Steph Curry is in the midst of one of the deepest shooting slumps of his career, one that could be dropping him out of MVP contention for the season.
The Golden State Warriors guard has been ice cold from the field over the course of the last few weeks, making just 37.1 percent of his shots in the month of January while averaging 20.6 points. As Bleacher Report’s Doric Sam noted, Curry was the league’s leading scorer through the first several weeks of the season, reaching 27.4 points per game in November while hitting 42.3 percent of his three-pointers.
Curry’s shooting percentage started its downward trend around the time he reached the all-time three-point record, and fell more with the return of fellow Splash Brother Klay Thompson in early January, Sam noted. While the Warriors remain one of the top teams in the Western Conference, Curry’s aspirations for a third league MVP title may be fading away.
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Curry Drops Down MVP Ladder
After the Warriors eked out a 94-92 win over the Utah Jazz on Sunday — despite a 5-for-20 shooting night from Curry, including just 1-for-13 from three-point range — Curry was in no mood to make excuses.
“Who gives a d*** about excuses, or anything anybody wants to hear about why? You either make shots, or you miss shots, so I gotta start making some shots,” Curry said, via Bleacher Report’s Sam.
Due in large part to the recent dip, along with some strong play from other top players around the league, Curry has fallen out of the top spot he once held in NBA.com’s Kia MVP Ladder. The site’s January 21 write-up noted that Curry is working his way back since falling down to No. 6 in the previous week’s rankings, but others like Chris Paul have passed him up.
“Stephen Curry nearly returned to the top five after putting together his first 30-plus point night since Christmas on Thursday, but the Warriors suffered their second loss (on the front end of a back-to-back) in three games at home against a depleted Pacers team,” the report noted. Besides, we can’t ignore Paul’s role in snapping Dallas’ four-game win streak with a double-double, as Phoenix extended its own hot streak to five games with the point guard racking up 10 points in the final frame.”
Warriors Respond to Curry’s Slump
Unlike last season, when Curry was surrounded by an inferior supporting cast and the team often relied on his heroics, the Warriors have been able to overcome many of his poor performances this season. The return of Thompson after more than two years of rehabbing back-to-back major injuries has given a boost to the rotation as well.
Curry has also adjusted his game to the poor three-point shooting stretch, still averaging 20.6 points per game in January. After the team’s 130-92 win over the Dallas Mavericks on January 25, Warriors head coach Steve Kerr joked that Curry’s deep shooting days may not be behind him.
“Steph is no longer a three-point shooter,” Kerr told reporters. “We’re going to really get the ball to him in the paint and turn him into a back-to-the-basket [player].”