Editor’s note: Kerith Burke, NBC Sports Bay Area’s Warriors reporter, will take you inside the Dubs as only she can with the Ask Kerith Mailbag. Send her a question on Twitter or Instagram using the hashtag #askKerith.
HELLO EVERYONE! I’m imagining we’re sitting next to each other, and we are high-fiving and watching basketball. We’re happy! We’re in a crowd! We’re eating nachos!
I’m lucky I live by some open space where I can see green grass and trees. I’m going outside for walks to keep my sanity.
San Francisco’s shelter-in-place order to halt the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic came down on March 16. That order has been extended for the Bay Area until at least May 3. That was tough news to get, but it’s for the best to prevent the spread of the virus, protect people’s lives and keep the situation as manageable as possible for healthcare workers. Thank you to everyone doing their part to get us through this.
Let’s talk Warriors for a change of pace! All of these questions come from Instagram.
@Minwoo_kimm I think Klay’s rehab has been addressed before but how is he now? Is Klay still on the same timeline in his rehab process or has it been affected by COVID-19?
Warriors guard Klay Thompson has been unavailable to reporters this season, so I’ve only spoken to him on a few occasions. The memorable times were when he took over as the sideline reporter, and when I covered his jersey retirement at Washington State University. He’s not on social media much, either.
I mention this to say I’m not certain how he’s doing. But I can give you an educated guess based on what I went through when I had ACL surgery. The usual disclaimers apply: I'm not a doctor, I don’t know the specifics of Klay’s injury and recovery times can vary.
At the three-month mark, my physical therapist had me run on a treadmill. At the six-month mark, I was cleared for duty at work. I am not a pro athlete, however, and explosive cutting or jabs were not part of my day-to-day. It took me a year to feel “normal” again, and about 18 months to get over the fear of re-injury.
Klay has the resources of a pro athlete at his disposal, so my educated guess is he’s on schedule and feeling great. Nothing we’ve seen indicates otherwise. Practice video of Klay from early March shows him working out on a side court, sinking threes and jumpers. He was not cleared for contact, but he was around the team during the parts of practice the media could see. Involvement is good!
Klay had surgery on July 2, 2019. The Opening Ceremony for the Olympics was supposed to be this July 24 before it was postponed to 2021. There was a chance Klay would make Team USA’s roster, consistent with a year-long recovery and his hunger to get back on the court.
What is Klay doing now? If he has access to a hoop, he’s there. The final part of any player’s rehab is getting back to game speed, which is difficult during COVID-19’s social distancing guidelines. I bet he’s doing lots of cardio and as many basketball-themed workouts as possible to regain strength.
The final part of ACL recovery is the mental side. I remember seeing my progress during each physical-therapy session, but also being frustrated at the ways I could see my leg was weak.
For Klay, I imagine he was counting down the days to getting back on a court and now, who knows when that day will be. I feel sad for the frustration Klay probably feels about a delayed return to his happy place.
@chrisrosenthatl13 What’s your view on Marquese’s future with the Warriors? I see so many people adamant about drafting Wiseman or Toppin, and it shocks me, like they haven’t watched a single Warriors game this season.
Marquese Chriss has been a gem. Alongside a wounded Kevon Looney and Draymond Green’s occasional stints at center, Marquese has been a reliable, impactful addition.
The fact that the Warriors chose to keep Marquese and waive Alfonzo McKinnie at the start of the season, waive Chriss in January but make certain to bring him back AND give him a two-year deal shows they see him as part of the plan, at least for next season.
I expect the Warriors will take care of a guy who works hard for them, on a budget.
That said, I recall Steve Kerr said the Warriors will draft a center. Who they pick and in what round remains to be seen, or whether the Warriors sign a free agent, but I think that pick will join Marquese to fulfill an important role on the team. Under normal circumstances, the Warriors run a lot of offense through the high post. Having options at that position is beneficial. “Center by committee” has been the pattern in recent seasons.
@marinchef How are the young guys doing on their own? This has got to be hard on the single players?!
I follow everyone on the roster on Instagram, and their posts are clues about how they’re holding up. They seem bored!
I learned the training staff asked the players to complete 10 workouts a week. Eric Paschall posted an Instagram story from his bike, saying he can’t wait to get back on the court. Basic workout routines are the best they can do right now.
The Warriors’ young guys play a lot of video games. I don’t know how much time exactly, but in this story about the Charlotte Hornets, it was eye-popping to read WIllie Hernangomez is playing eight-to-10 hours a day.
Like you, I’ve been thinking about the young players who are far from home. Paschall is from New York. Jordan Poole is from Wisconsin. Ky Bowman is from North Carolina. Mychal Mulder is from Windsor, Ontario. If these players stayed in the Bay Area, I hope they’re not feeling strained or lonely.
The last time Kerr did a conference call, I asked him if the team is providing resources for players to handle the mental side of shelter-in-place orders. He said yes, and expressed how bad he feels for Mulder.
Even though guys can’t be around their teammates, it seems like a good time to be part of a team for people to lean on.
@thicc__nicck Hey Kerith! Are the Warriors players making an honest, real effort to stay game-ready, knowing the limitations of working out today but also knowing that they’re the only playoff-eliminated team? Wouldn’t really judge them if they went full give-up mode and ate hot Cheetos and drank beer haha
Ha, I wouldn’t judge either, knowing my cheese consumption lately. I’m enjoying some comfort snacks.
Based on their Instagrams and what it takes to be a professional in general, the guys are keeping in shape. It’s a must. For many of them -- rookies, minimum contract guys, former G League guys -- they know if they slip up, their futures won’t be long in the NBA. They worked hard to get here in the first place.
Steph Curry and his wife Ayesha have been posting workouts from their home gym. I’m jealous of their Pelotons. Did you see the video of Canon getting in on the action?
As far as we know, the NBA is coming back this season. Players know if they’re not physically prepared to resume the action, they’re going to be embarrassed. These are competitive folks to begin with. No one wants to look inferior.
@jacobshiffer93 What player do you think has the best survival skills to last a long-term quarantine?
Steph came to mind right away because of his resources. Strong family support, a nice house, the finances to stock up on goods and a positive disposition to get him through tough times.
Should society dismantle altogether and suddenly zombies are in the mix, he can outrun them or dunk on their faces. His line to Dr. Fauci would keep him up to date on the latest developments for survival.
@dannyfantasma30 Who is the better cook, you or your husband?
My husband, BY FAR. I’m not a complete moron in the kitchen, but I stay lazy and rely on the microwave or boiling water to shape our dinners. My husband whips things up from scratch.
We are eating well, thanks to his creativity. After he works a full day in his home office (a desk in the corner of our living room), he says he likes the mental switch to something completely different. More power to him. I am greatly benefiting from this arrangement.
@evenstrongerps4 What talent do you wish you had? #AskKerith
I wish I could speak Spanish fluently. For some people, this is not a talent, it’s a way of life, but I wish I studied abroad to become fluent. Right now, I have fragments of memory for vocabulary and verbs that I learned in high school and college. I need to take this knowledge further before it fades.