Steve Kerr has not coached the Golden State Warriors since Game 2 of their first-round playoff series against the Portland Trail Blazers as he seeks a remedy for the painful aftereffects of the back surgery he had two years ago. The Warriors haven’t missed a beat with assistant coach Mike Brown running the show, however, becoming the first team to ever start the playoffs with 12 straight victories. But now, with Game 1 of their NBA Finals rematch against the Cleveland Cavaliers looming Thursday night, Kerr seems ready to return, with ESPN’s Ramona Shelburne reporting that “there’s a chance he will coach at some point” during the series, possibly soon.

“He’s talked about possibly coaching Game 1 … and I even tried to tell him, ‘Steve, you should do it … and if you don’t feel like you’re okay, halfway through the game, just go back in the back,’ ” Brown told ESPN’s Michael Wilbon on Wednesday.

But with the Warriors on such a torrid streak, would that be for the best? Even Kerr seems a little wary.

“I think just, it’s the Finals, there’s going to be a spotlight, is it a distraction? Is it another story line? Do we need to deal with all that?” he told Tim Kawakami of the San Jose Mercury News earlier this week. “I don’t know. Ultimately I don’t think I can worry about that. I’ve got to play it by ear — if I’m feeling good I should coach and if I’m not feeling up to it, then I shouldn’t. And it’s that simple. …

“We’re doing fine without me,” he continued. “Honestly I don’t think it’ll matter too much to the team. I think the team will be fine no matter what we do.”

Brown, for one, doesn’t think Kerr’s possible return will affect the team negatively at all.

“We have a veteran team. I don’t think it will jolt our guys at all. I know it wouldn’t jolt me,” Brown said, per ESPN. “You know, I understand that that’s my job. But Steve is so conscientious about the players — and you know the story line and all these other things — that he wants to make sure that he feels good enough to come back and do it on a full-time basis and not rock the boat with anyone or not cause a distraction from our team. And I respect that. I’m okay with it however it happens.”

Kerr, who said Monday that his status is “up in the air,” led the Warriors in practice this week for the first time since he took a leave of absence to see a back specialist at Duke, where he underwent a procedure to repair a spinal fluid leak. He told Kawakami that it’s all a measure of how much pain he can tolerate while on the bench, and that things have “gotten a little better” in that department of late. We’ll find out shortly before Game 1 tips off if that’s good enough.