Stephen Curry Foot Injury: Western Conference, NBA Title Fallout

Written By Mo Nuwwarah on March 22, 2022
Stephen Curry injury

A few months back, Stephen Curry was close to favored over the field to win NBA MVP. Most considered the Warriors an inner-circle title contender. As they say, life comes at you fast. What does the Stephen Curry foot injury mean for the Warriors going forward?

We’ll take a look at where they stand in the market and what sort of playoff implications this might have.

How Long Is Curry’s Injury Keeping Him Out?

Marcus Smart dove into the side of Curry’s leg in a play that looked eerily similar to the one that injured LeBron James a few seasons ago. You can see the injury here.

Curry came out of the game and didn’t return. Afterward, the team said he would need an MRI. The results came in early on Thursday and the news could have been worse, but it also could have been better for the Warriors. The team said he’d sprained a ligament in his foot. They had “optimism” he can return for the playoffs but the latest developments cast doubt on his availability to begin the postseason.

Injury analyst Jeff Stotts said on Twitter that he expects Curry to miss about a month or so.

That would leave Curry out for potentially the rest of the regular season. You can probably kiss any slim chance to win the division goodbye (current odds: ).

Without Curry, the Warriors have basically been a lottery team this year. Lineup numbers via Cleaning The Glass:

  • With Curry: +10.6 points per 100 possessions, 115.2 ORtg (77th percentile)
  • Without Curry: -5 points per 100 possessions, 107.8 ORtg (22nd percentile)

Expect the team to struggle mightily. Bettors will want to make sure spreads adjust sufficiently. In props markets, expect Jordan Poole to take on the most extra shot creation. He’s probably been the team’s second-best perimeter scorer this season.

How does Curry Injury Affect Playoff Outlook?

Even the start of playoffs looks questionable at this point given the extent of the Stephen Curry injury. The advent of the play-in does help the team a bit here by pushing the start of the main tournament back slightly. But, even if Curry plays in the first game, he may need some time to ramp up to his full minutes and/or effectiveness.

That looks potentially problematic given the team’s fall in the standings and the strength of the middle of the Western Conference. Already, Memphis has slipped past them for No. 2. With a game deficit and the far weaker team at this point, it seems unlikely the Warriors can overtake the Grizzlies.

That means the No. 3 seed looks like the best-case scenario and certainly the most likely. Utah and Dallas loom three and four games back in the loss column, respectively. Still, it’s tough to make up three games with 10 to play.

Regardless, though, the Warriors were in for a tough series in the best of scenarios. Current No. 6 seed Denver boasts the reigning MVP and could get massive reinforcements soon in the forms of Michael Porter Jr. and Jamal Murray. Slipping to No. 4 means a likely matchup with Utah or Dallas. Neither would be a picnic but Dallas especially looks problematic given Luka Doncic’s sterling playoff numbers in his young career and how well the team has played since trading Kristaps Porzingis.

According to the market, the Warriors remain among the best bets to win the NBA title at . But, given the mounting difficulty of their path, one has to wonder if that should remain the case.

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Mo Nuwwarah

Mo Nuwwarah got his start in gambling early, making his first sports bet on his beloved Fab Five against the UNC Tar Heels in the 1993 NCAA tournament. He lost $5 to his dad and got back into sports betting years later during a 15-year run in the poker industry. A 2011 journalism graduate from Nebraska-Omaha, he combines those skills with his love of sports and statistics to help bettors make more informed decisions with a focus on pro football, baseball and basketball.

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