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NBA Golden State Warriors

Andre Iguodala Important to Golden State Warriors, But Must Be Eased Back in Return

Andre Iguodala Warriors Spurs

Kyle Terada – USA Today Sports Images

The Golden State Warriors received a pleasant boost earlier this week when they found out that they would be getting star guard and prized free-agent signing from this past offseason, Andre Iguodala, was returning to the lineup. Iguodala had missed 12 previous games with a hamstring injury.

He played only 17 minutes in his initial game back to action and, though he didn’t put up fantastic numbers, it was clear how he positively impacts this team. He immediately helped improve this Warriors team’s spacing and movement on the offensive end of the floor, as well as expectedly improving Golden State’s defensive effort, particularly on the perimeter.

However, the Warriors seemingly thought that Iguodala was ready to assume his former role on Thursday night against the San Antonio Spurs. In the contest, Iggy played 31 minutes, but his impact wasn’t as greatly felt. He helped with the spacing and defensively once again to a degree, but he also seemed to disappear at times and also contributed to Golden State’s turnover problems on the evening.

Despite the fact that Tony Parker, Tim Duncan and Manu Ginobili were all sitting out, the Spurs were able to pull out the victory over Golden State. While Iguodala wasn’t totally the problem, he seemed to be a bit slow and ineffective for much of the night.

Though I understand and fully recognize the importance of Iguodala to this Warriors team and also get that the Spurs, even without their stars, are still a disciplined and well-coached team, this game brought to light the fact that Golden State needs to be careful with Iguodala as he returns from injury. I don’t exactly think that re-injury is a huge issue, but I do think it will take some time for Iggy to shake off some rust and get re-acclimated to game action. He’ll be back and so will the Warriors, but Golden State also can’t rush that.

Cody Williams is a Senior Writer with Rant Sports. Follow Cody on Twitter @TheSizzle20, add him on Google and like his Facebook page.