Warriors

Curry injures ankle, Warriors beat Dallas 111-87

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Curry injures ankle, Warriors beat Dallas 111-87

BOX SCORE

OAKLAND The Warriors knocked off the defending champion Dallas Mavericks, who were playing their third game in three nights. David Lee, Monta Ellis and Nate Robinson led the Warriors, but it wasnt all good. Point guard Stephen Curry re-injured his right ankle in the second half and did not return.Warriors 111, Mavericks 87
Player of the game: Power forward David Lee had 21 of his team-high 25 points in the first half to lead the Warriors (16-21) past Dallas.Key stretch: The Warriors held the Mavericks to 15 points in the first quarter and led 26-15 after 12 minutes. The Warriors were never threatened after that.Curry hurt: Warriors point guard Stephen Curry injured his right ankle again this time midway through the third quarter. Curry was handling the ball near midcourt and was driving to his right.It was not clear if he stepped on a defenders foot or if he simply rolled it. But he came out of the game immediately and was in pain.He was also incredibly frustrated. First, Curry threw his mouthpiece towards the Warriors bench and then he smacked one of the seats on the bench as trainer Chad Bergman began to work on him.Eventually, Curry went to the locker room and was re-taped. He eventually came back and joined his teammates on the bench. The Warriors called the injury a mild ankle sprain and said his return was to be determined.Solid D: The Mavericks struggled from the field in the first half, going just 13-for-41 (31.7 percent) from the floor. They were even worse in the first period, shooting 27.3 percent.Nowitzki missed five of his first six shots, Jason Terry missed six of his first seven shots and Lamar Odom missed four of his first five attempts.Lees big half: The Warriors led 52-42 at halftime, and David Lee had a big part in it. Lee had 21 points and six rebounds in 19 first-half minutes. Lee went 9-for-13 from the floor in the first half and 3-for-3 from the line.Curry starts: Warriors point guard Stephen Curry was back in the starting lineup for Saturdays game against Dallas. Since returning from a strained tendon in his right foot against Toronto on Monday, Jackson has been bringing Curry off the bench and keeping Dominic McGuire in with the starters.No Kidd: Dallas point guard Jason Kidd didnt play on Saturday. Coach Rick Carlisle gave Kidd the night off since the Mavericks were playing their third game in three nights.No Biedrins: Warriors center Andris Biedrins earned a DNP-CD on Saturday night. Biedrins lost his starting spot during the Warriors last road trip, but he was used in backup role after that.Not on Saturday. Biedrins earned his first DNP-CD of the season.

Kevin Durant upgraded before Warriors' game vs Thunder

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USATSI

Kevin Durant upgraded before Warriors' game vs Thunder

Programming note: Warriors-Thunder coverage begins on NBC Sports Bay Area at 4 p.m. with Pregame Live and is streaming live right here.

Kevin Durant and the Warriors are back in Oklahoma City on Wednesday night. While Durant missed the Warriors' last game, it would be a major shock if he didn't play against his former team. 

The Warriors upgraded Durant from questionable to probable on Wednesday morning. 

Durant returned to Oklahoma City for the first time last season on Feb. 11, 2017. After spending his first nine seasons with the same franchise, Durant dominated his former team for 34 points in front of a wild Thunder crowd.

In three games against the Thunder, Durant is averaging 37.7 points, 9.3 rebounds and 2.7 assists. Through 15 games this season, Durant is averaging 24.9 points, 7.0 rebounds, 4.9 assists, and 2.2 blocks per game.

Playing in OKC is no longer a big deal for Durant: 'Just a regular game'

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AP

Playing in OKC is no longer a big deal for Durant: 'Just a regular game'

Kevin Durant in his first season with the Warriors faced three benchmark games, two of which were against the Cavaliers and, specifically, LeBron James. The third was his return to Oklahoma City, where Durant created his NBA legend.

With all eyes on him, Durant aced all three exams. He was individually better than LeBron, twice, and when he arrived in Oklahoma City last February, with thousands of emotionally wounded fans targeting him for ridicule, he ravaged his former team.

Durant totaled a team-high 34 points (12-of-21 shooting, including 3-of-6 from deep, 7-of-7 from the line), nine rebounds and three assists in a 130-114 rout.

So there will be no such dramatic backdrop Wednesday when Durant takes the floor at Chesapeake Energy Arena, and it is anticipated his sprained left ankle will have healed sufficiently enough to allow him to play. Regardless of whether he plays, hHs return this time simply will not generate the tremendous local turbulence it did last season.

“It was a pretty fun moment to be a part of,” Durant told reporters at practice Tuesday. “You always respect the players on the court. And the people that have stuff to say about what’s going on on the court, they really don’t matter.

“So I just tried to go out there and think about that. Just realize that the players on the court are the most important and I know if I don’t focus and lock in, I won’t play to the best of my ability. I tried to block out all the nonsense and the BS and just go out there and play.”

There should be considerably less BS and nonsense this time around, for this is a more evolved Durant and this is not the OKC team he left behind, shattered in a dozen little pieces scattered around a new solo act that was Russell Westbrook.

Westbrook now has two fellow All-Stars at his side. OKC general manager Sam Presti navigated offseason deals to acquire both Carmelo Anthony and Paul George. There is a sense that the reloaded Thunder can make some playoff noise, and that matters in the wake of a steep drop last postseason.

Having spent most of a day interviewing locals in advance of the Warriors-Thunder game last season, it was apparent those folks were heartbroken by KD’s departure but perhaps more crestfallen about what little was left of their beloved team.

Durant, who remains connected to some of his personal causes in OKC, seems to recognize that. It’s enough to assuage any unease he may have felt for the fans that once adored him.

Asked Tuesday if there was any lingering sentiment about returning to the place where he spent eight seasons, Durant barely hesitated.

“No, it’s just a regular game for me now,” he said. “I learned how to tune out the crowd. I learned how to tune out the b------t and just play. Just keep it at basketball and I’ll be all right.”

It has been 16 months since Durant woke up on the morning of July 4 and announced his decision to sign with the Warriors. Durant has adapted to the Bay Area. He drives the local streets, rides BART every so often and has his favorite spots. He has his hands all over the high-tech industry that drives so much of the energy here.

Durant has moved deeply into the next phase of his career and has his eyes on his post-career options. OKC was home for most of his NBA life, but he now lives elsewhere.

Kevin Durant is in a good place, in most every way, and he likes it.

“I’ve been in the league for this long and been in every situation as a basketball player: losing games, winning games, overtime games, winning a championship, losing a championship, MVP, coming in second in the MVP,” he said. “I feel like I’ve been through everything in the league as an individual player. All those experiences have given me knowledge and given me insight on the game and what it’s about.

“It’s pretty simple when you think about it. You work, you work, you work. You gain experience, you gain knowledge and when it’s time to give it to somebody else you do it. When it’s time to apply it to your game, you just apply it when you play. “

When KD steps on the floor Wednesday and sees George and Anthony behind Westbrook, he can’t help but feel the difference. He has moved on and so have the Thunder.

There is reason, good reason, to believe the man when he says going back this time is just another game.