Golden State Warriors guard D'Angelo Russell will be sidelined for at least two weeks with a sprained right thumb.

The Warriors confirmed the thumb sprain on Saturday following an MRI, with Russell to be re-evaluated in a fortnight.

Russell hurt his thumb in the third quarter of Friday's 105-100 NBA loss to the in-form Boston Celtics.

It is another blow for the Warriors, who have been ravaged by injuries during their woeful 2-11 start to the season.

Stephen Curry broke his hand in October, while fellow All-Star Klay Thompson is recovering from a torn anterior cruciate ligament sustained during last season's NBA Finals.

The Warriors acquired Russell from the Brooklyn Nets in a sign-and-trade after Kevin Durant's departure in free agency.

The Golden State Warriors have suffered another injury blow after it was confirmed guard Damion Lee has sustained a hand fracture.

Six-time NBA champions the Warriors are without a host of players due to injury, with Steph Curry and Klay Thompson headlining the list of absentees.

While Thompson has been out since tearing the anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee in June, two-time NBA MVP Curry broke his left hand on October 30 during a defeat to the Phoenix Suns.

Curry is set to undergo surgery, but claimed on Monday he expects to return before the end of the season.

The Warriors, who have appeared in the NBA Finals every year since 2015, have struggled at the start of this campaign, with Monday's defeat to Utah Jazz leaving the team 2-9.

Their 108-122 loss to Utah also brought more bad news, with the Warriors confirming on Tuesday that Lee had suffered a non-displaced fracture of the fourth metacarpal in his right hand. The team added the 27-year-old will be re-evaluated in two weeks.

Stephen Curry "definitely" expects to be ready to play again this season, with the point guard aiming for an early spring return for the Golden State Warriors.

Two-time NBA MVP Curry suffered a broken left hand on October 30 during a defeat to the Phoenix Suns, undergoing surgery to correct the issue.

Golden State plan to re-evaluate the injury in February, although Curry – who has won three titles in his career with the Warriors – is confident of making a comeback, declaring that "the rest of the season is not lost".

"I definitely expect to be ready to play. I don't know when – at some point in early spring," Curry told the media.

"It's just a matter of the rehab process. I've never broken anything and dealt with a hand injury like this, so as you go through all the examinations and that type of stuff, and obviously surgery was required to make sure the hand heals properly, that's a tough, tough blow.

"But [there is an] understanding there is a time frame where we can measure the rehab process, then figure out what the rest of the year looks like.

"I'm excited that, potentially, the rest of the season is not lost."

The 31-year-old confirmed he is likely to undergo further surgery before the end of the year, adding: "As part of the rehab, I have to get a second procedure done, at the beginning of December probably, and remove some of the pins that they put in there."

Without Curry and fellow long-term absentee Klay Thompson, who suffered a torn ACL in his left knee in June, the Warriors have struggled badly at the start of the new campaign.

A home loss to the Utah Jazz on Monday leaves them with a 2-9 record, an unusual situation for a franchise that has appeared in the NBA Finals every year since 2015.

"I love to play basketball," Curry said. "I love having fun. I know Klay does too.

"We're like some caged animals right now, ready to get unleashed back to what we do. Selfishly speaking, it should be fun for both of us, just to play basketball."

Golden State Warriors coach Steve Kerr has refuted suggestions star point guard Stephen Curry will miss the rest of the season due to a broken left hand.

Curry suffered the injury on October 30 during a defeat to the Phoenix Suns and, after undergoing surgery, was set to be re-evaluated in February.

However, a report on Friday suggested the Warriors have ruled him out for the remainder of the NBA campaign, partly due to their play-off hopes already looking remote.

Friday's 125-119 overtime loss to the Minnesota Timberwolves left them 2-7 for the season and second-bottom of the Pacific Division.

Kerr, though, says nothing has changed regarding the player's status, telling reporters: "I have no idea where that [report] came from.

"I talked to [general manager] Bob [Myers] and [director of sports medicine and performance] Rick [Celebrini] and nothing has changed on our front. 

"Steph will be re-evaluated in three months, and at that point, we will have an update. The plan is for him to be back on the court playing when he's deemed ready to go by our training staff. So that one was kind of a head-scratcher."

