Has Another Scoring Title Elevated Steph Curry? | Sports Takes & News | TooAthletic.com
In a league that rewards stat padding like no other, the NBA’s Stephen Curry won this year’s scoring title, the second of his career with the Golden State Warriors. The feat moved Curry into a group of players who all have cemented their place in NBA history. Thus it begs the question: Does a second scoring title prove the greatness of Stephen Curry, or has his career has been manufactured by trick shots and flashy highlights? In other words, is Steph Curry really THAT good, or just a product of the no defense, jump shooting stat driven league the NBA has sadly become?
There are four NBA players who have won at least two regular season scoring titles, most valuable player awards, and NBA titles. The players are Wilt Chamberlin, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Michael Jordan … and Stephen Curry. Now, while this quartet of players would make for an amazing two-on-two game, I can’t help but remember the Sesame Street game “One Of The Things Is Not Like The Others” because I haven’t really thought of Curry, a brilliant three-point shooter and scorer as being anywhere near the same category as Wilt, MJ or Kareem.
Am I wrong?
Steve Kerr revamped how the Golden State Warriors played when he took over as head coach, focusing on ball movement and taking high percentage three-point shots. The results were the birth of a metrics revolution the NBA is now playing under, with teams passing up layouts for threes at a record pace season after the season. The spearhead of this revolution was Steph Curry, who made reaching the 50/40/90 Club cool and with his “Logo Jumpers” endeared himself to fans, and more importantly the media, who elected him league MVP twice.
This year Curry has the endorsement of LeBron James, who proclaimed him the most valuable player.
There’s zero doubt now that Stephen Curry is going to be a Hall of Fame player. That doesn’t mean, however, that just because he has done something that three of the all-time great NBA players have done that he is on their level. Curry, despite winning three NBA titles, has never won the Finals MVP award. Michael Jordan did that in each of his six years he won a ring, and in a league where stars are born in the playoffs, Curry hasn’t been the best player on his team, period.
Let’s face it too, the NBA was, for all intents and purposes, a contact sport for decades, which means the points the Abdul-Jabbar Chamberlin and Jordan put up were all much more harder to earn than most of the points Curry has. The league wants to be a scoring league now because its better for television, fantasy sports, and for the overall entertainment value of the sport. Thus, making the rise of a player like Stephen Curry and so many others like him easier and welcomed by most people.
For me, Curry is a product of his era, and his most impressive skill is hitting jump shots from places that in years past would get players benched if they attempted. That doesn’t make him a legendary player, just one that is playing within the rules of the game as they are today, and taking advantage of the system he plays in. That’s not to say his career has been anything short of impactful; but we do, however, need to keep things in perspective since without the rules being changed dramatically over the years, there would be no Stephen Curry.
Put Stephen Curry in the Hall of Fame today if it makes you feel better, because he will be a first-ballot selection when his career is over … and yes he is better than many of the recent inductees are. All I ask, however, is that you put his career into context and keep your perspective when doing so, because if anyone thinks he did as much or more on NBA courts as Wilt, Kareem or MJ, I would ask you to watch some old videos of the league since that is simply not true.
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Has Another Scoring Title Elevated Steph Curry? | TooAthletic.com
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