriors star Stephen Curry insists it’s not as bad as it looked when he limped off in the third quarter Tuesday night in Los Angeles.
After all, he returned to play for another four minutes before leaving for good later in the third quarter of a 109-88 win over the Lakers at Staples Center.
“It’s just frustrating and annoying and any other adjective you want to throw in there,” Curry said of the injury, described as a contusion, which initially was incurred on Dec. 28 against the Kings.
“Long-term it’s not something that I have to worry about; it’s just playing through an injury. It’s there. It doesn’t get worse if I play on it, unless I get kicked, and that’s happened three times since I did it. Hopefully it won’t keep happening again.”
The 6-foot-3, 185-pound guard, while dropping in a layup, banged his shin against the leg of 7-foot-2, 290-pound Lakers center Roy Hibbert with 7:39 left in the third quarter and immediately began hobbling, after which the Warriors called a timeout.
Curry lobbied his way back in for a few minutes, during which he nailed a 3-pointer as the Warriors expanded a 13-point lead to 33. He then excused himself.
“I wasn’t going to put him back out there at first, but he was pretty adamant about it,” interim coach Luke Walton said. “I asked the trainers, they said he was good, so I let him go back out. If he wants to play and the staff says he can’t go, then you take it out of his hands, but they said he was good to go.”
Told that complete healing could take up to four weeks, Curry said he plans to play through the discomfort while he recovers.
“I’m not going to sit out four weeks,” he said, “so I’ve just got to figure out how to protect it when I’m out there on the floor and keep playing. We’ve done a good amount but just had a couple unlucky plays. We’ll keep addressing, keep treating it. I’ll keep playing and, hopefully, over time get through it.”