Kerr was adamant that the Warriors' struggles would play no part in their decision.

He added: "No, Steph wants to play. 

"We want to put the best possible product on the floor for our fans. People come from all over to watch Steph Curry play basketball. 

"And he's going to be bored. He's probably already bored. He's dying to play. 

"We were all confused by who the source was, because really, I would be a good source. 

"So I'm telling you now as your source, nothing has changed. Bob and Rick will tell you the same thing."

Stephen Curry underwent surgery on his broken hand in Los Angeles on Friday, the Golden State Warriors announced.

The two-time NBA MVP was hurt during his team's game against the Phoenix Suns on Wednesday, as he suffered a bad fall while going for a layup during the third quarter.

Golden State plan to provide a further update on Curry, whose hand became caught under Suns big man Aron Baynes, in three months - meaning he is unlikely to play again until February 2020.

The 31-year-old - a six-time All-Star - averaged 20.3 points and 6.5 assists in four games at the start of the new season.

His absence is a further blow to the Warriors, who lost Kevin Durant during the offseason and are also without long-term absentee Klay Thompson.

Steve Kerr admitted the Golden State Warriors are in a "tough spot" after star Stephen Curry broke his hand in the defeat to the Phoenix Suns.

Golden State's NBA season went from bad to worse following confirmation Curry suffered a broken left hand in Wednesday's 121-110 loss against the Suns in San Francisco.

Two-time MVP Curry – who had nine points, six assists and five rebounds – was forced to leave the court after falling on his wrist in the third quarter.

Warriors general manager Bob Myers told ESPN that Curry will have an MRI and CT scan to determine if he requires surgery and discover a recovery timetable.

Head coach Kerr addressed the injury post-game, telling reporters: "Obviously it's been a tough start on many levels.

"Just trying to find out footing and obviously this puts us in a tough spot. So, we will assess it and go from there."

Curry had his wrist caught up under Suns big man Aron Baynes after a bad fall attempting a layup midweek.

"Baynes came up after the game and just wanted to know how Steph was doing," Kerr added. "You could tell he felt really bad. It's just a random basketball play, so stuff happens."

It is a huge blow for the Warriors, who crashed to their third defeat in four games to start the season.

The Warriors are already without All-Star Klay Thompson as he recovers from a torn anterior cruciate ligament, while Kevin Durant departed for the Brooklyn Nets.

"It's a great opportunity for these young guys to play," Kerr said when asked about the added responsibility on the team's young players. "It's also a little bit too much.

"You want to bring along rookies the best you can. We have no choice with all the injuries. Where we are, we might as well throw them into the frying pan."

James Harden almost scored 60 points as the Houston Rockets won a high-scoring thriller against the Washington Wizards, while the Golden State Warriors' season went from bad to worse after Stephen Curry broke his hand.

Harden posted 59 points to lead the Rockets to a stunning 159-158 victory over the Wizards in NBA action on Wednesday.

MVP in 2017-18, Harden was 18-of-32 shooting while going 17 of 18 from the free-throw line as the Rockets registered a franchise-record score.

Rockets team-mate Russell Westbrook had another triple-double, scoring 17 points, 12 assists and 10 rebounds.

Wizards star Bradley Beal had 46 points of his own on 14-of-20 shooting, including seven of 12 from beyond the three-point line.

Curry, meanwhile, suffered a broken left hand in Golden State's 121-110 loss to the Phoenix Suns midweek.

The Warriors star landed heavily on his wrist in the third quarter and did not return as Golden State lost for the first time in four games.

It is another huge blow for the Warriors, who are already without injured All-Star Klay Thompson and Kevin Durant – who left for the Brooklyn Nets.

As for the Los Angeles Clippers, they lost 110-96 to the Utah Jazz after resting superstar Kawhi Leonard.

 

Siakam soars as Raptors roar

Pascal Siakam recorded 30 points for defending champions the Toronto Raptors, who topped the Detroit Pistons 125-113. Andre Drummond had 21 points and 22 rebounds in a losing effort.

