The Warriors — and by extension, the NBA — hinge on the health of Stephen Curry’s ankles

Stephen Curry’s latest ankle injury reinforces how his health will determine much of what happens this NBA season. (Kyle Terada/USA Today)

So much has changed for the Golden State Warriors, and the NBA as a whole, since the franchise exploded overnight into a championship contender at the start of the 2014-15 season. The Warriors have won two of the past three titles, and are the favorites to win a third. Kevin Durant’s arrival gave Golden State four of the 15 best players in the league — an unprecedented amount of talent in its prime on one team in the sport’s modern era. As a result, a handful of teams has scrambled to try to catch them, and another handful has decided instead to chase the future.

But for everything that has changed, one thing hasn’t: Golden State — and, by extension, this entire league — hinges on the health of Stephen Curry’s ankles.

Golden State rallied from a double-digit deficit in the fourth quarter Thursday night to beat the San Antonio Spurs, but everyone inside the organization and out was focused on Curry’s right ankle, which acted up for the fourth time this season —  and second time within a week.