Stephen Curry has struggled in the past two games against the San Antonio Spurs. After a 44-point scoring outburst in Game 1, Curry has shot 32 percent and averaged 19 points over the past two games.
Is it time to sound the alarms?
In the three games against the Spurs, Curry has been on the court for 143 minutes. Though it takes into account the 58 minute anomaly from Game 1, Curry’s playing time averages to 48 minutes per game.
Curry is tired. He may not admit it, but it’s evident by his play on the court. His jump shots are not falling and he is not finishing around the rim. His 48 minutes per game are undervalued because Curry (and Thompson) is often running up and down the baseline on each possession, looking for opportunities to lose his man around a screen. A look at Curry’s shot chart from Game 3 shows a lot more red than we are used to seeing.
When David Lee went down with his “season-ending” injury, the Warriors needed each player to step up their game. The Warriors have lived up to the task of rebounding and defending, but each offensive possession has become a burden for this young team. Lee’s pick-and-pop and two dribble drop step are sorely missed, and Curry’s body is taking the toll for that lack of an iso dump play.
At the end of Game 4, Curry was floating in the corner more often than not for each Warriors possession. Admittedly, he was slowed by injuries obtained during the course of the game, but he looked gassed. Not only do the Spurs benefit from not having Steph light them up, but Parker conserves energy for the offensive end by pretending to defend a gimpy, tired Curry.
Although it’s sad to say, unless Curry gets massive help on the offensive end like he did in Game 2, don’t expect the Warriors to advance any further in the playoffs. Especially now, with the “good” ankle become a recurring problem, the Warriors need other players to step up and drive the offense.