Tristan Thompson posted 23 points and 10 rebounds in the Cleveland Cavaliers' 117-111 win over the Chicago Bulls.

Nikola Vucevic had 21 points and 13 rebounds as the Orlando Magic were 95-83 winners against the New York Knicks.

Kemba Walker put up 32 points, six rebounds and six assists as the Boston Celtics overcame a 19-point deficit to beat the Milwaukee Bucks 116-105.

 

Wiggins highlights Timberwolves' woes

Andrew Wiggins had decent offensive numbers with 19 points, but the Minnesota Timberwolves were minus-27 with him on the floor in a 117-95 loss to the unbeaten Philadelphia 76ers.

 

Sabonis sizzles

Domantas Sabonis had 29 points and a nifty move to the basket in the Indiana Pacers' 118-108 win over the Nets.

 

Wednesday's results

Philadelphia 76ers 117-95 Minnesota Timberwolves
Cleveland Cavaliers 117-111 Chicago Bulls
Orlando Magic 95-83 New York Knicks
Toronto Raptors 125-113 Detroit Pistons
Boston Celtics 116-105 Milwaukee Bucks
Indiana Pacers 118-108 Brooklyn Nets
Portland Trail Blazers 102-99 Oklahoma City Thunder
Houston Rockets 159-158 Washington Wizards
Utah Jazz 110-96 Los Angeles Clippers
Charlotte Hornets 118-111 Sacramento Kings
Phoenix Suns 121-110 Golden State Warriors

 

Nuggets at Pelicans

The New Orleans Pelicans are still trying to get their first win of the season and they welcome a talented and deep Denver Nuggets team for the late game on Thursday.

Stephen Curry has suffered a broken left hand in a huge blow for the Golden State Warriors.

Curry was forced to leave the Warriors' NBA clash with the Phoenix Suns after falling on his wrist on Wednesday.

Warriors star and two-time MVP Curry had his wrist caught up under Suns big man Aron Baynes after a bad fall attempting a layup in the third quarter midweek.

Curry – who had nine points, six assists and five rebounds when he left the game – went straight to the locker room with a dejected look on his face, with the Warriors later confirming the broken hand.

It is another huge blow for Steve Kerr's Warriors, who are without injured All-Star Klay Thompson following Kevin Durant's move to the Brooklyn Nets.

Draymond Green provided a scathing assessment of the Golden State Warriors' performance in their season-opening defeat to the Los Angeles Clippers, in which he believed they "f****** sucked".

The Warriors first regular-season game at Chase Center ended in a blowout 141-122 loss to the Clippers as they were given an indication of how difficult a 2019-20 season without the departed Kevin Durant and the injured Klay Thompson could be.

Stephen Curry had 23 points for the Warriors but it was a chastening night for Golden State, for whom Green briefly left the game because of a nerve issue in his arm.

Speaking in a post-game media conference, Green said: "I'm not a moral victory kind of guy, I'm not looking for something to build off on. We f****** sucked.

"Our defense was atrocious ... off the ball, on the ball, pick-and-roll, transition defense."

Steve Kerr was also in no mood to sugarcoat things, the head coach fully expecting there to be more games like this for a Warriors team entering a transition after five successive NBA Finals appearances.

"This is not a one off. This is more the reality of the NBA. The last five years, we've been living in a world that's not supposed to exist," said Kerr.

"Nine guys 23 or younger. We're starting over, in many respects.

"There are going to be nights like this this year."

Curry added: "[The] easy answer is it's one of 82 [games]. But there were some glaring things we need to correct to win basketball games."

The Warriors go on the road to face the Oklahoma City Thunder on Sunday.

The Golden State Warriors' first NBA game at Chase Center ended in defeat as the Kawhi Leonard-led Los Angeles Clippers stayed unbeaten.

After 47 years at Oracle Arena in Oakland, the Warriors relocated to neighbouring San Francisco in the offseason.

But their first competitive game in San Francisco did not go according to plan following Thursday's 141-122 loss to the Clippers.

Even without Paul George, the Clippers looked great on both sides of the court as Leonard, Lou Williams and Patrick Patterson all finished with 20 or more points to preserve Los Angeles' perfect start after two games.

