Warriors' Steph Curry: 'It's Been Hard' Connecting with Teammates Amid Pandemic

Paul KasabianSenior ContributorMay 17, 2020

Golden State Warriors guard Stephen Curry (30) looks to pass over Toronto Raptors guard Norman Powell during the first half of an NBA basketball game in San Francisco, Thursday, March 5, 2020. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)
Jeff Chiu/Associated Press

Prior to the season being suspended March 11 because of COVID-19, the Golden State Warriors sat last in the standings with a 15-50 record. Injuries and departures played a part in that as a host of new, young players joined the ranks to form a team that looked little like the one that had made the NBA Finals the year before.

The Warriors were trying to develop chemistry and connect with each other in season, and Warriors point guard Stephen Curry told ESPN's Doris Burke during the Jr. NBA Leadership Conference on Friday that it's been hard to continue doing so amid the pandemic:

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Ali Thanawalla of NBC Sports Bay Area provided quotes:

"We're in a very unique situation, we're so new to each other. So many new faces that this year was always about trying to get to know each other, the 'bridge year,' trying to get back on top. Obviously, with injuries and all the rest, so that flowed right into this suspension where it's been hard, to be honest."

Curry also noted that natural conversations that would occur at the team facility during their everyday basketball lives help the players "get to know people," but that outlet has been taken away for now, with the two-time NBA MVP saying that it has "been difficult."

The Warriors have had 22 players take the court in 2019-20 alone. In addition, many of the players on their current roster are just starting out in the league, including six rookies and a pair each of second- and third-year players.

Curry also spoke about his role in trying to lead and connect with teammates during the pandemic.

"So honestly, I haven't been doing a great job of it and I hold myself to a high standard of leadership, so trying to find ways to have good balance, but checking in on the young guys who -- I can't imagine if I was a rookie coming in to this league and trying to figure everything out, and you get hit with the postponement of the season. So being trapped in your house and not having anywhere to go and being in a different city and all that. Long answer to say, I'm working on it."

The three-time NBA champion did note that the team is attempting to have Zoom calls where players talk about their lives rather than basketball. He also spoke of twice-weekly workout sessions with teammates.

Curry has played just five games this season because of a broken left hand suffered in October. The 32-year-old has averaged 20.8 points, 6.6 assists and 5.2 rebounds.