Even describing Stephen Curry as enjoying another MVP-level season undersells how dominant he has been. It would be difficult to claim that the league has featured a greater player so far. That doesn’t necessarily mean Curry will win MVP; the Warriors would likely need to improve their position in the standings for that to happen, especially given how well Jayson Tatum and the Celtics are doing right now. However, take a quick look at the three statistics below to get an idea of the distance between Curry and everyone else.
scoring in the fourth quarter
With 179 total points in the fourth quarter, Curry tops the league. In fourth-quarter minutes, he is 93rd. I’ll say it again: Curry has scored more points in the fourth quarter than any other player, despite playing fewer minutes in the fourth quarter than 92 other players. Curry trails Giannis Antetokounmpo by 177 fourth-quarter points, but the latter has played 24 more minutes of the period. Curry has played over 50 more fourth-quarter minutes than Jayson Tatum, who is third with 171 fourth-quarter points.
In his 6.8 fourth-quarter minutes per game (almost two fewer than Giannis and Tatum, for comparison), Curry is active. He leads the league with 131 fourth-quarter attempts and leads Golden State to a plus-48 point differential while maintaining his season-high percentage of 43.6 percent from beyond the arc.
Nine players have ever attempted at least ten free throws a game while shooting 50% from the field, 40% from three, and 90% from the line. Curry is the only player to have such shooting splits and average at least 30 points per game, both of which he did during his undisputed MVP campaign in 2015–16. He’s doing it once more.
Curry is averaging exactly 30 points per game going into play on Monday, with shooting splits of 50.2/43.6/90.8 on 20.3 shots per game. Only four other players (Frank Kaminsky, A.J. Green, and Tony Bradley) are currently posting 50/40/90 splits, and three of them are playing fewer than two minutes each game. They are unimportant.
There are presently only two players in the 50-40-90 shooting club, regardless of qualifying. Curry leads the group with an average of 30 points per contest. Luke Kennard, the other, averages 7.9 points on 5.8 attempts.
3s each game.
Only Curry has ever averaged more than five made 3-pointers per game over the course of an entire season. With 5.1 a night entering play on Monday, he has already accomplished it three times this year and is on track to do so a fourth time.
If we reduce the bar to include some other individuals, James Harden maintains the second-highest mark for 3-pointers made per game with 4.8 in 2018–19, although his 3-point shooting percentage was under 37 percent that year. In 2019–20, Harden converted 4.4 3-pointers per game at a 35 percent rate.
Damian Lillard made 4.1 3-pointers a night at a success rate of 40.1 percent in 2019–20, making him the only player besides Curry to average even four 3-pointers per game with at least a 40 percent success rate.
Consider that. These players are the most prolific 3-point shooters in history; only Curry and one other player have ever made more than four 3-pointers a game at a 40 percent clip for a whole season. For the fourth time, Curry is on track to make at least five three-pointers per game at a clip of at least 42%.