Stephen Curry and D'Angelo Russell were good for the Warriors, but Russell did not do much after scoring the Warriors' first 10 points and Curry struggled shooting the ball throughout the game, going two of 11 from three-point range.

Reigning NBA MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo, meanwhile, became the first player in Milwaukee Bucks history to record a triple-double in a season opener.

Antetokounmpo – the first player since Oscar Robertson in 1966 with a 30-point triple-double in a season opener – finished with 30 points, 13 rebounds and 11 assists as the Bucks overcame a 16-point half-time deficit to beat the Houston Rockets 117-111.

Every single Milwaukee starter finished in double digits in scoring, while Russell Westbrook led the Rockets with 24 points and 16 rebounds in his Houston debut. 

 

Young stars as Hawks fly high

Trae Young had 38 points, nine assists and seven rebounds in the Atlanta Hawks' 117-100 win over the Detroit Pistons.

 

Reddish and Harden struggle

Cam Reddish's rookie year is off to a tough shooting start. He scored one point on 0-of-six shooting, including 0 of five from three-point range. He did have seven rebounds, though.

James Harden scored 19 points, but the Rockets star went two-of-13 shooting in the loss to the Bucks.

 

Harden and Westbrook reunite

Harden and Westbrook look like they will at least be fun together in Houston.

 

Thursday's results

Atlanta Hawks 117-100 Detroit Pistons
Milwaukee Bucks 117-111 Houston Rockets
Los Angeles Clippers 141-122 Golden State Warriors

 

Jazz at Lakers

Two teams that added big pieces this offseason face off in Los Angeles on Friday. Mike Conley joins Donovan Mitchell in the Utah Jazz's backcourt, while Anthony Davis teams up with LeBron James and the Lakers. And that is not even the half of it as Danny Green, Bojan Bogdanovic (who may be hurt), Quinn Cook and Dwight Howard are all finding their way with new teams. 

When Stephen Curry takes to the Chase Center court on Thursday, he will be all alone.

He'll have team-mates, coaches, a tough opponent in the revamped Los Angeles Clippers, as well as hordes of screaming fans packed into the Golden State Warriors' lavish new arena but, in terms of superstars, he will be the lone representative for a Dubs team in the unfamiliar position of starting a season without the prohibitive favourites tag.

With Kevin Durant gone and Klay Thompson on the sideline, perhaps for the entire season, with a torn ACL, this is unequivocally Curry's team.

Of course, it always was. Durant conceded he never felt like "one of the guys" at Golden State, who already had a tight-knit core led by Curry when the Warriors recruited the 2014 MVP to the Bay Area, and that was likely a huge factor in his decision to join the Brooklyn Nets this offseason.

Though D'Angelo Russell, acquired in the sign-and-trade deal that sent Durant to Brooklyn, will share some of the load, Curry will not have to cede possessions to anybody. The offense, freed of the need to accommodate Durant, will revolve around two-time MVP Curry, who will carry the majority of the burden of leading an undermanned Warriors team to the playoffs. 

Curry will relish the pressure on his shoulders, and he should also see a season in which there is a lot less expected of the Warriors as an outstanding opportunity to claim a third MVP.

With the Warriors roster lacking quality depth, Curry can expect to spend significantly more time on the floor, bolstering hopes of putting up the kind of numbers that will put him firmly in the conversation for the Maurice Podoloff Trophy.

What will he need to do to become only the ninth player to win three MVPs? To answer that question we looked at the Stats Perform data from his previous two award-winning seasons and the competition he will likely face in 2019-20.

 

BACK-TO-BACK MVP YEARS

Curry won back-to-back MVPs in 2014-15 and 2015-16, as he proved instrumental in helping the Warriors claim a first NBA title since 1975, which they then followed up with a record-breaking 73-9 regular season, only to lose to the Cleveland Cavaliers in seven games in the NBA Finals.

The point guard produced incredible statistical seasons to take the most coveted individual prize in the league in successive seasons. In 2014-15, he averaged 34.1 points, 6.1 rebounds and 11.1 assists per 100 possessions while playing 32.7 minutes per game. He also shot 44.3 per cent from three-point range.

