Stephen Curry ignites Warriors in return

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The Warriors went 9-2 in Curry's absence, but were coming off of there worst loss of the season last night, an embarrassing 11 point loss to the awful Charlotte Hornets in which they were throughly outplayed. Fire him up in your season-long leagues, but you may want to be careful in DFS. He hoisted his signature tunnel shot, signed a few quick autographs when daughter Riley arrived to greet him and briefly held his arm around her before turning around to do his customary hallway sprint.

Golden State Warriors guard Stephen Curry celebrates in front of fans after scoring against the Memphis Grizzlies during National Basketball Association action in Oakland, California.

Golden State Warriors head coach Steve Kerr planned to limit his star guard's minutes Saturday night against the Memphis Grizzlies in his first game back from an ankle injury. Though Kerr's squad still won games at an impressive clip, the Warriors turned into a grind-it-out defensive-minded squad that scratched and clawed its way to wins while Curry was on the bench. "My plan is to play him in six- or seven-minute bursts". Golden State's 14 first-quarter assists - for 40 points - were one shy of the franchise record of 15, done three times.

Kerr is hopeful the extended rest for his star point guard now to get fully healthy will benefit Curry down the stretch and in the postseason for the defending champions. Kevin Durant had his customary 27 points but was just 8-of-19 from the field. "What's been different is we've been able to consistently put a bunch of 6-7 guys out there, so when we do switch there's not a height disadvantage. I just wanted to get some good reps, get up and down, see how my wind was and, surprisingly, I think my body felt way better than I expected". The Hornets scored 32 points off 18 Warriors turnovers. After the two teams were tied at 53 at halftime, the Hornets took control in the second half as they outscored the Warriors, 58-47 in the final two quarters.

"It's just plays that you make", Curry said.

Golden State got no closer than three points in the fourth quarter, and Charlotte's lead reached 95-81 when Jeremy Lamb scored a layup off a feed from Howard to cap an 11-0 run with 6:30 left.

The Warriors lacked both of those traits while Curry was out - just two of the issues that were highlighted by his absence, which showed that even this seemingly indomitable team has some flaws.

Nonetheless, Kerr has provided good coaching during his three-year span with the Warriors.