ORACLE ARENA — Golden State has unleashed a multitude of beasts this season, but none are as terrifying as an angry Stephen Curry.
Curry’s emotions pushed him over the edge and into new territory Friday night, fueling a game-high 25 points as the Warriors took down the San Antonio Spurs 110-99.
Draymond Green talked about Curry after the game saying that ‘Angry Steph’ is a rare sight, but its always laying in wait:
“It’s that fire that the world don’t know he has, but I know he has it. It’s that dog that everyone tries to ignore, but I know he’s got it. To see that, I enjoy it.”
Pouring in 20-plus is nothing new for the Warriors sharpshooter, but the way Curry scored — and the ire behind it — brought Warriors fans to their feet.
With the score see-sawing through the first quarter, and emotions and frustration toward the officials mounting, Curry’s breaking point was midway through the second frame.
Called for a shooting foul against Tony Parker, Curry feverishly disagreed, exploding into a tirade of screams at the officials and was slapped with a technical foul for the outburst.
As Parker took the technical free throw, Warriors coach Steve Kerr continued to jaw at the officials in defense of his star point guard. Kerr too was given a technical foul before Curry unchained a monster.
Curry said he thought the officiating had flipped drastically, and that his reaction was like a reflex:
“Its a natural reaction to how I felt the play happened. It’s good at times to kind of show that, and hopefully get some fire going. … I don’t know how much of an impact it had but for me personally it go me going.”
Precision passes, including a alley-oop dime to Andrew Bogut, were a precursor to Curry putting the Warriors on top. Dribbling behind the back and crossing over, Curry found revenge, freezing Parker and hitting a trey over him.
With just over 40 seconds left in the first half, Curry drove into traffic, and, with fire in his eyes, picked up his dribble, spun the ball around his back and into an easy layup, giving the Warriors a 60-53 advantage.
As Curry continued to dazzle, his ferocity swelled his teammates with confidence. Iguodala hit two of his four three-pointers in the third quarter en route to a 14-point finish, and David Lee notched a dunk, block, dunk sequence to close the third quarter with a 21-point lead.
Kerr told SFBay the fire that Curry showed is what he wants to see from everyone on the team, every night:
“We need everybody to play with that kind of passion and emotion. I thought Steph was terrific tonight…we started getting the ball at David Lee and he started picking people apart and Andre started hitting threes. That’s when we are at our best when we are playing that way and it all starts with emotion and energy.”
Taking no chances against the Spurs, who handed Golden State its first home-loss of the season Nov. 11, Kerr kept his starters in through most of the final stanza.
The Warriors, now 43-9, finish out the month of February on a season-high six-game road trip before returning to Oracle to host the Milwaukee Bucks March 4.
The Warriors improved to 43-9 on the season, their best start in franchise history through 52 games. … Golden State is the 16th team in NBA history to win 43 of its first 52 games. … Golden State earned its league-leading 32nd double-digit victory of the season, which ties a franchise-record for a single season (1975-76), earning its largest win over the Spurs since a 12-point triumph in 2007. … Stephen Curry tallied his 12th 20/10 game of the season, finishing with 25 points and 11 assists and passed Latrell Sprewell for 12th place on the franchise’s all-time scoring list with 8,042 career points. Curry has hit a three-pointer in 45 consecutive games (longest active streak in the NBA). … Andre Iguodala hit a season-high four three-pointers, scoring in double figures for the 11th time this season (14 points). … David Lee scored in double figures for the 11th time this season, finishing with 11 points on 5-of-5 from the field.