It had been something of a down year for Steph Curry—at least a “down year” by the standards of a two-time reigning MVP. His shooting numbers weren’t quite there, and Kevin Durant had assumed the mantle as the Warriors’ biggest threat. Well, Curry hasn’t had to answer any questions about a slump since about a month ago, because he’s been looking like the Curry of old. And last night was vintage.
In Golden State’s 126-111 demolition of the Hornets, Curry had 39 points while going 11-of-15 from beyond the arc. Six of Curry’s threes came in the first quarter alone.
It surely would have been more—maybe Curry would have taken a run at his own single-game NBA record of 13 threes—if he hadn’t sat out the fourth quarter. In fact, this makes two straight games that Curry’s awesome starts have earned him early nights.
Klay Thompson had six threes and 29 points of his own, making it something of a throwback night for the Warriors’ snipers, and a perfect illustration of why the addition of Durant makes them that much deadlier this year—you simply can’t sell out to stop them on the perimeter. On the final possession of the first half, the Hornets double-teamed Curry at the midcourt logo. (He would eventually get the ball around to Andre Iguodala for a dunk just before the buzzer.) “He’s shooting threes like guys shoot twos,” Durant said of Curry.
Excellent timing for this. ESPN reported early this morning that Thompson will defend his title in the three-point competition at All-Star weekend, and that Curry is still deciding whether to participate.