Warriors' Stephen Curry off Minutes Restriction After Injury, Likely to Start Game 5

Adam WellsApril 26, 2022

Golden State Warriors guard Stephen Curry (30) in the second half of Game 3 of an NBA basketball first-round Western Conference playoff series Thursday, April 21, 2022, in Denver. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)
AP Photo/David Zalubowski

As the Golden State Warriors look to close out the Denver Nuggets on Wednesday, Stephen Curry could end up playing a bigger role in the series. 

Head coach Steve Kerr told reporters Curry is no longer on a minutes restriction after his foot injury. 

Kerr didn't announce if Curry would start Game 5 against the Nuggets, but it is a possibility he will be in the starting five for the first time in the series. 

Curry suffered a sprained ligament in his left foot during Golden State's 110-88 loss to the Boston Celtics on March 16. He missed the final 12 games of the regular season. 

There was initially some skepticism about Curry's availability for the start of the postseason. He wound up being ready for Game 1 against the Nuggets, but Kerr used him off the bench for the first time since a playoff game against the New Orleans Pelicans in May 2018. 

Curry has come off the bench in each of the first four games in this series. The eight-time All-Star has seen his minutes increase with each subsequent game, going from 22 minutes in Game 1 to 37 minutes in Game 4. 

The Warriors won each of the first three games against the Nuggets. Denver was able to keep the series alive with a 126-121 win in Game 4 on Sunday. 

Kerr has relied a lot on a three-guard lineup against Denver with Curry, Jordan Poole and Klay Thompson on the floor together. Poole has been a breakout star so far in the postseason. The 22-year-old shot over 60 percent from the field in each of the first three games and is averaging 24.3 points per contest. 

Curry is averaging 27.5 points and 5.5 rebounds per game in the series. He is shooting 51.4 percent from the field (38.9 percent from three-point range). 

If Curry moves into the starting lineup for Game 5, he could take Kevon Looney's spot if Kerr wants to stick with the three-guard group. Poole could also be moved to the bench to give Golden State's reserve unit a little more punch. 

The Warriors will look to close out the Nuggets at the Chase Center in Game 5 on Wednesday at 10 p.m. ET.