Stephen Curry has not played up to his normal standards in the Western Conference Finals so far, and it’s evoking fears that he’s still struggling with injuries.
The Golden State Warriors didn’t need Curry to excel in game 1 to secure the win, but they certainly could have used a more signature Curry performance to prevent a game 2 loss.
With the series headed back to Oakland tied 1-1, the status of Curry going forward could very well determine the ultimate outcome of the series.
Chris Haynes of ESPN has a great story about how Curry isn’t worried about his struggles thus far. Curry acknowledges that he has struggled in this postseason, but he never loses confidence in the next shot he attempts going in the hoop.
In the first two games against the Rockets in the Western Conference Finals, Curry has shot a combined 2-13 from 3-point range.
It’s alarming that a guy who has basically re-written the record books with his perimeter shooting in recent years has been so uncharacteristically lackluster in such important games.
The Rockets have also targeted Curry on the defensive end, but considering the personnel the Warriors deploy that was always to be expected.
Curry is by far the least talented perimeter defender of the stars he plays alongside with, and the Rockets are clearly looking to exploit that.
Curry also made sure to not attribute his struggles to any lingering injuries, saying that he’s fine now and that his previous injuries are not an issue.
Great players always seem to find a way to make the proper adjustments and snap out of any type of prolonged slump.
Curry has proven to be the best shooter in the world these last handful of years. It seems to be only a matter of time before the shots start falling again.
In terms of his defense, the Warriors have seen teams emphasize attacking him because he is obviously the weakest link on that end of the court. That challenge will have to be addressed by a coaching staff well aware of Curry’s limitations on the defensive end.
The Warriors stole a game on the road against the team with the best record in the NBA. They should feel confident with the next two games being in Oakland.