Kids wanted to be like Mike, now kids want to shoot like Steph!
Stephen Curry, the most influential player since Michael Jordan? Let’s see why.
His influence on the kids is powered by the wizardry that he brings to the court every game. Also it’s easier to the kids to try to emulate Curry’s playing style than for example, LeBron’s playing style! James is 2,03 m tall while weighing 114 Kg and an unbelievable talent. He is a grown man and he plays like one, which is more difficult for the kids to copy. Stephen is 1,90 m tall and weighing only around 87 Kg, he is and looks more like the average man! This difference makes it easier for the kids to dream to be like “the baby-faced assassin”, Steph!
Exactly why are so many young players emulating Curry these days? Two words: passion and fun. Curry plays hard, and he enjoys himself. That goes a long way with both kids and fans.
There’s also the background story. From being overlooked for NBA draft as a college kid, to the league’s Most Valuable Player, Curry’s tale is that of the classic underdog.
To support this there’s the numbers of sold jerseys. More shirts are sold with his name on than any other athlete in more than 40 US states.
Curry’s playing style has also had a big impact on the league. If we were to fast forward 10 years into the future and look at the NBA we’ll probably see more players who play like Curry.
His impact on the other teams offensive plan has been also noticed. According to NBA.com, teams are shooting more three-pointers than ever, with the number of attempts taken in the NBA rising from about 44,000 in 2010 to over 52,000 in 2015, and Curry is leading the charge as the best shooter in the league. Like it or not Steph Curry is changing the NBA, and his impact will be seen for years to come.
A major product of Curry’s emergence, and the increasing dominance of the three-pointer, is that it’s moved the game out to the perimeter, and away from the paint. And that, in turn, has de-emphasized the role of big men in the sport. That, in turn, has led to teams experimenting with all-small lineups.
He is Marketable!
Jordan had Nike – Curry has Under Armour
As well as the skills on the court, it’s Curry’s marketability that is seeing him morph into a megastar.
One of the brands he supports, sportswear firm Under Armour, wants to build a $1bn empire around him.
Last but not least:
“Curry’s impact on defenses more dramatic than Michael Jordan’s” Says Steve Kerr, Steph’s Head Coach and Michael Jordan former teammate.
“Even Michael Jordan – people had the Jordan rules – but nothing has ever been as dramatic as what I’ve seen from opponents’ defensive schemes as how they have to deal with Steph.” Alleges Kerr
The three point shot is no longer a sideshow but an integral part of the game as when Curry shoots it has to be respected and valued. Curry has demonstrated for the 1st time in NBA history the actual realized full value of the three point shot.
A little math: Concentrating on the 3-point shot makes simple, mathematical sense, both for an individual player and for a team. If a 3-pointer is worth 1.5 times the value of a regular 2-point shot, then a player can be 30 percent less accurate from 3 than from 2, but still be a more efficient scorer.
The real effect in opposite defenses: The deadly accurate highly efficient Stephen Curry long range shot destroys defenses by forcing at least 1 and often 2 defenders to cover Stephen Curry many feet beyond the Three-point field goal line. This is required simply because any lightly contested long range shot is far too easy for Stephen Curry.
So the Stephen Curry long range shot on it’s own increases the offensive spacing for all players on his team by stretching the defense past its breaking point. Everyone on Stephen Curry’s team has a better offensive scoring opportunity simply because of the constant high probability threat of the Stephen Curry long range shot.
It’s the constant double team on Curry that creates the 4 on 3 scoring mismatch for the other 4 Warriors. Curry passes the ball to Green who then passes it often getting the recorded assist. The Warriors pass so often that assists are evenly spread despite the fact that Curry makes it all possible.
So it’s all very arguable for a lot of people that Stephen Curry is the most influential basketball player since Jordan, but it is undeniable that Steph’s way of playing basketball has made some serious impact in this game, not just in the NBA but worldwide.