Golden State Warriors head coach Steve Kerr was not at all surprised by his star point guard Stephen Curry eventually heating up against a dangerous Houston Rockets team, as the sharpshooter eventually found his stroke in the third quarter, where he tallied 14 of his 27 points.
Curry’s flurry was an 11-point personal run — three 3-pointers and an acrobatic layup that brought the Warriors from even at 61 to a plus-nine differential that eventually set the tone for the game and the quarter.
“Not surprising,” Kerr said of Curry’s performance, according to ESPN’s Chris Haynes. “It usually happens at some point during the game. But that’s ultimately what loosens the game up and what gets us going is Steph’s offense, and Steph’s high screens, and 3-point shots off those screens. For whatever reason, he seems to infuse us with energy. Kevin [Durant] keeps us going with just his methodical scoring. But when Steph and Klay [Thompson] get it going from three, that’s when our team really seems to take off.”
True to Kerr’s words, it’s what made the difference — the Rockets had bricked an NBA-record 27 straight 3-point attempts while the Warriors found ways to connect on theirs, delivering a devastating blow to the Houston defense and making their 11-point first-half lead a rather distant memory.
Curry played 11 of 12 third-quarter minutes before being relieved by Patrick McCaw as the team headed into the fourth quarter, having given the Warriors a lead they would never relinquish.
To this day, Curry is the only player to have hit seven 3-pointers in a Game 7 affair, having done so back in the 2016’s Western Conference Finals against now-teammate Kevin Durant and the Oklahoma City Thunder.