(Photo via cbssports.com)
Stephen Curry, the reigning MVP of the NBA, is playing at an unprecedented level. His consistency in making shots with such high level of difficulty has made him one of the stars of the league. With great teammates around him, such as Draymond Green having a breakout year of his own, Stephen Curry is following up his MVP season with quite possibly an even better one. Through 44 games, Curry has made over 200 3-pointers, while still being top 5 in 3-point percentage.
During Curry’s MVP season last year, former Golden State Warrior coach Mark Jackson brought up an interesting thought, suggesting that Curry may be “hurting” the game of basketball with his new play style. Jackson explained his thought, saying that younger generations of basketball players are running straight to the 3-point line and not appreciating everything that basketball has to offer. Jackson also said, “You are not Steph Curry. Work on the other aspects of your game. People think that he’s just a knockdown shooter. That’s not why he’s the MVP. He’s a complete basketball player.”
While I understand the point Jackson is making, I completely disagree. Basketball continues to change over time, and Stephen Curry is not the only player influencing the change in basketball that is going on today. Forty years ago, you wouldn’t even see a 3-point line on a basketball court. But nowadays, 3-pointers are one of the biggest aspects of the game. Being able to make 3-pointers consistently is important as a player, but even more important for a team as a whole.
Curry is playing better than any player in the league right now, and it isn’t a hard case to argue. His high paced, run-and-gun play style is fun for any fan to watch. Not only is Curry playing at a high level, but his team mates are also playing exceptionally well, as they see their team sitting at 40-4 just over halfway through the regular season. With a San Antonio Spurs team that has plenty of talent and years of playoff experience sitting just a few games behind the Warriors, Golden State needs to continue to play at this high level to get out of the stacked western conference, let alone win another championship.
While winning back-to-back championships is a very hard thing to do, I believe the Warriors are poised two win their second title in as many years. With the emergence of Draymond Green who has become one of the best all-around players in the league, I believe the Warriors are playing better than ever, and may not even be at their best yet. As Klay Thompson continues to have another strong scoring year, and key role players like Andre Iguodala and Harrison Barnes continue their strong play, the Warriors are the most complete team in the NBA, and the only one that nobody has found a way to stop.
– J. Horrigan