Warriors

Wild stats from Steph Curry's first game vs. LeBron James' Heat Big Three

Wild stats from Steph Curry's first game vs. LeBron James' Heat Big Three

The Dorell Wright vs. LeBron James Show is a phrase I never expected to write, but here we are.

It now has been exactly 10 years since LeBron took his talents to South Beach on his infamous "The Decision" broadcast on ESPN. That brought a dominant four-year run for the Miami Heat, including four straight NBA Finals appearances and two championships. James personally won two of his four MVPs and became a champion for the first time. 

That was a much different time for the Warriors, though. Steph Curry was just in his second pro season during the King's first with the Heat, and Golden State didn't make the playoffs until LeBron's final two seasons in Miami. 

The Dubs' roster featured names like Rodney Carney, Lou Amundson and others who fans might not remember when the Heat's Big Three of James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh was formed. Which brings us to Jan. 1, 2011. That was the first time Curry squared off against James and the Heat, but it actually wasn't the first time the Warriors faced the star-studded team. 

Golden State played Miami at Oracle Arena on Dec. 10, 2010 and was pounded, 106-84. Monta Ellis led the Warriors with 20 points as Curry missed his first of six straight games with a right ankle injury. 

Let's now look back at New Year's Day 2011. With Curry finally facing LeBron and the Heat, this box score featured some wild stats.

Warriors' leading scorers

James and Wade did exactly what you would expect them to do -- dominate.

James was three rebounds short of a triple-double, scoring 25 points along with 10 assists and seven rebounds. Wade also added 25 of his own points, dished out eight assists and grabbed six board. Oh, and Bosh, the third member of the Big Three, dropped 20 points and had 11 rebounds.

But it was the Warriors who had the two leading scorers of the game. Ellis tied with James and Wade, scoring 25 points while going 7 for 16 from the field. The hot hand of the night, however, belonged to Wright.

The 6-foot-9 forward was in his first season with the Warriors. He averaged a career-high 16.4 points per game that year, but he was a star on this night. Wright scored a game-high 30 points and nailed six of his 13 3-pointers. 

In the end, it wasn't enough. James, Wade, Bosh and the rest of the Heat edged out the Warriors, 114-107.

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Big blown lead 

Remember when the Warriors used to come out of halftime and make NBA teams look like they belonged on a JV squad? Well, this game was the exact opposite. 

The Warriors came out firing on all cylinders. Wright scored 14 points alone in the first quarter, and 20 in the first half. He outscored LeBron 20-9 through two quarters. 

Golden State put up 36 points in both the first and second quarter, and led 72-58 at halftime. And then, their 14-point lead came crashing down. The Warriors scored just 12 (!) points in the third quarter, and were outscored 56-35 in the second half. 

[RELATED: How playing Vince 1-on-1 as kid helped Steph on NBA path]

Steph's lack of 3s

Curry scored only 15 points in defeat, and averaged 18.6 points per game in his second season with the Warriors. He also averaged a career-low 4.6 3-point attempts per game. On this night, the greatest shooter of all time was a ghost from beyond the arc. 

Over just under 36 minutes played, Curry only attempted two 3-pointers. He finally nailed one from deep with only 45 seconds remaining in the loss. 

This is how wild the 2010-11 season was, and shows just how much things have changed. Four Warriors -- Ellis, Wright, Acie Law and Vladimir Radmanovic -- shot as many or more 3s than Curry. On the other side, five Heat players -- James, Wade, Carlos Arroyo, Mario Chalmers and James Jones -- attempted as many or more than the man who has changed basketball with his touch from beyond the arc.

More than nine years have passed since that game. A lot, a whole lot, has changed since Steph and the Warriors took their talents, or lack thereof, to South Beach.

Damian Lillard matches Steph Curry in impressive 3-point shooting stat

Damian Lillard matches Steph Curry in impressive 3-point shooting stat

There has been an abundance of comparisons between Steph Curry and Portland Trail Blazers guard Damian Lillard as of late, most of which are prisoner-of-the-moment takes based in ignorance.

Yes, Lillard has been absolutely incredible during the NBA restart in leading the Trail Blazers to the No. 8 seed in the Western Conference.

No, he has not surpassed Curry as the best point guard in the game.

That said, Lillard arguably is closing the gap. And now, he has done something that no player other than Curry has accomplished in NBA history.

Lillard ended the regular season Thursday having shot 40.1 percent from 3-point range on 10.1 3-point attempts per game, becoming just the second player in league history to post that kind of efficiency on such high volume. Curry, of course, is the other, and he has done it twice.

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In his unanimous MVP season in 2015-16, Curry shot a ridiculous 45.4 percent from long distance on 11.2 3-point attempts per game. Then, in 2018-19, he made 43.7 percent of his 11.7 3-point attempts per contest.

And he just barely missed accomplishing the feat a third time.

In 2016-17, Curry shot 41.1 percent from 3-point land, but didn't attempt enough 3s to qualify.

He literally was one attempt short.

[RELATED: Steph, Dame deserve better than these ridiculous debates]

So, technically, Lillard will only have to do it once more to match Curry. 

That is, unless Curry reminds everyone next season why he's the greatest shooter in NBA history.

Damian Lillard, Oakland native, gets Twitter shoutout from Raiders

Damian Lillard, Oakland native, gets Twitter shoutout from Raiders

The Portland Trail Blazers outlasted the Brooklyn Nets on Thursday night to earn a spot in the Western Conference play-in tournament.

Shortly thereafter, the Las Vegas Raiders showed Oakland native Damian Lillard some love on Twitter.

The shoutout was much deserved, as Dame averaged 51.3 points and 9.0 assists over the Blazers' final three seeding games, while shooting better than 56 percent overall and nearly 49 percent from deep (on 14.3 attempts).

Those numbers never will seem real.

[RUNNIN' PLAYS PODCAST: Listen to the latest episode]

Although Lillard let it be known years back that he was not happy with the Raiders for leaving Oakland, he still roots for the Silver and Black.

[RELATED: Bill Simmons wonders if Dame is better than Steph right now]

Dame -- who went to Oakland High School his junior and senior years -- also made it clear last November he did not support the Warriors moving from Oakland to San Francisco.

The five-time NBA All-Star will be back in action Saturday at 11:30 a.m. PT, as the No. 8 seed Blazers face off against the No. 9 seed Memphis Grizzlies.

If the Blazers win, they advance to the first round of the playoffs to take on Los Angeles Lakers. If the Grizzlies win, then Memphis and Portland will do battle again on Sunday to determine who will play the Lakers.

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