Steph is Cooking
The Golden State Warriors have won ten straight postseason games and look almost unstoppable in their quest for a rematch with the Cleveland Cavaliers. After successfully sweeping the Portland Trail Blazers and the Utah Jazz, many experts assumed that the San Antonio Spurs would provide stiffer opposition. After losing Kawhi Leonard in a tough Game 1 loss, and getting blown out in Game 2, the Warriors seem well on their way to being crowned as the Western Conference champs again. The Warriors dominance in the Western Conference Finals has been led by the dominant play of Steph Curry, who is having his best postseason ever in what will be a Western Conference Finals performance to be remembered.
In the first two games of the 2017 Western Conference Finals, Curry has been putting on a show, averaging 34.5 per game as he led the Warriors to a 25-point comeback in Game 1 and a 36-point blowout in Game 2. Statistically, Curry is having his best postseason ever. He’s posting career highs in points per game, field goal percentage, and three-point percentage. When one of the best shooters of all-time is reaching new highs, the opposing team should worry. Many news sources are neglecting Curry’s outstanding level of play because it’s become expected. Steph reaches new highs in the playoffs, what else is new? When much of the media’s attention is focused on the possible dirty play of Zaza Pachulia, and the impact that injuries have had on the Spurs, it becomes easy for Curry to fly under the radar. Although Steph has been receiving less coverage because the performance of his teammates and opponents, but you shouldn’t underestimate the former MVP, he’s as dangerous as ever.
Curry has been an outstanding performer thus far in the Western Conference Finals, and while he has been shooting exquisitely, he can’t claim all the credit. The Warriors best play in the series has come when Kawhi Leonard has been off the court. After Leonard was knocked out of the game by a questionable play by Zaza Pachulia in Game 1, the Warriors mounted a 20-point comeback. In Game 2, with Leonard still recovering from injury, the Warriors manhandled the Spurs. The Warriors best play has come when the Spurs’ best player, and one of the league’s best defenders, has been off the court. In additions to Leonard’s absence, the Spurs’ veteran point guard, the player who would’ve been defending Curry, was injured in the previous series and will be sidelined for the remainder of the postseason. Curry’s performance is definitely notable, but the Spurs’ injuries have definitely been a factor.
This Warriors team is not the same team that made the Finals in consecutive seasons. They’re better. The Warriors took one of the best teams of all-time, and added a former MVP to the mix. With the addition of Kevin Durant, the Warriors became a scary concept. If Kawhi Leonard could shut down Kevin Durant, then Steph Curry could carry the scoring load. If Tony Parker could’ve shut down Steph Curry, then Klay Thompson would’ve stepped up. The Warriors have three different lethal scorers, and stopping all of them is a daunting task. This series, Steph has carried the load. Klay Thompson has averaged 8.5 points per game this series, and his lack of scoring hasn’t been noticed since Curry and Durant can carry the scoring load on their own.
This series is the perfect storm for Steph Curry and the Golden State Warriors, which is bad news for the San Antonio Spurs.