Warriors' Stephen Curry comes off bench in return

PORTLAND, Ore. -- Golden State Warriors star point guard Stephen Curry returned after missing four games with a sprained right knee and capped the Warriors' 132-125 win over the Portland Trail Blazers on Monday night with an NBA-record 17 points in overtime.

Curry, who is expected to be named this season's MVP with an announcement coming as early as Tuesday, entered with 5:58 remaining in the first quarter of Monday night's Game 4 and with Golden State down 16-2. He scored on a pair of jumpers before going back to the bench at the end of the period, and he finished regulation with 23 points.

His final line for the night was 40 points on 16-of-32 shooting from the field, including 5-of-16 from 3-point range, with eight assists and nine rebounds in 37 minutes. His 17 points in overtime are the most ever scored in overtime of any NBA game, regular season or postseason, according to ESPN Stats & Info.

Warriors coach Steve Kerr told reporters before Game 4 that Curry would be active as long as everything went OK during pregame warm-ups. Moments later, Curry did not appear to be hampered by the sprain, which he suffered in Game 4 of the first-round series against Houston.

The Warriors announced his availability a short time later, but he was not listed among the starters for the game.

"He's not really under a minutes restriction from [the] training staff," Kerr said. "It's more what he can handle conditioning-wise."

Curry missed Game 5 of the series against Houston and did not play in the first three games of the Western Conference semifinals against the Blazers. The Warriors lead the series 3-1 after Monday night's win.

Kerr had described Curry's status as "doubtful" on Sunday and then upgraded his status to "questionable" at Monday morning shootaround.

Curry had been out since he sprained his right MCL after slipping on a wet spot on the Toyota Center floor in the Warriors' Game 4 win over the Rockets. He had previously missed Games 2 and 3 in that series after spraining his right ankle in Game 1.

Curry was officially listed as active Monday just after he began his standard pregame warm-up routine, which begins with dribbling drills and moves along to shooting from around the floor. Curry went on to complete that routine, with no apparent incident.

When asked how the decision to make Curry active was ultimately reached, Kerr said, "Talking with Steph, talking with our medical people, and talking with [Warriors general manager] Bob [Myers]. That was the process."

Kerr was asked whether Curry would be on a minutes restriction, which he indicated was a possibility Monday morning. Kerr communicated that there would be no specific limit, although they would monitor Curry's conditioning.

"We really have to kind of do it on the fly," Kerr said. "And I would kind of guess that he would play in shorter bursts, but if he's rolling, then we'll probably let him go for a little while."

Kerr said that Curry did not influence the decision through lobbying.

"There was no campaigning," Kerr said. "We've been talking every day, so it's just a matter of today being the day that looks like he's ready to go. But, again, we'll see how he comes out of his pregame workout and go from there."

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.