Warriors

Steph wowing Warriors with 'best basketball' of career

Warriors

Two NBA MVP awards, three championships, 17,160 points and 2,616 3-pointers have made up Steph Curry's legendary career so far.

But despite the accolades and countless jaw-dropping displays, the Warriors superstar might be playing the best basketball of his NBA life right now.

"I think that's part of Steph's brilliance is that he just constantly amazes you to the point where you almost take it for granted," coach Steve Kerr said after the Warriors' win over the San Antonio Spurs on Tuesday night. "I do think, and maybe it's circumstantial given the injuries and the fact that he's playing with a different group of guys -- this is the best I've ever seen him just from a confidence and a strength standpoint.

"And that's saying something, obviously, a two-time MVP, I don't think I've ever seen him look better."

Kerr isn't the only member of the Warriors who has been dazzled by the impressive display Curry has put on while trying to carry an undermanned Golden State team into playoff contention.

“Because A. He’s playing the best basketball of his career,” Draymond Green said of defenses focusing on Curry. “Then B. Because of the lack of respect of other guys on the floor that teams have. Everyone just sells out to try to take Steph out of the game.”

During the Warriors' four-game Texas road trip, Curry was unconscious. He totaled 149 points in four games and went 25-for-50 from 3-point range. His impact on the games went far beyond no-look layups and a dazzling display from distance.

 

“He had two assists (vs. the Spurs) and I’m guessing he accounted for 50, 60 points with all the slips and dunks we were getting on two guys jumping out on Steph,” Kerr said. “The way he impacts the game is so dramatic.”

Curry played in only five games last season while rehabbing his broken left hand. That break coupled with the long COVID hiatus allowed him to put in a lot of work on his conditioning and strength using all the talk around the Warriors' return as fuel.

"I'm blessed to be healthy after last year," Curry told reporters after Tuesday's win. "And obviously, the way the season started all the kind of commentary, chatter and all that, I worked my butt off over the offseason with the rehab, and I'm just happy to be playing night after night ... I feel strong, I feel in rhythm, I feel in ultimate control of my game. My shots are falling. And it all comes with, not only my own confidence, but the growing confidence of our team, in terms of how we're trying to play.

"Win or lose, that familiarity and that comfort is coming game after game, so that's important. I definitely feel the strongest I've ever been. I've got a lot of energy, feeding off my guys and just trying to make plays. It's a good vibe right now."

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The Warriors return home at 13-12 through 25 games, good for eighth place in the Western Conference, but just two games back of fourth.

Kerr has been adamant about keeping Curry's minutes to a 34-minute average for the season. That decision has drawn some criticism from the fan base, but Kerr said he won't sacrifice Curry's minutes to "chase wins."

A third of the way through the 72-game season, the Warriors are right in the thick of the Western Conference playoff picture and Curry is playing at an MVP level prepared to carry his team as far as his top-level strength and conditioning will allow.