Stephen Curry Exits vs. Hawks After Knee Injury Diagnosed as MCL Sprain

Timothy Rapp@@TRappaRTFeatured ColumnistMarch 24, 2018

OAKLAND, CA - MARCH 14:  Stephen Curry #30 of the Golden State Warriors works out prior to the start of an NBA Basketball game against the Los Angeles Lakers at ORACLE Arena on March 14, 2018 in Oakland, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)
Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images

Golden State Warriors superstar Stephen Curry left Friday's game against the Atlanta Hawks in the third quarter with a left knee injury.

The team announced he would not be returning to the game:

The Warriors announced Curry has an MCL sprain and will undergo an MRI on Saturday, per Kerith Burke of NBC Sports.

Curry hobbled off the floor after Warriors center JaVale McGee landed on his leg while attempting to block a shot.  

Curry, 30, has already missed 21 games this season largely due to recurring ankle concerns. In fact, Friday was his first game back from a six-game absence because of a tweaked right ankle. 

"It's weird not having Steph out there," Kevin Durant said while Curry was sidelined in March, per Nick Friedell of ESPN.com. "Steph is the system here, and he's been a part of this since Steve Kerr's been here," Durant added.

Indeed, Curry remains Golden State's engine given his playmaking ability, vision and marksman shooting from beyond the arc. The two-time NBA MVP is averaging a cool 26.3 points and 6.2 assists per game while shooting 42.4 percent from three for the season.

Curry, Durant and Klay Thompson are all shooting above 40 percent on three-point attempts this year, one of the many reasons the Warriors are nearly impossible to defend.

That trio, along with Draymond Green and a veteran bench, leads a Warriors team once again favored to win this year's title. While Golden State would still be a tough out without Curry, its odds of winning a third championship in four years would go down dramatically with its leader sidelined.

While Curry recovers, Shaun Livingston and Quinn Cook will see their roles expand. 

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