August 16, 2022

Anyone who watches Steph Curry during NBA games can see his greatness. It’s obvious, as he showed in his iconic 43-point performance in Game 4 of the NBA Finals on Friday.

But there’s a lot of work to be done for Curry to be able to do that against an elite Boston Celtics defense.

During his 13-year NBA career, Curry has accomplished just about everything a player can do. Despite what some in the national media think, his legacy is defined as the greatest player in Warriors franchise history and one of the greatest players in basketball history.

Curry could rest on his laurels and be satisfied with what he has already achieved. But that’s not what the big guys do.

Curry, 34, is in elite physical shape, quite possibly the most conditioned player in the NBA. He is constantly moving on the pitch. When he doesn’t have the ball in his hands, he’s always on the move, trying to move around in order to find the next open shot.

Steve Kerr, who has coached Curry since 2014, has rubbed shoulders with some of the game’s legends and is impressed with what Curry does.

“Just the consistency of his routine,” Kerr told reporters on Sunday. “It’s like a metronome. I mean, every day it’s the exact same thing. He’s in the training room, he’s in the weight room, he’s on the court. … It’s is a clock, but there’s also a sense of joy and energy inside of that work. He loves it so much. He loves the process. And I think that’s one of the things that unites all the great athletes, like, I’m talking about the superstar athletes.

“You know, the Roger Federers of the world or the Steph Currys of the world. There’s a routine that’s not just super disciplined, but really enjoyed every single day. There’s a passion that goes along with it. that’s what keeps it going over time. and when you like something like these guys, you work on it, you get better and you keep going.”

When Kerr’s comments were relayed to Curry minutes later, he initially joked about what his trainer had said.

“I need to get a list of all the people he compared [me to]. Tim Duncan, Roger Federer, add him to the list,” Curry said with a laugh.

Next, Curry reflected on where his work ethic came from and why it’s still going strong to this day.

“It goes back to how I started in the game when I was playing AAU back then,” Curry said. “I love working out. You kind of lose yourself in the sessions that you have on the court in training, in the weight room, wherever that is because you know it will lead you to be as prepared as possible. for these matches.

“Try to have as much fun as possible. Days when you want to get up and do work, days when you don’t, days when you’re tired, all that kind of stuff. But it’s all about my approach to when I started and I just try to do it every year for as long as I can.”

The best athletes in any sport must always find ways to improve year after year. The competition is getting better and wiser, so the big guys need to add new tricks to their arsenal.

Curry won back-to-back NBA MVP awards in 2014-15 and 2015-16, and yet here he is, in 2022, leading all Finals players in scoring (34.3), an astonishing 12 points per game more than the next closest (Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown, both at 22.3).

“Win, lose, whatever, talking about how you play, you have to keep coming back well to keep refining the toolkit and finding ways to evolve your game,” Curry said. “That’s the hardest part of what we do. Going on the pitch, everything is more reactive and you just live in the competition. But the hardest part of what we do is the year-long preparation .it takes to be good at this level.”

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It was Curry’s greatness that transformed the Warriors organization from a lottery-bound team for years into a dynasty playing in its sixth NBA Finals in eight seasons. Largely because of Curry, Golden State has a shot at winning a fourth NBA title since 2015.

To be great, you have to want it. You have to work behind the scenes that only a select few see. Curry gets to work. Kerr sees it and he still appreciates it.

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