ATLANTA– What a scene it was in Philips Arena on Friday night, as Andre Iguodala hit a game-winning three-pointer at the buzzer, and sent the Warriors home winners. They are now 4-0 on their current seven game road trip, and this win took everything they had.
Stephen Curry was coming off of a 36 point, 12 assist performance on Thursday night against the Heat, and he has played like an all-star all season long. In Friday night’s game against the Hawks, he came out sluggish, and it put the Warriors in a big hole. Entering the fourth quarter, he had just eight points, four assists, and three rebounds. When the game was over, Curry finished with 22 points, 9 assists, and 8 rebounds, and hit Iguodala with the pass that won the game.
“We drew up something to get to the basket,” Curry told Fansided after the game, “I was the second option at the top of the key to see if I could get a shot off.” Whatever they drew up, it worked. Iguodala has been the glue that makes this team a true contender, but make no mistake, Curry is the superstar. Curry is averaging 23.4 points, 9.6 assists, and 4.6 rebounds on the season–all of which are career highs.
Fatigue was clearly bothering Curry early, but he wanted to put the blame on himself, not fatigue. “In my mind it wasn’t,” Curry proclaimed when I asked him about fatigue,” Sometimes your body is on a different page, but I played a lot of minutes last night. [It was] a hard fought win, high intensity, and then come back here to do a back-to-back in the middle of a road trip. So, [there] was a lot of things he had to grind through tonight, and thankfully we were able must up enough energy in the fourth quarter to make that run.”
Curry has no doubt earned himself a spot in the All-Star Game (should be a starter, but we’ll see), and his coach even went as far as saying that he would retire if he didn’t make it this season. Curry was a snub last season, and it clearly means a lot for him to make it this season. “It’s important to every player. That’s a goal when you come into the league to work your way up to that point,” Curry told Fansided, “When you’re in the moment it’s not a priority as it is right now. I’m not playing to make the All-Star Team, [I'm] playing to impact the team, and to get wins.”
Mark Jackson is a player’s coach. When he talks, he captivates his audience, and his ability to get the most out of his players is impressive. “It’s special when your coach goes out on a limb and says that for you, “Curry told me, “it kind of acts on what he said last year. I appreciate every time he steps out like that, and pitches for his guys, and we do the same for him. He’s a great coach, and he’s put us in positions to be successful this year.”
As for wanting to be an All-Star? Curry was humble, but you can tell it’s something he desires. “It would be an honor, obviously, and I hope it happens,” Curry told Fansided. David Lee was elected to the All-Star Game last season, and Curry wasn’t. It was a snub last season, and frankly it would be a travesty if he didn’t make it this season. Curry seems to be on the right track, and he has led this Warriors team to a great place. Look for them to continue to grow as the season goes on, and for Curry to start getting the attention he deserves.