Monday, April 29, 2013

If you haven't seen the highlight reel from Stephen Curry's video-game-like performance during the third quarter of the Golden State Warriors versus Denver Nuggets playoff game last night, stop what you're doing and watch it right now.

In a span of six minutes, Steph scored 22 points, including hitting off-balanced floaters and five three-pointers. Any basketball fan will tell you that the Charlotte native and former Davidson College star is one of the best shooters in the NBA. He set a record a week and a half ago when he concluded the regular season with the most three pointers in a single season in NBA history--his 272 three pointers surpassed Ray Allen's record of 269.

And speaking of Ray, he's the player Steph seems to be compared to the most these days. They're both among the greatest shooters of all-time and arguably the best shooters of their respective generations--Steph is in his fourth NBA season, while Ray is in his 17th (sort of like how Kobe Bryant was beginning to rise as a young star in the league when Michael Jordan was on the tail end of his career). I got to see Steph and Ray play early on in each of their careers. I grew up in the same area in South Carolina as Ray, so when I was in middle school I attended many of his basketball games during his senior year when he led our Hillcrest Wildcats to the state championship.

It's natural to compare Steph and Ray because fans today have gotten to see them play in the league at the same time for a few years. But I think Steph's game is more like retired Indiana Pacers legend Reggie Miller, in that he will take over a game and take shots that most players wouldn't have the nerve--or skill--to attempt. The main difference between Steph and Reggie, the latter whom played several seasons against the former's dad, Dell Curry, is that Steph will bury threes all over your head while wearing a smile on his face (he has that nice guy persona), and Reggie used to shoot up your arena and taunt you (he seemed to love for you to hate him on the court).

But whether you're comparing Steph to Ray or Reggie, that's great company for the 25 year-old to be in.

The fans who watched Steph warm up before last night's game got an indication of the type of night he was going to have, when he hit a H.O.R.S.E.-like shot from behind the players bench. So the deep three pointers he hit during the game were a cinch.

Credit: @CorkGaines


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