In the following campaign, as the Warriors did the unthinkable and surpassed the mark of 72 wins set by the Chicago Bulls in 1995-96, Curry became the first unanimous MVP as he laid waste to defenses across the league. He joined the 50-40-90 club, shooting 50.4 per cent from the field, 45.4 per cent from beyond the arc, and 90.8 per cent from the free-throw line.

Per 100 possessions, Curry averaged 40.8 points, 7.4 rebounds and 9.1 assists while playing 34.2 minutes per game. He will need similar numbers if he is to reclaim the prize.

THE COMPETITION

Since Curry's last MVP, Russell Westbrook, James Harden and Giannis Antetokounmpo have received the honour.

It is Antetokounmpo's win that provides the biggest indication of what Curry will need to do statistically to take it from 'The Greek Freak'.

Last season Harden averaged a whopping 48.2 points, 10 assists and 8.9 rebounds per 100 possessions and still did not repeat as MVP.

Instead Antetokounmpo was rewarded for leading the Milwaukee Bucks to the number one seed in the Eastern Conference. Per 100 possessions, he put up 39.3 points, 8.4 assists and an incredible 17.7 rebounds.

With Westbrook joining up with Harden at the Houston Rockets, LeBron James and Anthony Davis forming a potentially formidable duo for the Los Angeles Lakers, and Paul George teaming up with reigning Finals MVP Kawhi Leonard on the Clippers, Antetokounmpo appears to be Curry's primary competition as the sole superstar on a contending team.

The level to which Antetokounmpo can dominate in every facet of the game means Curry will have to reproduce his 2015-16 brilliance to have a shot of dethroning him, and - as Harden can testify - even then it may not be enough.

However, that Warriors team had the likes of Shaun Livingston, Leandro Barbosa and Andre Iguodala on the bench, with their presence allowing Curry, Thompson and Draymond Green to get plenty of rest.

In 2019 Curry does not have that luxury. He will likely have less rest, but more of a window to put up the Harden-esque numbers needed to challenge Antetokounmpo. If he does so and the Warriors perform better than anticipated, Curry may be delivering another MVP acceptance speech come the end of the campaign.

Michael Jordan does not yet believe Stephen Curry has had the career to be considered a Hall of Fame player.

Several years ago Jordan said he would pick Scottie Pippen, Magic Johnson, Hakeem Olajuwon and James Worthy to play alongside him as an unbeatable team in any pickup game.

He was asked if he would stick with that selection in a wide-ranging interview with Craig Melvin on "Today". Jordan insisted he would not change those picks — not even for Curry.  

"I'm going in the trenches. I played against and with all these guys," Jordan said. "I'm going with who I know. Every single night, their responsibility to go out there and represent greatness, every single night." 

Melvin asked: "So Steph Curry shouldn't be offended when he watches this?"

"I hope not. He's still a great player. Not a Hall of Famer yet, though," Jordan said with a smile. "He's not."

Golden State Warriors superstar Curry, 31, is a two-time MVP and a three-time NBA champion.

He has averaged 23.5 points, 6.6 assists and 4.5 rebounds per game in his 10-year career.

Jordan, now 56, was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 2009 after he earned six championships, six NBA Finals MVPs and five league MVPs.

He also made 14 All-Star appearances in his 15-year career. The Chicago Bulls took Jordan with the third overall pick in 1984, and he went on to play 13 seasons over two stints before spending two years with the Washington Wizards. 

San Antonio Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich said he prefers Adam Silver's leadership to that of United States president Donald Trump.

Popovich was responding to criticism from Trump, who blasted the Spurs coach and Golden State Warriors counterpart Steve Kerr last week for their responses to questions about the NBA-China controversy.

Houston Rockets general manager Daryl Morey issued an apology for a now-deleted tweet, that read "Fight for freedom, stand with Hong Kong" amid the ongoing protests in the region.

While Popovich and Kerr unwilling to discuss the matter, NBA president Silver drew praise for his response after saying the league was "apologetic" but added that "we are not apologising for Daryl exercising his freedom of expression".

