Golden State Warriors' forward Draymond Green is nearing a return back to the court, with the 33-year-old to be back within the team's facilities over the coming days.
According to ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski on Thursday, "Green will have satisfied the league's requirements to return once he is deemed properly ramped up to play."
Draymond Green's imminent return will be a boost for the Golden State Warriors, yet won't be without its potential issues
The former Defensive Player of the Year has been on an indefinite suspension since his latest unsportsmanlike act against the Phoenix Suns on December 12. Thursday's marquee matchup with the Denver Nuggets will mark Green's 11th consecutive game missed, with Golden State having gone 6-4 in his absence to date.
Green's return will be a boost for the Warriors who remain below .500 at 16-17, and could prove timely as the team prepares for a four-game road-trip starting on January 12 against the Chicago Bulls.
While the four-time All-Star will undoubtedly have a key role upon his return, there's still major question marks on the extent to which that stretches given his significant absence and the manner in which it came about.
Is Green a guaranteed starter upon his return? Jonathan Kuminga has started at power-forward in his absence, averaging an impressive 14.5 points, 5.5 rebounds and 2.3 assists on 55.6% shooting in the 10 games since Green went out.
"(Steve) Kerr told ESPN's Kendra Andrews that "there is a world where [Kuminga] can start for the rest of the year," as long as the third-year forward continues to play well and the team wins, Wojnarowski wrote."
There's also a world in which both Kuminga and Green start, as they did in the second-half of the Suns game before the latter's flagrant foul. The current Golden State starting lineup includes veteran point-guard Chris Paul and rookie center Trayce Jackson-Davis.
Besides his role, there's also the factor of how Green re-integrates into the team from a trust standpoint. He was suspended for five games earlier in the season after a chokehold on Rudy Gobert, with faith in Green clearly waning among fans and the league.