Draymond Green: Stephen Curry's 'Unselfishness Is Even Bigger Than His Shot'

Tim Daniels@TimDanielsBRFeatured ColumnistApril 9, 2019

Golden State Warriors' Draymond Green, right, greets Stephen Curry (30) prior to the first half of an NBA basketball game against the Minnesota Timberwolves Monday, Dec. 10, 2018, in Oakland, Calif. The first game both have retuned to play at home since recovering from injuries. (AP Photo/Ben Margot)
Ben Margot/Associated Press

Golden State Warriors forward Draymond Green said the value of superstar teammate Stephen Curry goes far beyond being one of the greatest shooters in NBA history. 

On Tuesday, Michael Lee of The Athletic provided comments from Green about Curry, a six-time All-Star selection, three-time NBA champion and two-time league MVP:

"So it says a lot about his confidence in himself. And not in a basketball game. Obviously, we know he is a confident basketball player. When Steph is on the floor, he's going to do what he do. But it says a lot about his confidence in himself as a man, his confidence in his stardom. His confidence in his brand.

"That's the thing that never gets any credit. But yet, if he does not do that, do we ever have three championships? No one will ever say, 'Steph Curry brought championships here with his unselfishness.' They'll only say, 'Steph Curry brought championships here because of his shot.' The unselfishness is even bigger than his shot."

Curry, 31, was named MVP following the 2014-15 and 2015-16 seasons. He was also the NBA's scoring champion in 2015-16.

The Davidson product was forced to give up some of his offensive touches after the Warriors signed Kevin Durant, another one of the league's best players and most versatile weapons, in 2016.

Curry, who averaged 30.1 points when he led the league in 2015-16, dropped to 25.3 points per game in the first season alongside Durant. He's slowly built his scoring average back up to 27.6 this year.

More importantly, the Warriors are the two-time defending champions and are a heavy favorite to win their third consecutive crown thanks to a roster with an insane amount of talent, which included the surprise signing of center DeMarcus Cousins in free agency last summer.

Curry told Lee gauging a player merely by their individual numbers is flawed because working within the team dynamic is more crucial to success:

"I think it's understanding that everybody wants to play good basketball and play with other talented people. Everybody would love to shoot 30 shots a game and have that experience, too, but in terms of when you know you're playing for something every year, the championship mentality reshapes your mentality on what success is.

"So, individual success in terms of stats and whatnot and that being the only barometer for how people judge your game doesn't mean as much because you know what type of player you are when you're on the floor, how dominant you can be and how you can work within the parameters of the team and other guys around you to get the best out of each other. It's one of those vibes where you feel like it's worth it."

In the end, Curry's outstanding shooting numbers and the team-first mentality that helped make the Warriors a superpower will both be part of his Hall of Fame legacy.