The Phoenix Suns were bad this year. Then they got worse after a series of injuries and intentional rest decisions.
The Golden State Warriors are seemingly stuck in a Sisyphean cycle of suffering and struggle, as they roll a roster riddled with injuries up the steep hill of the final days of this injury-plagued season.
Someone’s gotta win this one though, right?
WHO: Warriors vs. Suns
WHEN: Sunday, April 1 @ 5:30 p.m. (note the early game time)
WHERE: Oracle Arena
LISTEN: 95.7 The Game
Injuries are more plentiful than Easter eggs
The most important update is related to future hall of famer, Patrick McCaw, who took an extremely scary-looking fall last night and ended up getting wheeled out on a stretcher. Tests last night were encouraging, with initial results coming back clean (but more testing and an MRI are scheduled for today). Even as our thoughts and prayers go out to McCaw, the business of the NBA doesn’t slow down for Golden State.
At time of writing, the Warriors had not yet issued a full injury report. But it’s obvious that McCaw, Steph Curry, and Omri Casspi will be out. The one question mark for today’s game is Andre Iguodala, who got held out the last game after banging knees on a drive.
The Suns are in equally bad shape - although some of these may just be the team shutting down players, there are plenty of legitimate injuries to go around: Devin Booker (right hand sprain), Jared Dudley (left ankle soreness) and Elfrid Payton (left knee tendinopathy) are questionable. Alex Len (left ankle sprain), T.J. Warren (left knee inflammation) and Brandon Knight (left ACL tear) are out.
What to look for
While the season is pretty much over for the Warriors at this point since they have the #2 seed locked, that doesn’t mean there’s nothing for fans to see in games like this.
First of all, in light of the injuries, it looks like Kerr finally settled on what should be his starting lineup for the playoffs when he trotted out the starters last night: Cook, Thompson, Durant, Green and McGee.
Quinn Cook at point with Klay Thompson at shooting guard will probably see a lot of run this evening as our new backcourt works themselves into familiarity with each other. I mean ... there’s also not many other options at this point, with Nick Young and Shaun Livingston the only other remaining healthy options at the guard position. We could really use Iguodala’s steadying hand if he’s healthy enough to go.
Another fun twist is the emergence of Kevon Looney, who was the first big off the bench in Sacramento last night. After struggling to find a place in the rotation, Looney seems to be turning into the versatile “tweener” that every team wants these days. His long-armed, astute defense is sneakily effective. He’s recorded at least one block in each of the previous nine games - including a career-high six against these very same Suns just a few weeks ago.