Is Steph Curry Really Back?
It took all of 10 seconds to answer the question.
Stephen Curry made his highly anticipated return from a left knee injury with 4:20 left in the first quarter of Tuesday’s Game 2 of the Western Conference Semifinals against the New Orleans Pelicans. By the time the clock ticked past 4:10, Curry had already unfurled his first three-pointer. As it splashed through the net, the Oracle Arena crowd unleashed a roar that had been bottled up for over a month.cheap nfl authentic jerseys
The answer was yes, after a five-week layoff rehabbing his Grade 2 MCL tear, Curry was feeling confident. An immediate catch-and-shoot three from the left wing off a feed from Draymond Green. Was there any doubt? cheap authentic nfl jerseys
Actually, yes. Those closest to Curry—the professionals who know him and his body better than anybody—collectively wondered how Curry might look in his return. They didn’t need to look under the hood to get a sense of Curry’s health; they just needed to see how quickly he’d strike.
Ten seconds in, Curry’s long-time personal trainer and Accelerate Basketball owner Brandon Payne got his answer, leaving no doubt how Curry was feeling.
“He’s good,” Payne texted Bleacher Report from his lower-bowl seat at Oracle Arena moments after Curry’s first three.cheap nfl jerseys from china
In the week leading up to the game, Curry and Payne talked about the importance of making the first one to get into the flow early.
“Then it would be all downhill work from there,” Payne assured him.nfl cheap jerseys
Curry doesn’t want this season to end the same way it did in 2016, the last time he injured his MCL. That one was a milder case, a Grade 1 sprain in his right knee, but the MCL is critical to Curry’s game. The MCL stabilizes and supports the knee during lateral movements, which is a central weapon in Curry’s arsenal. Damaging it can not only cause pain but also limit mobility when trying to juke an opponent and create space for a jumper.
With a return in sight last week, Curry texted Payne to come out to the Bay Area and help sharpen his rhythm and his mind. And Payne, who has worked with Curry in concert with the Warriors’ medical and training staff, which is currently led by Chelsea Lane, since 2011, obliged. Curry would practice with the Warriors during the day and just after he put his two kids, Riley and Ryan, to bed at home, he would head to a Walnut Creek gym about 20 miles east of the arena. Payne would be waiting with his staff, which had made the trip from Charlotte to facilitate the workouts.