Steve Curry’s ability to crush skeptics terrifies former Warriors star Tim Hardaway

As someone who entered the league with a vulnerable mindset, former Warrior star Tim Hardaway believes he understands what fuels the greatness of current Warrior star Stephen Curry.

A deep desire to prove, on a daily basis, not only that he belongs in the NBA but also his place at the top of the league.

“What he’s doing, how he’s doing it, it’s crazy,” Hardaway told NBC Sports Bay Area this week. “That’s crazy. It’s ridiculous. And the syllable he’s doing? That’s crazy.”

“I know why he would do it this way. A lot of people thought he went out of the house and it was over. That he was going to get hurt, that his career would be over with ankle injuries.”

Curry missed part of his second season with recurring ankle problems – sprains, twists, twists and discs – and underwent surgery that forced him to miss most of his third season. Frequent injuries have led to concerns about the quality of his NBA career.

Curry’s answer came in his fourth season, when he played 78 of 82 games and led the Warriors to postseason for the second time in 19 seasons. He missed just 14 games over the next four seasons, won back-to-back MVP awards and led the Warriors to two NBA Championships.

“He worked to strengthen his ankles,” Hardaway said. And he came back and showed people, ‘Yeah, I’m here to stay and I’m here to play hard and I’m here to win games for this organization and win championships.

“I praise him.”

Hardaway, like the rest of the sports world, was particularly impressed with Curry’s performance in the 2022 Postseason, which culminated in the Warriors winning their fourth NBA Finals in eight seasons and earning Steve their first Finals Player of the Year award.

“I could see how focused he was,” Hardaway said. “How focused he was and how he was playing there and understanding what he had to do in order for his team to win. And he went out there and did it – offensively and defensively.”

Curry hit 39.7 percent from distance in the post-season, including 43.7 percent in the Finals against the Celtics’ defense. During four series, he fired 45.9 percent from the field.

During the Western Conference Finals against Dallas, Mavericks coach Jason Kidd highlighted Curry’s fitness, perhaps the most important aspect of his game that is not publicized enough.

“Steve is the best athlete in this game,” Kidd said.

Hardaway credited this comment, praising Carrie’s fitness while introducing all those who strive to be cool.

He said: “The reason (some guys) aren’t really good, is because () they don’t make the time and work that Steve puts in, to go out there shooting and running and fitness his way.

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“It’s a daily thing. … It’s every day, every day, for years and years and years. I commend Steve for getting out there and playing really hard in every game.”

As someone who was barely 6 feet tall when he made it to the NBA in 1989, Hardaway has had his share of skeptics. Like Carrie, he proved capable of shattering doubts and making every skeptic eat his opinions.

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