Steph Curry is enjoying a historic stretch for the Golden State Warriors.
The former league MVP has taken down a pair of franchise records in the past few weeks, nearly took down a league record, and now has gone on a torrid scoring stretch that has him joining a Warriors legend in the franchise history books.
Curry on Fire
The Warriors have won six out of their last 10 games, a critical stretch as the team looks to remain inside the playoff bracket and move up to the No. 6 spot that would allow them to avoid the play-in tournament. During that time, Curry has enjoyed one of the best scoring stretches of his career including a near-record performance.
Curry has reached 30 or more points in nine straight games, the first time anyone has done that for the Warriors since the great Rick Barry more than 50 years ago. Curry’s stretch included a 53-point performance in Monday’s 116-107 win over the Denver Nuggets, a contest in which he passed Wilt Chamberlain for the all-time franchise lead in points. Curry came into the game needing 19 points to pass Chamberlain and had that before the first quarter was over, scoring 21 points in the opening frame.
The scoring record came after Curry already set the all-time franchise mark in assists the previous month.
He nearly made history again on Wednesday. Through three quarters of the team’s blowout win over the Oklahoma City Thunder, Curry had hit 11 three-pointers and was just three shy of the all time record of 14, currently held by fellow Splash Brother Klay Thompson. But Curry never had the chance to make history, as Warriors coach Steve Kerr physically restrained him from going back into the game in a light-hearted moment.
As USA Today noted, the nine-game stretch has been filled with some of Curry’s best shooting performances of his career. He has averaged 55.4 percent shooting overall during the games, including 49.1 percent from behind the three-point arc.
“Arguably the best I’ve felt physically and in rhythm, shooting the ball, just seeing the game, so trying to make it last as long as I can,” Curry said, via USA Today.
Team Hits Key Stretch
The Warriors may need more strong performances from Curry down the stretch. A four-game winning streak has brought the team back to 28-28, good for ninth place in the Western Conference. The Warriors are still four games behind the Portland Trail Blazers for the No. 6 spot that would allow them to avoid the play-in.
Golden State will now be forced to face the stretch without a key player. Rookie center James Wiseman went down after missing a dunk in Saturday’s game against the Houston Rockets and was diagnosed with a torn meniscus in his right knee. He underwent surgery this week, and was ruled out for the remainder of the season.
In an interview on 95.7 The Game’s “Damon, Ratto & Kolsky” show, Kerr said it was a rough setback for a player who already missed much of training camp after testing positive for COVID-19.
“He is so promising and so gifted, and we’re devastated for him with this injury,” he said, via NBC Sports Bay Area. “It’s such a shame. He’s had such a rough go between missing training camp, and then the wrist injury and now this.
“But he’s a really promising talent and a great young guy.”