Andre Iguodala to make Warriors return, anticipated season debut vs. Magic

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Iguodala announces highly anticipated season debut vs. Magic originally appeared on NBC Sports Bayarea

SAN FRANCISCO -- Andre Iguodala is back. The Warriors veteran forward announced Friday on his podcast, "Point Forward," that he will be making his long-awaited season debut Saturday at Chase Center against the Orlando Magic.

He missed the Warriors’ first 39 games this season due to left hip injury management.

"We got 24 hours until I step on the court, man," Iguodala said to his co-host and former NBA player, Evan Turner. "Officially announcing it on 'Point Forward,' hope the fan base is excited. I'm a little nervous, but also I'm excited. ... Excited to get back on the court. A lot of folks have been asking.

"Patience is a virtue, and now we're here."

Iguodala, who turns 39 years old on Jan. 28, had Warriors fans wondering all offseason if he would retire or continue his storied NBA career after winning his fourth championship with Golden State. Many thought he would hang up his sneakers. If he were to return, it was sure to be as a Warrior.

And that's the decision he came to.

On Sept. 23, Iguodala announced on his podcast that he would return to the Warriors for his 19th and final season. He signed a one-year, $2.9 million contract to finish his career in The Bay.

Last season, Iguodala played only 31 regular-season games and just seven in the playoffs as he was hampered by injuries. In his 31 regular-season games, Iguodala averaged 4.0 points, 3.7 assists and 3.2 rebounds on 19.5 minutes per game. But his experience and knowledge was vital to the Warriors' title run, even with him in street clothes.

Since bringing Iguodala back, the Warriors have maintained their focus with Iguodala as geared towards the latter half of the regular season with hopes that he will be healthy for the playoffs. They never wanted to rush the process, and now they have another all-important voice on the court with 43 games remaining in the regular season.

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This was the plan all along, and Dub Nation is sure to give Iguodala a rousing applause when he steps on the court Saturday night.

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