Wardell Stephen Curry, also known as Steph Curry, put the league on notice when he dropped 54 points on the Knicks at Madison Square Garden, and I feel like that was the night the Chef began his reign.
Stephen Curry was drafted 7th overall in the 2009 draft by the Golden State Warriors. He did well, averaging 17.5 points per game in his first season with the Dubs while shooting 46% from the field and 44% from three. He was a solid player, nothing spectacular but he was definitely someone to recon with on the court. He continued averaging anywhere between 14-20 for the next four seasons, until he had his breakout year in the 2013-14 season, where he averaged 24 points per game, to go along with 42% from behind the arc.
That year was nothing compared to the years following, the 2014-15 season and the 2015-16 season. During the 2014-15 season, his numbers dipped a little, but that was due to the fact of the dynasty the Warriors created with Klay Thompson and Draymond Green. Curry was at the helm. He led the Warriors to the playoffs, dominating through the Western Conference until the Warriors would match up with the Cleveland Cavaliers and LeBron James. Curry was already playing well in the playoffs, averaging 28.3 points per game while shooting 42% from three. Curry and the star-studded Warriors were the favorites to win the Finals against LeBron James and the Cavaliers after the injury of Kevin Love in the previous series. Despite being down 2-1, the Warriors went on to win the championship, earning Steph Curry his first ring, with many more to come.
The following season was set on fire by the Warriors, going 24-0, an NBA record to start the season, as well as setting the NBA record with the best record of all time of 73-9. Due to his amazing accomplishments during the season, averaging 30 and setting the three-point record for most threes in an NBA season, Steph Curry won the NBA’s first unanimous MVP. Despite the successes in the regular season, the Warriors had a tough road to get through. First off, they were down 3-1 to the Oklahoma City Thunder led by Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook. However, they overcame that and were set for a rematch against the Cleveland Cavaliers and LeBron James, who has his supporting cast now with Kevin Love and Kyrie Irving fully healthy. The Warriors went up 3-1 on the Cavs and looked like they were having the perfect season. Then LeBron happened. The Warriors choked… in a surprising fashion.
This led to a ton of people questioning Steph Curry, wondering if he was actually a winner and if he really is as good as he showed during the regular season. Well, the disappointment didn’t last long for the Warriors and their fans, since they acquired Kevin Durant, and basically guaranteed them a championship the following season. Despite many people thinking Kevin Durant was the leader of that group, I personally believe it was Steph Curry who was the leader of that team. With Kevin Durant on the team, the Warriors went on to win the next two championships, with Durant winning both Finals MVPs.
After Durant left the Warriors, many questioned if Steph Curry was an actual winner, considering the past three finals were given to him. Well, Curry had the chance to prove the haters all wrong during the 2021-22 season, when the Warriors would face the Celtics in the Finals. To put things simply, Curry was spectacular, averaging 27.4 points during those playoffs. The Warriors won the championship, giving him his fourth ring, and the one thing he desperately needed to cement his legacy; a Finals MVP.
I believe Steph Curry deserves this spot. He showed all of us that he can win and carry a team to the championship. This Finals MVP put him in my top 10 and put him ahead of Hakeem. He is the second greatest point guard of all time and could end up overtaking Magic Johnson by the time his career is done. He is the greatest shooter of all time, along with the greatest scorer at the point guard position. He made the Warriors team who they are today, and winning 4 out of the 6 Finals is really astounding. He is number 9, and I can tell you he will continue to move up as time goes on. The Chef has finally arrived.