Warriors guard Monta Ellis is "leaning toward" returning to action tonight against the visiting Portland Trail Blazers.

Ellis missed the past six games with a flare-up of a chronic back injury. He practiced fully Wednesday and said his availability will be based on how his back responds to his first activity in 12 days.

"See how I feel in the morning after the workout," Ellis said after practice. "I'm leaning toward playing. But, like I said, it depends on how I wake up in the morning."

Ellis said he has a spine condition that bothers him periodically, though not always severe enough to keep him out. It's something he's dealt with since high school, he said.

Ellis said it was frustrating watching the Warriors on the five-game road trip. He said he thought they could've gone 4-1 instead of 0-5, which is why he spent the games screaming at the television.

Ellis said he didn't do too well at practice. He thought his movement was pretty good, but missed shots and errant passes troubled him. His teammates weren't as hard on his performance.

"He looked good," rookie guard Stephen Curry said. "Played a lot of 4-on-4 today. He got up and down with us. I don't think he'll miss a beat."

Ellis, despite his struggles, had the desire to give words of encouragement to center Chris Hunter toward the end of practice. Ellis was passionately vocal about Hunter's need to improve.


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Ellis' teammates liked the intensity though the Warriors are winding down a disappointing season.

"We're still on the job," Ellis said. "We're still clocking in. The season ain't over. We've got 19 more games. We're going to try to make the best of those 19, try to do something, give something for the fans to cheer about and look forward to next year."

  • The team announced center Andris Biedrins underwent successful surgery Wednesday in Philadelphia to repair a torn abdominal muscle.

    Biedrins is done for the season.

    That leaves the Warriors with Hunter as the team's only healthy center. Biedrins' backup, Ronny Turiaf, did not practice Wednesday and is questionable with a sore left knee.

  • Guard C.J. Watson missed practice to attend an out-of-town funeral. ... Fans at tonight's game who donate new or used wireless phones and accessories to Verizon's Hopeline Program, which supports anti-domestic violence organizations, will get a chance to meet guard Anthony Morrow after the game.