Golden State Warriors stars Stephen Curry and Draymond Green have been excused from the team’s minicamp for family reasons, according to coach Steve Kerr.
“First of all, I want to make clear that this is a voluntary camp,” Kerr said after the team’s first practice Wednesday at Chase Center in San Francisco. “And so [GM] Bob [Myers] and I have both been in touch with Steph and Draymond and we are well aware of their circumstances. And so they both have important family issues to attend to and so they have excused absences.”
Curry and his wife, Ayesha, have three kids at home, while Green and his fiancee, Hazel, recently welcomed a new baby to their family. Kerr and his players did not sound concerned that Curry’s and Green’s absences would be an issue at all.
“Would I like them to be here? Of course,” Kerr said. “We know, we’re watching all these teams in the bubble; the ones that didn’t make the playoffs, even they got six weeks together to practice and play games and try different combinations and lineups. And we haven’t had that opportunity, so we’re just going to use the opportunity that we have here over two weeks, just like the other seven teams that didn’t go to the bubble, and we’ll try to make the most of this time, get plenty of work in.
“A lot of guys are going to get a lot better and really thrive in this environment. I’m not worried about Steph and Draymond; I know how hard they work and I know they’ll be prepared for next season.”
Curry played in just five games last season after breaking his left hand in October. Green played in 43 games while dealing with a variety of injuries.
“They’re home with their families and they’ve earned the right,” Warriors guard Jordan Poole said. “They’ve earned the right. They’ve played over 500 games in the last five years and everything that they’ve accomplished, they’ve earned the right for a little bit of time off, and D had a baby, so congratulations to him and his family and big bro over there, but they deserve it. We would love to have them here, but that was their decision and we’ll be here fighting until they come back.”
Warriors guard Klay Thompson, who missed all of last season while recovering from left ACL surgery, is expected to join the Warriors in minicamp later this week. Both Thompson and forward Eric Paschall missed Wednesday’s practice because they were “still going through league testing protocol,” according to Kerr.
“He’s doing well,” Kerr said of Thompson. “He worked out here at the facility for several days in a row, maybe four or five days in a row with [assistant coach] Chris DeMarco, and Chris gave me really positive updates. I was here for a couple of those days and got a chance to see him, and Klay looks great. And he’s anxious to play, so we’re excited about that.”
Kerr said the camp has been a good experience for players and staff members after being away from the game for so long.
“This has been a really tough six, seven months for everybody on Earth, really,” Kerr said. “With this pandemic and the way that it has affected everybody’s lives from a health standpoint, from an economic standpoint, from just an emotional well-being standpoint. So I think for us, for our team, it was really a relief to be out on the floor playing basketball again together. Competing, laughing, enjoying ourselves. The guys looked great. There was a lot of good energy and they had a lot of fun out there today. First time, really, that any of them have had a chance to play real basketball, other than just kind of one-on-one stuff, in a long time. So great to see them out there.”