How Golden State Warriors Stephen Curry became NBA's best point guard
Joyce Park stashed this in The Sporting Life
I was skeptical of this story -- the hype cycle is so pumped up we have to read about Steph's GRANDMA'S backyard basketball hoop?!?!? -- but it actually was a revealing look at exactly how much hard, grinding, repetitive work it took to make the most unstoppable shot in the NBA. 10000 hours of practice? Sounds like Dell and then Steph got that much every summer.
Practice explains why he's so much better now than even a year ago.
Yes he's talented but it's clear he works super hard too.
Look at all the dribbles he practices... Dayum!
The tenth drill -- 3 ball commando -- is insane.
Curry is standing at the forefront of a new era of playmaker.
For the first time since Magic Johnson took an evolutionary leap for the position, we're witnessing the ultimate embodiment of the point guard. Not a shooter like Steve Nash, a passer like John Stockton, a defender like Gary Payton or a floor general like Isiah Thomas. Someone with the ability to do it all, excelling in each category while elevating everyone around him and then topping it the very next night: basketball's new 6-foot-3, 190-pound unstoppable force. "He's lethal," says Curry's coach, Steve Kerr. "He's mesmerizing," says his teammate Klay Thompson. He's the "best shooter I've ever seen," says his president, Barack Obama.
Oftentimes he's all three at once. During a 106-98 win over the Clippers on March 8, Curry needed all of seven seconds to transform LA's defense from a group of elite athletes to a gaggle of bewildered senior citizens stammering around at the wrong connecting gate. Up by 10 with just under nine minutes left in the third, Curry dribbled past half court near the high left wing and used a pick to split defenders Matt Barnes and Chris Paul. When he re-emerged, 7-1 power forward Spencer Hawes and center DeAndre Jordan had walled off his escape to the basket. Curry had a split second left before the Clippers converged on him like a junkyard car crusher. He stopped on a dime, dribbled backward through his legs to his left hand, then returned the ball behind his back to his right. The move caused Paul and Jordan to lunge awkwardly into the vortex Curry no longer occupied. Curry then spun away from the basket (and what looked like an impending bear hug from an exasperated Hawes) before dribble-lunging, back, 3 feet behind the arc, as if leaping a mud puddle in Jack Curry's gravel driveway.
In the blink of an eye -- well, less, actually -- Curry planted, coiled, elevated and snapped his wrist. Splash. "That could be the greatest move I've ever seen live," blurted stunned ESPN analyst Jeff Van Gundy, who coached against Michael Jordan many times. When his colleagues giggled at the suggestion, though, Van Gundy growled back without hesitation, "No, I'm being serious."
The sequence had everything: court presence, ballhandling, flawless shooting fundamentals, creativity and, above all, major, major cojones. It left Kerr looking like a young Macaulay Culkin on the bench. And across the country, it had Grandma Duckie cheering from her favorite burgundy chair in front of the TV. "Each time Stephen does his thing, we all picture big Jack up in heaven, nudging all the angels, gathering 'em up," says Steph's aunt and Dell's sister, Jackie Curry. "And he's yelling and pointing, 'Look, look down there at what I did! Y'all know I started this, right? Started all this with just that one little hoop, right there.'"