He didn’t quite set NBA free throw history, but he sure put a dent in it.
Steph Curry entered Sunday’s game with a streak of 76 straight free throws made, well on the way to the league record of 97 held by Michael Williams. However, after sinking his first four of the evening, he finally missed, ending the run at 80 in a row.
Although he fell short of the top spot this time, Curry’s string is still the fifth-longest in history.
- 97, Michael Williams, 1993
- 87, Jose Calderon, 2008-09
- 82, Dirk Nowitzki, 2011
- 81, Mahmoud Abdul Rauf, 1993
- 80, Steph Curry, 2019-21
The streak spanned three seasons, since he played only five games in the 2019-20 campaign. Along the way he smashed the Warriors franchise record of 60 held by Rick Barry, and the Hall of Famer was rooting for Steph to take it all the way past Williams.
Congrats @StephenCurry30 for setting a new @warriors consecutive free-throw record of 61. Proud of you Steph‼️ I will be pulling for you to set the all-time record and make it to 100 or more. @warriors @NBAonTNT @ESPNNBA @NBA @NBATV— Rick Barry (@Rick24Barry) December 29, 2020
Of course, snapping that run of perfection was only a minor blip in an otherwise legendary night, as Curry posted a career-high 62 points in the Dubs’ 137-122 shellacking of the Portland Trail Blazers. In this department, Barry narrowly held on to his all-time Golden State mark of 64 in a game (also against the Blazers, in 1974), with Wilt Chamberlain boasting the franchise record several times over (up to 100).
In terms of pure scoring, Steph had to settle for a personal best and a Chase Center high on Sunday. But in doing so he set another career-high, with 19 free throws attempted. After clanking the fifth one, he nailed his next 14 to start a new streak.
Considering his lifetime rate now sits at 90.68%, highest in NBA history by a full quarter of a percentage point over runner-up Steve Nash, perhaps it won’t be long until we’re right back here having this same conversation. Only 84 more to go on the current streak.