The growing power of the Curry-Wiggins shooting duo
Unanimous and Maple Jordan made it rain on Orlando last night.
I’m always intrigued by maxims like “there are no bad dogs, only bad owners” and “one rotten apple can spoil the whole bunch”. I’m eternally curious about the magical chemistry of relationships that can directly shape outcomes for better…or for worse.
The Golden State Warriors apparently have a pretty good handle on all that stuff. When Andrew Wiggins joined forces with Stephen Curry last night in San Francisco to commit basketball violence against the perpetually shipwrecked franchise that is the Orlando Magic, we witnessed more evidence that the Warriors provide an exceptionally encouraging environment that enhances their product in scary ways.
It was for sure scary with that 126-95 crushing in Chase Center.
A place for Wiggins to hoop
I don’t really have to go too deep here. You know how I felt about Wiggins back when critical observers were going over his flaws with a fine toothed comb…and in some cases a cheese grater.
What a difference a change of scenery can make. Here’s what folks are saying after Wiggins scored 28 last night on a career night from 3PT range (8-of-10):
(As an aside: Warriors GM Bob Myers was the guy who figured out how to turn the departing superweapon Kevin Durant into D’Angelo Russell, who he somehow flipped into Wiggins and the draft pick that became Jonathan Kuminga. Myers is a genius).
Wiggins’ hot night is just another piece of evidence that he’s a capable, efficient scorer who is only growing in the Warriors’ system. And if I say “the system”, you know I’m gonna talk about Steph Curry next, the guy helping Wiggins get the most floorspacing he’s seen in his life.
Curry shapes the environment
Earlier I referenced max contract high draft picks who aren’t able to lift their teams to championship levels, and here’s where we have to be grateful for Curry. He became a two-time MVP for the team that drafted him, despite the franchise being in shambles upon his arrival. The Warriors being terrible didn’t stop Curry from evolving into a star; he weathered the storm until he became a player who could lead them to better days.
Last night he poured in 31 points and 8 assists. There was one particular sequence that so typefied the player he is that I have to share it.
That is completely demoralizing. Look how Gary Harris just holds his hands on his hips after and stares at Curry like “you’re an alien”.
Just waiting for Klay…
One thing that cracked me up about the social media frenzy around Wiggins’ career shooting night and the hushed awe about his 41% shooting from deep, is how those were things we EXPECTED from Klay Thompson. Wiggins’ stat line last night would be pretty great but not mind blowing for the caliber of player Klay became.
If you checked a Warriors box score from three years ago and saw Klay had splashed 8 triples, you’d probably quietly nod and think “not bad”. We’ve seen him do that 13 times already:
The world has never seen a Curry-Wiggins-Thompson lineup; but they’d better put out their umbrellas and raincoats because the winter splash is coming.