By sweeping the Portland Trail Blazers, the Golden State Warriors have given themselves plenty of time to rest and recover before the NBA Finals tip off on May 31.
That is welcome news for do-it-all forward Andre Iguodala, who is nursing a left calf injury. Iguodala did not practice with the team Thursday, but head coach Steve Kerr said he expects the former Arizona standout to play in Game 1 of the Finals.
Andre Iguodala didn’t practice today, but “we expect him to be OK by Game 1,” Steve Kerr said.— Anthony Slater (@anthonyVslater) May 23, 2019
The injury caused Iguodala to miss Game 4 against the Blazers, though the Warriors still managed to win in overtime, despite being without starters Kevin Durant (calf) and DeMarcus Cousins (quad) as well.
The prognosis on Durant and Cousins isn’t so promising. Durant, who got injured in the Western Conference Semifinals, has not been cleared to begin on-court activities and it is “unlikely that he will play at the beginning of the 2019 NBA Finals, but it’s hopeful that he could return at some point during the series,” the Warriors announced.
Cousins has been out since April 16 and “he will play at some point during the 2019 NBA Finals, but the exact date is to be determined and depends on his progress,” per the Warriors.
Their uncertainty makes Iguodala’s return all the more important.
The Warriors will play the Toronto Raptors or the Milwaukee Bucks in the Finals. Those teams are currently tied 2-2 in the Eastern Conference Finals.
Golden State is searching for its third straight NBA championship. The Warriors have reached the Finals five straight seasons.