Last night, February 27, Steph Curry dazzled more than just Spike Lee when he exploded and torched the New York Knicks for 54 points.
It’s unclear which part of his stellar play was most impressive. In addition to shooting 11-13 from three point range, Curry added six rebounds, and seven assists. The stat line doesn’t show how hard he had to work to score. Regardless of some open looks in the second quarter, as the game wore on, the Knicks made adjustments to double-team and trap Curry. Crafty ball handling helped Curry navigate to open space, and timely passes found teammates in scoring position. After such a complete game, fans can’t help but wonder is Curry ready to burden the weight of superstardom?
Many of the league’s best players have erupted for high scoring games in Madison Square Garden: Kobe Bryant tallied 61 points in 2009, and LeBron shadowed those efforts scoring 52 points just two days later.
“It is the best place on Earth to play an NBA basketball game. I’m mean it’s the Mecca. Everyone that plays loves playing in the Garden,” said former San Antonio Spur, Bruce Bowen, in a post-game analysis.
Both Kobe and LeBron led their teams to victory on their respective nights, but Curry’s efforts resulted in a loss.Yet, losing only diminished Curry’s efforts in the team’s win-loss column.
Curry’s unconscious shooting captured the attention of many NBA aficionados, while garnering newfound respect from opposing players and even coaches that may have slighted him of his first all-star appearance. After all, how often does a crowd cheer somebody on when they’re dropping buckets on their beloved home team?
Curry is no stranger to carrying a team. He catapulted the Davidson Wildcat’s Cinderella title run leading his team in scoring to the tune of 28.6 points per game. Keep in mind that a college game lasts 40 minutes, which is eight minutes less than an NBA game.
Nobody know’s what had Curry so fired up. Maybe he knew his team needed his aggressive scoring mentality and leadership in the midst of David Lee’s suspension, or maybe because his pockets were $35,000 lighter from a fine passed down by the league office for his minor role in a skirmish with the Pacers. Nevertheless, Curry was on fire.
Granted Curry’s ankles might not support the weight of superstardom, his shoulders demonstrate a pure shooting stroke, leadership, and fearless play that foreshadows a boundless future.
Ironically, Curry penned “I can do all things” on the toe of his flamboyant, electric blue and gold shoes. He scored 54 points, kept his teammates involved and entertained the audience by showing a portion of his personality as he shimmied down the court in celebratory ode to coach Mark Jackson. Last night Curry may have become an NBA superstar, and he did do “all things” – except win.