OAKLAND, Calif. — Golden State Warriors superstar Stephen Curry has been so good for so long that he and his teammates and coaches have gotten used to him scoring 40 points during a game — it’s a regular occurrence. The group doesn’t take it for granted. But after dropping 42 points in a 129-127 win over the LA Clippers on Sunday night, Curry and his teammates took it all in stride.
It’s already the third time that the former MVP has reached the 40-point mark this season, and the 33rd time he has done it during his career in the regular season, according to ESPN Stats & Information. The fact the All-Star guard also laid in the winning basket with 0.5 seconds left in regulation surprised nobody inside a raucous Oracle Arena.
“I knew we wanted to try and get a switch on the pick-and-roll and I had a lot of space,” Curry said. “We had shooters pretty much everywhere on the floor and I was able to get into the middle the paint — just a matter of being decisive, and just understanding I got an open lane, try to get to the basket and make a play. Draymond did a great job of sealing, I think it was Avery Bradley at the rim so that I could finish underneath Montrezl [Harrell‘s] contest. There wasn’t any hesitation on that play, just knowing what you want to do and trying to execute.”
Kevin Durant, who poured in 35 points of his own, acknowledged that while he isn’t keeping track of how many buckets the duo accounts for during a game, he knew early on how teammate Curry was.
“You could tell that Steph was locked in on just the moment,” Durant said. “Usually when you do that, you have a really good game, especially when you’re at the level he’s on.”
Steph Curry drives by Montrezl Harrell and banks a scoop shot off the glass and in to give the Warriors a 129-127 win over the Clippers.
The win marked the 14th straight victory Curry has had over the Clippers, five of which the Warriors had to overcome a double-digit deficit, including Sunday night. The Clippers led the Warriors 71-60 with 1:32 left in the first half. Curry did not play in a loss at Staples Center earlier this season while recovering from a groin injury.
Curry’s dominance over the Clippers includes five performances of 40 or more points, the most he has had against any team. Sunday’s winning shot was his eighth career go-ahead field goal in the final five seconds of the fourth quarter or overtime, according to ESPN Stats & Info.
Kevin Durant feeds a pass to Steph Curry, who knocks down a 3-ball through contact to put the Warriors up 122-117 late in the 4th quarter.
Curry’s night also included a technical foul in the first half after he and Clippers backup point guard Patrick Beverley exchanged a few words after Curry corralled an offensive rebound.
“They said I flexed at Patrick, which was a misinterpretation of what I was doing,” Curry said. “I flex as a joke all the time, obviously I have nothing really to work with. I was looking at the crowd and kinda celebrating an offensive rebound, which I rarely get and he just happened to be standing there, had a reaction to it. I told Pat, you got to do what you got to do if you felt that it was directed at you. But it wasn’t. It is what it is.”
Steph Curry comes down with a rebound and Patrick Beverley gives him a shove, causing them to exchange words and receive technical fouls.
Curry and the Warriors now have to prepare for a Christmas night showdown against the Los Angeles Lakers on Tuesday. It’s a contest that NBA fans have had circled on their calendars for months, and one the Warriors are ready for after watching Curry and Durant dominate against the Clippers.
“It’s incredible to play with those guys,” Warriors power forward Draymond Green said of Curry and Durant. “I try to be a leader out there and a coach on the floor. When I have to call a play it’s very easy, give the ball to one of them two, and let them do what they do. It’s great. Obviously it’s very fun to play with those guys and see what they do on a nightly basis. They are a big part of the reason we’ve had the success we’ve had.”