The one item missing from Steph Curry’s Hall of Fame résumé is an NBA Finals MVP trophy.
That award, named after former Boston Celtics great Bill Russell, was instead handed to Andre Iguodala in 2015 and Kevin Durant twice (2017, ’18) during the Warriors’ three recent titles.
On Monday’s episode of his podcast, Golden State forward Draymond Green gave a reason for the empty spot in Curry’s trophy case.
“Kevin Durant was absolutely incredible in those Finals runs,” he said. “... Steph Curry got double-teamed probably seven times the amount that KD did in a given series. So when you watch those games and you say, ‘Ah, [Curry’s] numbers could be a little down,’ he’s facing a double team.”
Durant posted about his disagreement with Green’s take on Tuesday.
“From my view of it, this is 100 percent false,” he wrote.
From my view of it, this is 100% false… https://t.co/of6pFJUfvi— Kevin Durant (@KDTrey5) May 31, 2022
Green’s thoughts are supported by current Los Angeles Clippers coach Tyronn Lue, who was the head coach of the Cleveland Cavaliers for three of their four consecutive Finals matchups with Golden State from 2015-18.
“I remember in 2017 and 2018, we blitzed [Curry] still with Klay and Kevin Durant was on the floor,” Lue said following a game between Golden State and Los Angeles in February. “That’s how dangerous I think he is.”
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In 28 career Finals games, Curry is averaging 26.5 points, 6.2 assists and 5.7 rebounds while shooting 38.5 percent from 3-point range. Durant’s numbers are a bit better in the Finals -- 30.3 points, 7.7 rebounds and a 44.8 percent clip from downtown in 15 contests – but, as Green says, Curry was most often facing the brunt of the opposition’s defensive plan.
“If you’re capable of analyzing a game, then under no circumstances are you going to say Steph Curry needs a Finals MVP to validate who he is,” Green said.