I always say the NFL is more fun with a healthy Aaron Rodgers. The same is true with the NBA and a healthy Steph Curry.
Stephen Curry finally returned to the court Thursday after missing the vast majority of the season with a broken hand. While he wasn’t able to carry the Warriors to a victory against the Raptors—the Dubs fell 121 to 113—he certainly tried his darndest. After missing four months of basketball, Curry dropped 23 points, 7 rebounds and 6 assists on 27 minutes in his first game back (though shooting a very un-Steph 25% from three) and had plenty of vintage Steph highlights to show for it.
Steph’s first basket instantly reminded us all what Steph was capable of: effortlessly bouncing off contact to draw the foul while still having the touch with his right hand to kiss the ball off the glass for the tough and-1.
The most vintage Steph showed up late in the second quarter when he gathered a bad pass from Eric Paschall and heaved an off-balanced three with only 0.8 seconds on the shot clock. Spoiler alert: it went in. There was celebrating.
You can’t tell me you haven’t missed watching this man somehow collect and shoot the ball in one effortless motion that is gone in the blink of an eye, and all you’re left with is the ball hitting net and Steph shimmying away.
It’s been no secret how bad the Warriors season has gone in 2020. With no Kevin Durant and Klay Thompson sidelined, the expectations fell for Golden State from a top team in the West to maybe sneaking in as an 8th seed. Then, four short games into the season, Steph broke his hand and the bleak got even bleaker. Like 14-49 bleaker.
Will Steph magically carry the Warriors to the playoffs? Sadly no. Natty and I wished it would happen on this past week’s The Long 2 podcast but that dream has died. However, that shouldn’t stop Warriors fans—and general NBA fans—from sitting back, cracking open anything other than a Corona, and enjoying Golden State games once again.
Steph Curry is back, and the NBA is a better place for of it.