When someone hears the name Stephen Curry, they immediately think about three-pointers. And rightly so; Curry just submitted the greatest season of three-point shooting in the history of the NBA. He shot 45% from deep, while setting the single season record for threes made with 272.
His shooting is by far his greatest strength. His quick release and ridiculous range are what make him so fun to watch. He’s reached the point to where him knocking down 6 or 7 threes and scoring 30 points doesn’t surprise people.
But yet, despite the potential to be the greatest three-point shooter the league has ever seen, Curry is not just a shooter.
For one, Curry is a dynamic playmaker. He is an adept passer and can create shots both for himself and his teammates. In the regular season, he averaged nearly 7 assists per game. Through three games in this postseason, he is leading in assists, averaging 11 a night. His otherworldly shooting often overshadows his passing ability.
Let’s take a look at Curry’s skill set, featuring plays he has made this postseason.
These first clips show his ability to make smart decisions on the break. In both plays, Curry calmly pushes the ball up the court and makes the right decision. The first pass, especially, shows off Curry’s vision as he fits the bounce pass between two Nuggets.
The following clips demonstrate Curry driving the ball into the paint and kicking it out to open shooters. This is a vital skill set, and Curry is becoming very good at it. He is able to make the defenders respect his drive and commit to helping off their man to stop him. Then, before the defense can collapse on him and force him into a bad shot or turnover, Curry spots the open shooter and makes the right pass. He also delivers accurate passes, allowing the shooters to get the shots up quickly.
The final clip highlights Curry’s most impressive passing ability. It is another example of Curry driving and kicking, but instead of making a normal chest pass, Curry wraps the ball over his shoulder. It often catches the defense off guard, and is beautiful to watch.
This was a breakout regular season for Curry, but he has really made a name for himself so far in these playoffs, leading the Warriors to a 2-1 series lead while averaging 26 points and 11 assists a game. And while his three-point shooting will always be his most well known attribute, and deservedly so, his playmaking and passing ability should not be overlooked.