Golden State Warriors Steph Curry Injury Discussion


The injuries continue to pile on for Steph Curry. He injured his left MCL in a game against the Atlanta Hawks a few days ago. His teammate rolled into his left leg.

He did not return to the game. Prior to any sort of injury knees being reported it looked at though he damaged either the MCL or the medial meniscus. It has been officially been reported as a Grade 2 MCL Sprain.

Anatomy Review:

The Medial Collateral Ligament (MCL) is also known as the Tibial Collateral Ligament. The MCL connects the tibia to the femur on the medial side. It provides reinforcement on the medial side of the knee. It also prevents the leg from overextending (inwardly).

There are three different grades of damage for MCLs:
Grade I: The ligament has been “overstretched” with tenderness and pain
Grade II: The ligament has a minor tear with tenderness and pain. There is looseness noted when it is being examined.
Grade III: The ligament has been torn. Often times the tear in the knee is associated with a tear of the ACL and Medial Meniscus.

In order to diagnosis a tear it can only be seen with an MRI. X-rays will be taken to determine if the trauma associated with the tear caused any bone damage.


What Treatment Looks Like:

His treatment is going to be 24 hours 7 days a week. He’s going to be in a brace to protect his knee. The first thing treatment is going to hope to accomplish is to decrease the pain. Following decreasing pain, the next goal is to restore range of motion in the knee if it has been disrupted. With decreased pain and improve range of motion the swelling should have decreased. And finally, we’re going to want to strengthen the knee in hopes of preventing any further damage as he makes his playoff run.


For pain relief and to help with the swelling, he is going to get electrical stimulation and [maybe] ultrasound.

There will be a lot of manual, via Active Release Technique, on the muscle and structures of the knee: quadriceps, hamstrings, adductors, MCL, and meniscus. The manual work can help with increasing range of motion and decreasing pain.

His strengthening exercises will start with very introductory level exercises such as quad sets, short arc quads, and long arc quads. He’ll follow-up with two-legged exercises such as squats, hamstring exercises, bridges, and deadlifts before progressing into the single-leg variations.

His rehab cannot solely focus on sagittal plane movements like the squat and deadlift but he’ll also need to work the front plane and transverse plane as well, because basketball requires a lot of different movements to be effective.

Furthermore, rehab must also address the hip and the ankle as well. Being able to strengthen the adjacent joints will also be very important in his recovery.


My Take:

I think he will miss the first round of the playoffs. There is a chance he could miss the second round of the playoffs too. Coach Kerr is adamant that Curry will not play in the first round of the playoffs, while Curry does hope to be able to play.

Assuming rehabilitation and treatment go well, there is an outside chance he is ready for the first round of the playoffs. But with no need for him to rush, because I think they’ll ease into round 2. I think there is an outside chance he’s effective in round 2 because the knee and the ankle are vital for his ability to move laterally, which his game relies on.


I think he’ll play in the Western Conference Finals. I just don’t believe he’ll be effective in Round 2 if he plays. Defensively I think he becomes a bigger liability and also if he plays could threaten of damaging the knee even more. But Curry’s ability to deal with pain and the effectiveness of his treatment will [obviously] dictate if and when he plays.

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