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Warrior Wonder: Curry’s offense, Green’s defense are both underrated

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Curry played entire fourth quarter, put the Sixers away with a personal 9-2 run to help end the game

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Golden State Warriors v Phoenix Suns

Last night, Stephen Curry didn’t lead the team in scoring - his 28 points were second to Kevin Durant’s efficient 34 - but he did put the game away in the last few minutes.

“Underrated dot com” Stephen Curry quipped to the assembled media after being asked about some comments his teammates made. He quickly corrected himself, “Underrated TOUR dot com.”

For those unaware, he was referencing his new UnderArmor endeavor. In partnership with Golden State Warriors sponsor Rakuten, Curry is running what they describe as a “showcase for high school players whose potential is far from being realized.” In other words, the overlooked, like Curry himself.

Not recruited much out of high school, Curry wasn’t featured on the All American team, he didn’t win a lot of awards and it’s carried over to his professional career. Even now, at the height of his basketball powers, his name is seldom mentioned by outsiders as being the best player in the game - even though numerous metrics point towards him being the most impactful.

“He could not score a bucket and still wreck an entire defense”

Curry, believe it or not, is actually not shooting the ball super well right now. While his 28 points last night on 23 shots is acceptable, he was just 5-14 from behind the arc. Looking back further, he’s been cold since coming back from the All Star break - a meager 13 makes on 45 shots.

For many outsiders, this is the knock on Curry. If his ridiculous shots aren’t falling, what is he, exactly? Here’s Draymond Green - who’s defense in the closing frame played a huge part in the win - explaining why Curry is underrated.

Green lists the ways in which he would specifically call Curry underrated:

1.) “He could not score a bucket and still wreck an entire defense.” and;

2.) “His impact to the organization... You know...” [here Green cut himself off, possibly to prevent disparaging a fallen King who’s new team is struggling. and;

3.) Referencing Mark Jackson’s comments about Curry “ruining the game” Green says he saw what Jackson was talking about. “He’s making a lot of people think they can do what he does [chuckles]... and they can’t.”

And here’s what kicked it all off, Andre Iguodala, unprompted, telling the media that he think Curry is still underrated.

But still. After fouling too much and sitting after playing just four minutes in the third quarter Curry played the entirety of the fourth. Here’s Anthony Slater, describing the closing few minutes of the game:

But the most important of those seconds came from the 3:41 mark to the 38-second mark. That’s when Curry went on a personal 9-2 run, hitting a 30-footer, a baseline pull-up, two free throws and a layup — bumping the Warriors from down one to up six in the deciding stretch.

That’s pretty damn wonderful.

Other candidates

As usual, Kevin Durant bears mention at this point. In pointing out the best performance on the night, it’s Durant’s 34 points on just 24 shots that stands out the most. Andre Iguodala was right to lump him along with Curry by saying ““Y’all two like Michael Jordan. No such thing as a bad shot.”

For the Golden Sidekick award, there’s really no debate here. Seldom-used bench reserve Damion Lee poured in 12 points off the bench by going 4-5 from deep. Given the dearth of scoring off the bench, I know I’m not alone in celebrating those 12 bench points last night, and hoping for more minutes for the shot-happy Lee.

Poll

Who was your Warrior Wonder against the Sixers?

This poll is closed

  • 59%
    Steph Curry
    (191 votes)
  • 21%
    Kevin Durant
    (70 votes)
  • 4%
    Demarcus Cousins
    (16 votes)
  • 7%
    Draymond Green
    (23 votes)
  • 6%
    Lol, I didn’t even watch the game
    (22 votes)
322 votes total Vote Now

Poll

Who was your Golden Sidekick in the Warriors win over the Sixers?

This poll is closed

  • 61%
    Damion Lee
    (158 votes)
  • 16%
    Andre Iguodala
    (42 votes)
  • 8%
    Steve Kerr’s clipboard
    (22 votes)
  • 13%
    Jordan Bell
    (36 votes)
258 votes total Vote Now