Steph's On A Historic Heater

He’s never played better than he’s playing at 33 years old.

Jim Rome
April 20, 2021 - 9:18 am
Steph Curry

USA Today

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I’ve been trying to tell you for a while now, but Steph Curry is on an all-time heater.  Even for him. There’s Steph doing Steph things, and then are things that Curry has never done. Things he’s never, things no one in the history of the league has ever done. Here we were. Here the bleep we aware. 

And, he did it again last night torching the 76ers for 49 points in a win. And there are hollow wasted points either; as he’s going historic, virtually every single night, the Warriors are making their run. 

As for Steph’s number: they’re just straight stupid. He now has 11 straight games of 30 or more. He’s averaging 40 per night on 54% shooting over this run. That’s just not supposed to happen. Even Curry, himself, isn’t supposed to be doing these things. But because no one ever has since James Naismith created the game

But now Steph is CHANGING the game. Again.

And right now, there’s not a damn any individual, any team or any scheme can do to stop him... Every team he’s facing each night knows what he’s going to try to do and not only can they not shut him down, they can’t even slow him down.  

When he’s on a run like the one he’s on, going for 49 isn’t that shocking. But the fact that it’s not shocking is shocking. This guy is making the freakish seem normal.

And last night, he started 0 for 6 from the field. When you start like that, it’s like, okay, this is regressing to the mean a little. This was bound to happen. Maybe the ankle still bothers him from the Boston game on Saturday. He’s only human after all.

Psych!

He’s not human. Because he came back from 0 for 6 to hit 14 of his last 22 shots. He hit 10 threes. Again, 10 threes would normally be a thing that would stop traffic, but he’s had at least 10 in four of his last five games. He has 46 threes in his last five games. That’s more than Larry Bird had in some seasons. And I know the game is different now than it was back then, but the game is different because of Curry.

He didn’t just change the league, he changed the sport. And he does it with moments like this three over his brother at the end of the first quarter.

There was this history-making shot with just over three minutes left.

And this one

And this one.

On that one, Curry slapped George Hill on skates and had him going backwards so hard, that Hill was practically at the free throw line and never bothered to recover. And I don’t blame him.

Why get closer to Curry when you know he’s just going to stick it in your eye?

I could keep going. And the crazy thing about Steph and his game, is that even if you can’t see the highlights right now, you can probably picture them in your head. Just hearing the audio of the play, you can probably picture that range, that release, and that follow-through.  

Because his game is so special and so unique, nobody else plays like him.

Nobody else warps the game like him. And nobody else warps everyone else’s brains like him. Just listen to Steve Kerr try to talk about him.

“I don’t know what else to say. It’s the same thing after every game. It’s just utter amazement at this guy’s skill level, heart, mind, focus. It’s just amazing to watch.”

He’s out of things to say. Again, as I’ve said in the past, that’s one of the best shooters in NBA history, so if anyone would understand what Curry is doing, it would be Steve Kerr. And he can’t wrap his head around it.

Check Doc Rivers: “I don’t know if I’ve ever seen anything like the run that he’s been on. There are guys I guess that have scored the points in the stretch that he has. But I guarantee you there is no one that has scored them the way he has. It’s been an art watching him play as of late. It’s just been a beautiful thing to watch.”

That’s the losing coach. That’s the guy who is battling his ass off every night to win the Eastern Conference and he’s coming off a loss to Curry and the Warriors and he is saying, it’s “art” and “It’s just been a beautiful thing to watch.”

And it is. It’s so beautiful, you’re practically okay losing to it. It’s such an art form, you’re like, damn, we lost, but at least I got a front row seat to that. He dominated us and destroyed our spirits, but it sure was fun. I know you hate my horse racing analogies, but this one fits; we had a horse in a partnership, nice filly, Hot N Dusty, I used to say she as personal ATM machine: every time she ran, she hit the board, and we always got paid: she was a gritty thing: then one time we stepped up in class and put her in against one of the best to ever do it., Zenyatta: and the big gal ran us right into the ground, and I didn’t even care; like I was in such awe of zenyatta and was actually honored to get our ass kicked by her.  Sort of the same thing with Steph: you’re competitive as hell, but you know you have no chance, and you’re actually sort of honored to be on the wrong end of an ass-kicking because you’re so awed by what he’s doing.

BECAUSE you know what you’re hearing there when you hear Doc talk? That’s awe. That’s appreciation. That’s a guy who loves the game and has spent his entire life around the game, just appreciating what another player is doing.

And Doc has seen plenty of Curry over the years. Way too much. But he still just appreciates it and respects it.  

Curry himself was a little bummed out afterwards, though.

Nobody is playing the game the way Steph Curry is playing the game right now. And yes, you can talk about another MVP for him. He’s has legitimately put himself in that conversation. It’s probably not going to happen, in part because of what Joker is doing, but if you’re an MVP voter and you see what Curry is doing right now, you sure as hell better be thinking about voting for him.

But this goes beyond that. This goes beyond the two MVP trophies he currently has and the rings that he has. This is something else. What he’s doing now is just flat out special.

When Steph Curry dominates a game, it’s just different. It feels different.

And don’t sleep on the fact that this is a guy who missed most of last year. And he’s back playing at this level? That doesn’t compute. How do you explain a guy who’s 33 years old doing what he’s doing right now?

He’s a two-time league MVP and he’s never played better than he’s playing at 33 years old.  After missing almost all of last season.  And just because he makes it look easy and effortless doesn’t mean it is. It’s the result of crazy talent sure, but even crazier work that he puts in during the offseason – constantly working on his game, finding new angles, new movement patterns, finding new ways to break the game that he’s already shattered a thousand times.

And we’re all witnesses to it. We’re all lucky to be around when he’s doing this.

The Warriors are playing the Wizard’s tomorrow night. I know what I’m going to be doing tomorrow and if I were you I would do the same.