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After breaking Ray Allen’s all-time record for three pointers made early December, Stephen Curry breached the 3,000 mark with days to spare before 2021 ends.
Currently, James Harden and Damian Lillard are the only ones who could prevent him from putting too much distance and render his eventual career total in this stat category unbreakable.
Earlier in the year, many forecasts such as those from Safe Betting Sites had labeled Curry as an overwhelming favorite to break Allen’s record in Golden State’s first few games. It truly didn’t take long for it to happen.
Curry hit the tying and go-ahead triples on December 14, 2021 at the Madison Square Garden against the New York Knicks.
After the night is done, Curry is four treys clear off Allen’s 2,973 for the NBA’s all-time lead in career 3-pointers and his five triples propelled the Warriors to a 105-96 victory over the Knicks.
Incidentally, Curry also torched the Knicks for 11 3-pointers at Madison Square Garden back in February 27, 2013. This is the most treys made in NBA history by an opposing player at the Knicks’ home floor.
Then on his last game for 2021, Curry hit five more against the Denver Nuggets to pad his lead. The first triple he knocked in is the 3,000th make of his career.
His amazing march towards becoming the best shooter in NBA history is a testament of how he initiated changes the game.
A lasting image during this impeccable run was his Golden State head coach’s reaction when made one of his long shots against the Los Angeles Clippers on August 2, 2015.
He used an Andrew Bogut screen to slide to the basket but was meet by three defenders. He dribbles behind his back to avoid the steal, stepped back in three point range and fired one over a stunned defense.
As the shot left Curry’s hand, Steve Kerr raises his hands in disbelief as there were about 9 seconds left in the shot clock, only to turn towards his seat smiling when the shot found the bottom of the net.
You see, Kerr knew the attempt was a lousy one and would immediately send any superstar to the bench during his playing days unless it was taken to beat the buzzer.
The only reason it was a good shot is it’s Curry taking it.
It was unimaginable that the shots Curry are attempting would be encouraged, even in practices and scrimmages, then. It was not even a first option as a buzzer-beater at that time.
Curry proved its the shotmaker, and not the attempt, that matters.
Breaking a record that took Allen 1,300 games to establish in just 789 should put to sleep any doubts to his being transcendent, to his lasting impact on the game.
Curry has been quoted to have said that once he breaks Allen’s record, the triples he sinks after are “just be about how far can you push it.”
Only 33 years old and converting about 236 triples in each of his past 12 seasons, his hitting 4,000 in the next four to five years is a realistic target.
Meanwhile, Harden is making a run at Allen’s record as well and Damian Lillard is slowly chipping the edge of the other leaders to climb the ladder.
As of December 30, Harden converted 2,516 treys during his playing career. He would surely pass Reggie Miller’s 2,560 total in 1,389 games this season.
Harden is averaging 2.5 makes a game this season. At this pace, he is expected to add some 125 more to his career totals that would slot him to third place overall.
Lillard is making about 3.3 a game this season. If he continues this pace, he will add 158 more, padding his total at the end of the season to about 2,300. This will be good enough for 6th place, overtaking Paul Pierce’s 2,143, Jamal Crawford’s 2,221, Jason Terry’s 2,282, and Vince Carter’s 2,290.
He should be able to overtake Kyle Korver’s 2,450 next season to barge into the top five.
Just about as old as Curry, Harden’s 32 and Lillard’s 31, they are the only reasons why many would still be hesitant to proclaim today Curry’s to the three point shot is as John Stockton to assists and Wilt Chamberlain to rebounds.
By Armando M. Bolislis