Williams ignited the back and forth after expressing an interesting point of view on the Celtics’ loss in the NBA Finals to the Warriors.
“When I’ve reflected and looked back to those games, I still would say confidently — confidently — to this day they weren’t the better team,” Williams said on “The Long Shot” podcast. “I would say they were the more disciplined team. I would say that without a doubt.”
It was a strong statement from a guy who averaged 4.2 points, 2.3 rebounds in the Finals and Curry — who has dubbed himself the “Petty King” — responded while he was hosting the ESPYS on July 20.
“It’s great to see you again, my man,” said Curry, who was sporting a green suit. “I know you like this color. I’ll let you borrow it after I’m done. I might even let you wear a ring.”
To no one’s surprise, Green won’t be taking Curry up on the offer, which he addressed with an Instagram post.
“I’d borrow the suit but I don’t wear a smedium,” Williams captioned a post with a series of photos from the event.
Grant Williams Has Been Called Out for Comment
While it’s just some playful banter between the two Finals participants, Williams’ statement is a bit ignorant considering the talent on the Warriors’ roster.
Curry is a slam dunk future Hall of Famer who established himself further as an all-time great with his performance against the Celtics, averaging 31.2 points, 6.0 rebounds and 5.0 assists on his way to Finals MVP honors. And his two long-time star running mates, Klay Thompson and Draymond Green, have helped the Warriors to four titles in eight years. That’s not to mention rising stars Jordan Poole and Andrew Wiggins, who also came up huge in the series.
Brian Windhorst of ESPN gave Williams a reality check after his comments on the Celtics being more talented but less discipined.
“As somebody who covered the Celtics for every game in rounds two, three, and four, as good as they were, and everything they had going for them,” Windhorst said on July 21. “It was maddening how they would lose their focus at times…You can’t throw off discipline as a throw-away line. Discipline is a big reason why teams win – it comes with experience. I think that Grant saying that might show a lack of discipline from him, and not understanding what it takes to win at the highest level.”
Curry Has Responded to Personal Criticism He’s Faced
Curry has widely been embraced during his rise to superstar status, but he has faced criticism at times for changing the game with his otherworldly sharpshooting skills.
“I’ll get tagged on something on social media, like, ‘You ruined the game,’” Curry told The Athletic in January. “Anybody who knows basketball knows where I stand on that. It’s an amazing way to play the game. It opens up the creative. Everybody loves to shoot the ball. But you can’t skip the work and years and years and years and years of reps that I put in and everybody on this level has. So, don’t skip that process. It is a fun way to play, and it’s dope to know that everybody feels an attachment to it.”
It’s not new for a superstar to face criticism — just ask LeBron James. But with four rings to his name and the Warriors set up for further success, Curry can easily brush off anything that comes his way at this point.