Warriors

Warriors' Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson questionable vs. Rockets in Game 1

Warriors' Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson questionable vs. Rockets in Game 1

OAKLAND - Fewer than 24 hours before the Warriors begin the Western Conference semifinals against the Houston Rockets, Golden State faces uncertainty as both Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson are questionable for Game 1 Sunday afternoon with ankle injuries. 

"He's okay," Warriors coach Steve Kerr said when asked about Thompson's status Saturday afternoon. "He and Steph both came in this morning to get some treatment but I haven't even spoken with [Warriors director of sports medicine and performance Rick Celebrini] today." 

While Curry - who rolled his ankle in of Friday's 129-110 Game 6 victory against the Clippers - finished the game, Thompson left in the third quarter and had a very noticeable limp as he walked out of Staples Center on Friday night. 

Throughout his career, Thompson has been a model of consistency. He missed just one game during the first three years of his NBA career and has never played fewer than 73 games in a season. In Game 1 of last year's NBA Finals, Thompson went down with what looked to be a significant ankle sprain after colliding with Cleveland Cavaliers guard JR Smith. He didn't miss any games, though. and helped the Warriors to their second straight title. 

Following Friday's win, Thompson said he "fully anticipated" to play in Game 1. Still, Kerr wasn't willing to make a declaration, either way, Saturday afternoon. 

"I'm not going to make a definitive statement on if they're going to play, so let's just call it questionable," Kerr said. "There's nothing implied there. It's just they both got in and got some work, and we'll see how they're doing tomorrow."

[RELATED: Iguodala will be key for Dubs to get past Harden, Rockets]

Minutes before Kerr began his media availability, The Athletic's Marcus Thompson reported that Thompson's injury was "pretty bad" and could keep him out of Game 1 and beyond. When asked about the report, Kerr acknowledged the severity of the injury, but wouldn't divulge anything further. 

"I love when reports come out that I don't even know," Kerr joked. "The reports are - they have better sources than I do. But it was a significant sprain last night, he was limping so, as I said, we'll see how he's doing tomorrow." 

NBA rumors: Dwight Howard, Lakers have 'mutual interest' in reunion

NBA rumors: Dwight Howard, Lakers have 'mutual interest' in reunion

The domino effect of DeMarcus Cousins' torn ACL has begun. The Lakers went from a bruising center who can dish and drain 3-pointers to a possible wild reunion in Hollywood. 

Los Angeles reportedly is interested in bringing back center Dwight Howard, and there's mutual interest between the two sides, The Athletic's Shams Charania reported Sunday morning. 

Howard, who turns 34 in December, was traded by the Wizards to the Grizzlies this offseason, but Memphis is expected to eventually release the three-time Defensive Player of the Year. Howard has every accolade a player would want, but his abilities are stuck in the past. 

The big man played just nine games last year for the Wizards where he averaged 12.8 points and 9.2 rebounds per game before injuries derailed his season. Injuries and basketball turning into more of a perimeter game have diminished Howard's value in recent seasons. 

He's also played for the Lakers once before and that turned out to be a disaster. Howard averaged 17.1 points and 12.4 rebounds per game for the Lakers in the 2012-13 season, but L.A. was swept by the Spurs in the first round of the playoffs. 

The Lakers' only true center on their roster currently is JaVale McGee, who is best used as a lob threat off the bench. It's hard to imagine either Howard or McGee as a solid starter at this point in their careers.

Losing Cousins clearly is a big blow to the Lakers. It could also help the Warriors' in their push for a higher playoff seed and the Kings as a team fighting to end a 13-year postseason drought. 

[RELATED: Cousins needs ex-Warriors teammates' support after torn ACL]

The Lakers have sky-high expectations with LeBron James and Anthony Davis teaming up. Nobody expected Howard to be on the same squad. 

Now, the Warriors and Kings can take advantage of the loss of their former center.

Bob Myers explains what attracted Warriors to D'Angelo Russell trade

Bob Myers explains what attracted Warriors to D'Angelo Russell trade

The Warriors were about to lose Kevin Durant for nothing in free agency this summer. Then general manager Bob Myers pivoted and pulled out a sign-and-trade to acquire All-Star point guard D'Angelo Russell from the Brooklyn Nets for Durant.

The move caught many by surprise and led to speculation that the Warriors only acquired Russell with the intention of flipping him for other assets.

Myers recently rejected the idea that the Warriors took Russell just to trade him, and this week, he talked to The Athletic's Tim Kawakami about going into his free agency meeting with Durant, and his mindset once KD told him he was leaving Golden State.

"From that point on, the motivation going in and leaving, obviously leaving, I left with a certainty that [Durant] wasn't coming back," Myers said on The TK Show. "Going in, my job, our job as a front office, is to prepare for what if Kevin does come back and what if Kevin doesn't come back. It wasn't necessarily an immediate pivot to D'Angelo.

"It was, 'These are our options if Kevin doesn't come back. What can we do?' And for the people listening, it was simple. Either we do something like we did, which was more aggressive, whether it would have been that or something else, or another formulation of a sign-and-trade or using a huge trade exception, or we stand pat and signing a taxpayer mid-level. Those were the two pivot points. We obviously went the way we did."

Russell isn't the game-changing, Hall of Fame talent that Durant is, but he’s coming off his first NBA All-Star Game appearance, and set career highs in points per game, assists per game, field-goal percentage and 3-point percentage last season.

For Myers and the Warriors, there are things to like about what Russell brings to the team.

"The attraction for us was, what's very hard in our business and in any sport is, how do you get a talented, young player?" Myers said. "It's very difficult. How do you do it in my job or the front office? Usually it's through the draft or a trade. And most times you try to trade for a guy that's young and good, you have to give up something that's easier, either a guaranteed high pick or a lottery guaranteed pick, or a good player or a combination of players. It's hard to do.

"We saw an opportunity to do it. That's why we did it. And that's the direction we went in. The other direction would have been not to do that and stay the course and see where that went. But we chose the path, and we're pretty happy with it."

Despite losing Durant, the Warriors were able to replace him with an All-Star-caliber player who’s just 23 years old.

[RELATED: Russell working with Steve Nash]

Russell, Steph Curry and Draymond Green will have to hold down the fort in the Bay until Klay Thompson recovers from his torn ACL. Once the five-time All-Star returns, the Warriors will possess one of the most dynamic backcourts in the NBA.

That's something Myers and Co. definitely have to feel good about.