Andre Iguodala of the Warriors will make his debut against the Magic
The Warriors and Iguodala have been targeting a return for the second half of the season since training camp, but Saturday, which will be the Warriors’ 40th game of the season, became a more concrete date during the week past when Iguodala started. to play with the team.
Iguodala will play on a one-minute restriction, but it’s unclear what that will be at this time.
“I try not to get too caught up in that because then you start overthinking or pressure based on how many minutes you’re playing,” Iguodala said after practice Friday. “You just have to do what you can do with what you’ve got. Look at it as a whole, instead of just one night. . . . June is so much more important than January.”
After signing a one-year veteran’s minimum deal over the summer, Iguodala has been inactive with what the team described as managing a left hip injury.
Golden State knew Iguodala’s availability wouldn’t be constant this season, just as it wasn’t when he returned to the team in 2021.
Last season, Iguodala played in just 31 games during the regular season. Between January 18 and March 31 last year, Iguodala played in just two games. He rested on one end of each back that the Warriors played. He also missed 15 games during the postseason, 12 straight.
What Iguodala’s workload looks like moving forward beyond Saturday is still up in the air.
“The hardest thing when you get older is to build up games,” Warriors coach Steve Kerr said. “Like we saw with Andre last season, all of a sudden something swells up and you don’t even know why. I’m not worried about his production or his play. It’s more about preserving him long term. I know that will. help us win.”
The Warriors believe his value to the organization goes far beyond his impact on the court. He is credited as a “player-coach” and has become a mentor to the team’s younger players, especially Jonathan Kuminga.
“He’s such a freak athlete, he’s still in incredible condition, but his brain is his most powerful weapon,” Kerr said of Iguodala.
Iguodala’s return comes amid a stretch where the Warriors’ roster has been depleted.
Stephen Curry has been sidelined since Dec. 14 with a sprained left shoulder, though the team hopes to play next Friday in San Antonio.
On Friday, Curry practiced with the team for the first time since his injury, including contact and 5-on-5 work.
“It was pretty much no boundary today, the first real reps I’ve had on it … It felt good,” Curry said. “I feel like I haven’t lost too much in terms of conditioning … the whole plan has been to be ready when I’m ready … with this one, it’s about getting through most of the testing phase. So if I can do A few more reps and keep moving in that direction, I’ll be ready.”
Andrew Wiggins He’s also been out since Dec. 15 with an adductor strain and an illness, but he practiced fully Friday and is likely Saturday.
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