Kevin Durant resumed light workouts in his recovery from a calf injury, but the Golden State Warriors are not expecting the All-Star forward to be on the court for the first two games of the NBA Finals in Toronto.
Durant’s exercise consists of stationary shooting on his own, and head coach Steve Kerr said he’s not ready for full team workouts or 5-on-5 play.
“His next step is individual court work,” Kerr said Wednesday at a press conference. “That will be the next priority over the next couple of days. Hopefully, he can ramp that up, and then he’s going to have to practice. We have to see him in practice before he can play a game.”
Kerr also doesn’t know if center DeMarcus Cousins will be ready for Thursday’s Game 1.
Cousins is coming back from a torn left quadriceps muscle suffered in the opening series of the postseason. He has practiced on a limited basis and done fullcourt workouts since the end of the Western Conference finals.
Cousins still isn’t 100 percent, Kerr said, because he’s only been able to participate in two scrimmages.
“DeMarcus has done an amazing job coming back from the injury, which we felt at the time was season-ending,” Kerr said. “He has done an incredible job of rebounding, rehabbing, and now here he is. … He’s pain-free. It’s really more a matter of rhythm, timing and conditioning — all those things.
“I think I mentioned the other day that if this were the regular season, I would throw him out there and he’d play whatever minutes he could tolerate and we would build him up from there. It’s not the regular season; it’s the finals. We have to figure out what’s the best way to utilize him, how many minutes he can play, what the game feels like, what the matchups are like.
“Some of that will be determined by what is happening in the game, and the other stuff is just internal with our staff.”
Without Durant this postseason, the Warriors are 5-0, winning a closeout game against the Houston Rockets and sweeping the Portland Trail Blazers.
Durant is eager to return to the floor in part because he believes he’s being cast as a Warriors outsider.
“I’m just taking it a second at a time. Everything we do in the weight room, I just try to focus on that rep, not try to think too far down the line,” Durant said.
–Field Level Media