Steph Curry's mojo against the Cavs is now gone

Steph Curry's mojo against the Cavs is now gone

It was less than a year ago that the Warriors and Stephen Curry went into Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland and put on the kind of show that polished his resume for his second consecutive MVP award.

After saying that he hoped the visitors’ locker room “still smells a little bit like champagne,” Curry needed only 28 minutes to score 35 points, on 12-of-18 shooting, including 7-of-12 from deep, in a 132-98 laugher over the Cavaliers.

He burned them a couple times in the NBA Finals, too, but midway through that series his mojo began to fade. It’s now gone, the latest compelling evidence coming Sunday, when Curry was outplayed once again by Cavs point guard Kyrie Irving in a 109-108 loss in Cleveland.

Curry’s line: 15 points (4-of-11 shooting, 2-of-7 from deep, 5-of-6 from the line), three assists, three rebounds, three steals and three turnovers. He played 37 minutes and was minus-1 for the game.

Curry was displeased with his showing, saying he felt he was aggressive enough but not always properly channeled.

“But I’ve got to do it a different way,” he said. "I mean, honestly, you can’t have 11 shots.

“I’ve got to get more looks at the rim, and that’s nobody’s fault. I’ve got to figure out a way to be more aggressive in that respect, and keep the defense honest and use all the talents that we have on this team, including my scoring ability.”

This was Curry being contained, mostly by DeAndre Liggins and Iman Shumpert, rangy guards known for playing solid defense.

Meanwhile, Irving was having quite the day: 25 points (11-of-27 shooting, 2-of-5 from deep, 1-of-1 from the line), 10 assists, six rebounds, seven steals and two turnovers. He played 44 minutes and was plus-5.

Irving also drained, with 3.4 seconds remaining, the game-winning shot – as he did in Game 7 of the NBA Finals last June.

Replaced by Shaun Livingston on the defensive possession, Curry could only watch from the bench as Irving dropped in a fadeaway over competent defense by Klay Thompson.

Curry wasn’t happy about that, either, but has no plan to confront coach Steve Kerr about the late-game substitution.

“It’s his call, obviously,” Curry said of Kerr. “But we’ll . . . you love the competitive nature, and you want to be out there trying to make a play. That will never die in me.”

Curry over his last four games against the Cavs (including Games 5, 6 and 7 of The Finals) is shooting 36.6 percent (26 of 71) from the field, including 34.6 percent (17-of-49) from beyond the arc.

That the Warriors lost all four games may not be a coincidence.

Curry limps to locker room with left knee strain, does not return vs Hawks


Curry limps to locker room with left knee strain, does not return vs Hawks

OAKLAND -- Stephen Curry lasted 25 minutes Friday night before limping out of another game.

He was diagnosed with a left knee strain and did not return after sustaining the injury.

Curry came up limping after center JaVale McGee, leaping for a rebound, tumbled backward into his lower legs with 3:09 remaining in the third quarter of the Warriors-Hawks game at Oracle Arena.

Immediately, the sellout crowd let out a collective groan.

Curry, his face a mask of dejection, headed for the bench, where he was examined by Warriors physical performance specialist Chelsea Lane. The two then headed into the locker room.

Curry scored a team-high 29 points and grabbed seven rebounds before leaving the game. This was his first appearance since March 8, when he tweaked his surgically repaired right ankle, causing him to miss six games.

Curry has missed 21 of the team’s 71 games. His status for the game Sunday against Utah has not yet been determined.

This story is being updated. 

It's official -- Steph Curry will return vs Hawks, Dennis Schroder awaits him


It's official -- Steph Curry will return vs Hawks, Dennis Schroder awaits him

OAKLAND -- At a time when the Warriors could use a boost, they’ll get Friday night when Stephen Curry rejoins the lineup as they face the Atlanta Hawks.

The Warriors (53-18) have been shorthanded for two weeks, and still they’ll be without three of their four All-Stars. Curry’s return after a six-game absence, however, will send a jolt of energy through the team and the crowd at Oracle Arena.

The Hawks (21-51), in full rebuild mode, have lost 10 of 13 since the All-Star break, including a 105-90 loss to the Kings on Thursday night in Sacramento before the lightest NBA crowd of the season due to protests in the wake of a police shooting.


Warriors by 9


Stephen Curry vs. Dennis Schroder: Under normal circumstances, this is worthy of attention, but it’s particularly intriguing with Curry making his return. Schroder, who rested Thursday night, is a defensive pest, the type of player whose presence lights a fire under opponents. Not that Curry needs it. He’s downright anxious to get back on the court.


Warriors: F Omri Casspi (R ankle sprain) is listed as questionable. F Kevin Durant (R rib cartilage injury), F Draymond Green (pelvic contusion) and G Klay Thompson (R thumb fracture) are listed as out.

Hawks: G Kent Bazemore (R knee bone bruise), F De’Andre Bembry (abdominal strain), G Antonious Cleveland (L ankle surgery rehab), F/C John Collins (L ankle sprain), G Malcolm Delaney (L ankle sprain) and G Jaylen Morris (L ankle sprain) are listed as out.


Warriors: 6-4. Hawks: 2-8.


Sean Wright (crew chief), Kevin Cutler, Rodney Mott


The Warriors prevailed in the first of two meetings this season, 114-109 on March 2 in Atlanta. They swept the two-game series last season and are 6-1 against the Hawks in the Steve Kerr era.


DEFENSIVE INTENSITY: Green’s absence robs the Warriors of their best defender and emotional leader. How do they compensate? That’s going to be tough. Expect Jordan Bell (who will start) and Kevon Looney to handle most of the minutes at PF. They’re capable and willing defenders, but neither has Green’s savvy.

THE GIFTS: Though the Warriors, even without a full roster, are much the better team, those circumstances have guaranteed nothing this season. They have a tendency to keep games close by committing costly turnovers. The Hawks are second in forcing turnovers (15.5 per game) and third in points off turnovers (18.2).

THE GUARDS: Curry’s return gives the Warriors a fourth guard, with three PGs (Quinn Cook, Shaun Livingston, Curry) and SG Nick Young. Because Curry and Quinn Cook are capable of playing off the ball, there will be several variations. Any two can be paired as a duo. The coaching staff gets to satisfy its desire to experiment.