Steph Curry With the Shot

Steph+Curry+in+his+college+days+with+JoJo+Hurt+%28AMHS+2003+alum+and+Ms.+Hurt%27s+daughter%29%2C+and+Jason+Richards
Back to Article
Back to Article

Steph Curry With the Shot

Steph Curry in his college days with JoJo Hurt (AMHS 2003 alum and Ms. Hurt's daughter), and Jason Richards

Steph Curry in his college days with JoJo Hurt (AMHS 2003 alum and Ms. Hurt's daughter), and Jason Richards

Steph Curry in his college days with JoJo Hurt (AMHS 2003 alum and Ms. Hurt's daughter), and Jason Richards

Steph Curry in his college days with JoJo Hurt (AMHS 2003 alum and Ms. Hurt's daughter), and Jason Richards

Last season, Wardell Stephen Curry II burst onto the NBA scene, leading his Golden State Warriors to a NBA title and earning himself an MVP honor as well.

It hasn’t always been easy for Steph, unlike other NBA superstars LeBron James, Kevin Durant, and Carmelo Anthony. The Akron-born Curry, moved to Charlotte, NC in his early childhood, and attended little known Charlotte Christian High School, as an undersized point guard with a decent jump shot. He dominated the high school game with relative ease, but struggled to earn the respect of major college programs primarily due to his stature and that his style of play fit that of a “tweener” between a point guard and a shooting guard. He had the size and build of a slim college point guard but lacked the handles, passing ability, and defensive prowess to be successful in that position. On the other hand, he was known for his outstanding shooting ability, but lacked the size and strength of a D1 shooting guard. Even the one thing he was known for, perimeter shooting, was questioned by the critics, who said that his release was too low, and that he would struggle to get up shots at the next level.

With all of the questions about Curry’s game, he chose to attend little, in-state, Davidson College. And once again, he did more than hold his own as a Wildcat, averaging over 20 ppg each of his three years at Davidson. However, he still had not garnered the national attention he deserved until he got a chance on the biggest stage in college basketball: March Madness. The Curry-led Davidson Wildcats earned an automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament by winning the SOCON conference championship, but were given a 10 seed, despite a 29-7 record, and a perfect run through the Southern Conference.

It was here Stephen Curry had and took the chance to prove himself to all the colleges that passed on him as an incoming freshmen. After upset victories over 7 seed Gonzaga and 2 seed Georgetown, the Davidson Wildcats were into the second weekend of the tournament, and it seemed the glass slipper fit for the Cinderella story Wildcats in this March Madness. Then, Davidson took on 3 seed Wisconsin, and shocked the world once again with a resounding 73-56 victory, sending Curry and the Wildcats to the Elite Eight, where they came up against top seeded Kansas. The upset-minded Wildcats hung around with the Jayhawks for 40 minutes, but Curry’s game winner, and the Wildcats as a team came up just short, and Davidson’s historic run came to an end.

However, Stephen Curry’s basketball career was just beginning. The following year, he was selected 7th overall by the Golden State Warriors in the 2009 NBA Draft. He finished second in NBA Rookie of the Year voting, and he looked to be the next bright point guard in the league. Then, the 2011-2012 season delayed Curry’s rise to stardom, primarily due to injuries. He had 2 surgeries on his right ankle that year, and also strained a tendon in his right foot, which kept him out of 56 of the 82 regular season games.

But he came back stronger than ever, and with fellow “Splash Brother”, Klay Thomspon, the Golden State franchise had become a force in the NBA. On February, 27, 2013, Curry had his coming-out, or comeback, party, depending on how you look at it, in none other than the Madison Square Garden. Curry rattled off 11 of 13 threes on that historic night, en route to a career-high 54 point performance. The Warriors still struggled for the majority of the season despite Curry’s dominance.

Then, the following season belonged to the team from the Bay, and Curry became a household name. He averaged 23.8 points and 7.7 assists per game, and those numbers earned him an MVP award and helped bring Golden State their first title in 40 years. Steph and Co. capped off the 2014-2015 year defeating the loaded Cleveland Cavaliers team with LeBron James, Kyrie Irving, and Kevin Love in the NBA Finals.

Still, Steph Curry’s best was yet to come. This season he is averaging 30.7 points, 6.6 assists, and 5.3 rebounds a game. The Warriors have an NBA-best 54-5 record, and are closing in on the 73 win mark, a NBA record. Curry looks to be the favorite to repeat as the NBA MVP, and the Warriors will surely be heavy favorites to repeat as champs. Also, and hear me out here, Curry might win the Most Improved Award this year as well. His scoring, assisting, and rebounding numbers are up from a year ago, he is shooting a higher percentage from three and has made more threes than he did last year, and his defense is much improved from the previous season. Across the board, Curry has taken another step towards becoming one of the NBA’s greatest point guards.

Last Saturday night, Curry and the Warriors took on the Oklahoma City Thunder in what will probably be the game of the year. Curry carried the Golden State offense all night, and a late burst from fellow guard Klay Thompson sent the game to overtime. The opening two or three minutes of OT belonged to the Thunder, whom took a comfortable lead. Then, Curry got hot once again, and the Warriors tied the game with about 15 seconds left, and OKC had the ball. Thunder point guard Russell Westbrook missed a jumper with 5 seconds left, Warriors forward Andre Iguodala rebounded the miss and immediately found Curry, who looked very relaxed for someone who had the ball in their hands 70 feet from the hoop with just 3 or 4 seconds left. He took a quick a peak at the clock, walked up the left side of the floor, and casually pulled up for a 32-footer with a hand right in his face, silencing the Chesapeake Energy Arena and the Thunder faithful.

Curry certainly earned a few more bandwagon fans on that night, and I, for a moment, considered it. Watching him play is just so enjoyable and captivating; he plays the game with such ease. Plus, he’s relatable. Stephen Curry didn’t get a college scholarship to an elite D-1 school, and he isn’t the most athletically gifted player on the court. Instead, Curry has mastered his craft, and each year adds something to his game. He has still room for improvement, and I can’t wait to see what Curry becomes in the following years.

 

Print Friendly, PDF & Email