Popovich – who has been critical of Trump in the past – told reporters prior to the Spurs' 123-114 preseason loss to the New Orleans Pelicans on Sunday: "[Silver] stood by our nation and its principles. That's pretty huge in these days.

"Sometimes, it's kind of Orwellian. You think we're living in a place where, 'Is this really happening?' But that comparison was pretty stark when you put our president up against those leaders when he's with them or talking to him and how he reacts compared to the way Adam Silver reacted. I was proud of him. It was great."

Asked about Trump's comments, Popovich added: "All I did was make a comparison between Adam Silver's show of principle and courage in a tough situation, as opposed to how our president reacts when in the company of authoritarian figures, whether it's Saudi Arabia, North Korea, Russia or Turkey, whatever it is.

"It comes off as really feckless, impotent, cowardly by comparison."

Golden State Warriors head coach Steve Kerr said superstar Stephen Curry is ready to have a great season in the NBA.

Following the departure of Kevin Durant in free agency and Klay Thompson's knee injury in the NBA Finals in June, all eyes are on Curry for the 2019-20 campaign.

Kerr spoke with media after Golden State's practice on Sunday and was asked if Curry will be tasked to do more this season in the wake of Durant's departure and Thompson's injury.

"Just the usual," Kerr said. "I'm not looking for anything different than what he's done for five years, but what he's done is pretty special: two MVPs and a perennial top-five player."

Kerr went on to say Curry's had an "incredible camp" so far and thinks the two-time MVP is in position for a special season.

"To me, he's at his peak physically, mentally," Kerr said. "He's seen every defense that people have thrown at him now during his career, and he's ready to have a great year.

"He's in his prime age-wise, strength and conditioning-wise and defensively he's seen everything that's come his way... So he's kind of in his sweet spot right now, and he has been the last couple years. And hopefully that continues for the next few years."

While Thompson is not expected to return to the team until at least February or March, Curry will not need to bear too much of a burden as the Warriors signed former Brooklyn Nets guard D'Angelo Russell to a four-year, $117million contract during free agency.

"It's just the natural way of our offense and how we play," Curry said. "I'm going to have the ball in my hands a lot more. Just got to make the right plays, be confident, aggressive, assertive every possession." 

"Steph's smart," Kerr added. "And he realises what we've lost in the last couple of years from a veteran leadership standpoint. So he understands he's got more responsibility in that regard now."

The Warriors visit the Los Angeles Lakers for a preseason matchup on Monday, before Golden State open the regular season against the Los Angeles Clippers on October 24.

United States president Donald Trump blasted Golden State Warriors head coach Steve Kerr and San Antonio Spurs boss Gregg Popovich for their responses to questions about the NBA-China controversy.

Houston Rockets general manager Daryl Morey issued an apology on Sunday for a now-deleted tweet, that read "Fight for freedom, stand with Hong Kong" amid the ongoing protests in the region.

The issue has highlighted the NBA's relationship with China, which Kerr was noncommittal about on Monday when asked about the fallout from Morey.

Kerr and Popovich have been highly critical of Trump in the past and the country's leader was scathing of the NBA coaches.

"I watched this guy, Steve Kerr, and he was like a little boy who was so scared to be even answering the question," Trump told reporters Wednesday when asked about Kerr's refusal to discuss the issue.

"He couldn't answer the question. He was shaking. 'Oh, I don't know. I don't know.' He didn't know how to answer the question. And yet he'll talk about the United States very badly."

On Popovich – who was also reluctant to discuss the issue of protests in Hong Kong – Trump said: "I watched Popovich. Sort of the same thing, but he didn't look quite as scared actually.

"But they talk badly about the United States, but when it talks about China, they don't want to say anything bad. I thought it was pretty sad actually. It'll be very interesting."

Trump added: "I watch the way that Kerr and Popovich and some of the others were pandering to China, and yet to our own country, it's like they don't respect it.

"It's like they don't respect it. I said, 'What a difference – isn't it sad?' It's very sad. To me, it's very sad."

Made aware of Trump's comments about Kerr, Warriors superstar Stephen Curry – who has also been critical of the US president – replied: "welcome Steve to the club".

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