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Talkin' 'bout Steph

Neither Draymond Green's halftime meltdown nor Oklahoma City's defense had any effect on Stephen Curry

POSTED: Feb 28, 2016 2:45 AM ET

By Fran Blinebury

BY Fran Blinebury


— Ice water has Steph Curry running through its veins. Penguins look at him and shiver. The other side of the pillow thinks he's cooler.

This isn't funny anymore. Because the basketball world is going to pull all of its collective muscles reaching for newer, bigger, grander descriptions.

The official play-by-play sheet called it simply a 32-foot pull-up jump shot.

And Everest is just a mountain.

The last time something like that fell so far and so fiery and so spectacularly out of the sky was probably the meteor that wiped out the dinosaurs.

Speaking of dinosaurs, what do Oscar Robertson, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Cedric Ceballos and the rest of the gang from the Crankyzoic Era have to say about this one?

True or False: Oscar Robertson Is Right About Terrible Defense On Curry

Is bad defense part of the reason Curry is having the year he is?

When Russell Westbrook missed the jumper near the end of overtime, Andre Iguodala grabbed the rebound and shoveled it ahead to Curry, nobody inside Chesapeake Energy Arena or the rest of the TV-watching, tongue-swallowing world could imagine what would happen next.

Curry didn't run, he walked. More than walked, he strolled. A casual, carefree dribble or two across the mid-court line and then a look, maybe just a glance, a motion as nonchalant as flicking a speck of dust off your shoulder.

From there?

That 3-point rainbow that gave the Warriors a stunning 121-118 win over the Thunder Saturday night was probably the flat-out coolest thing since Shaft. Can't you hear Isaac Hayes and the theme music?

"He's one bad ...

"Shut your mouth.

"We're talkin' 'bout Steph!"

It was his 12th trey of the night and he became the first player in NBA history to make at least 10 from the behind the arc in back-to-back games. It gave him 288 3-pointers on the year, breaking his own league record with six weeks still left in the season. His 46 points gave him a scoring average of 43.6 for the week.

Nightly Notable: Stephen Curry

Steph Curry torched the opposition for 46 points, including 12 3-pointers to lead the Warriors over the Thunder in overtime.

"Obviously what Steph did was — what's the expression? — from the ridiculous to the sublime," said Warriors coach Steve Kerr. "That's where we are at this point."

Not just that he can pile up the off-the-charts numbers, but the way that he does it.

"When he pulled up he looked like, 'Whatever, it's going in,' " said teammate Draymond Green. "But to think that he's gonna make it. What was that, 40 feet? Like, it's absurd.

"Why are you shooting this from this deep? It's like three seconds left. ... Ask him."

The Thunder were just in a scramble to get themselves back down the floor to guard against a last shot, but not that kind. Not one from the Texas border. Andre Roberson was lost in transition and can be seen in the replays for eternity making a desperate and frantic run when he realized it was happening.

"Honestly, I don't know exactly where I am," Curry said. "It's not like I'm calibrating it in my head: 'All right, 38 feet, 37, 36. ... It's just literally you've got a sense that you've shot the shot plenty of times. You're coming across half court and you're timing up your dribbles and want to shoot before the defense closes in. That was pretty much my only thought.

"When I got the ball, I knew coach had said if we got a stop and a clean rebound, push it. I looked up. ... There was about five or six seconds left and the way they had shuffled around in transition, I was kinda just go at my own pace and rise up. I got my feet set and watched it go in."

Curry Wins The Game

Stephen Curry hits an insane 3-point bomb to put the icing on the cake as the Warriors beat the Thunder by 3.

The shot went in and allowed the Warriors to become the first NBA team to clinch a playoff berth in February since the 1987-88 Lakers. It was a franchise record 29th road win of the season.

Now, with 17 of Golden State's last 24 games of the season home at Oracle, the 72-win NBA record of the 1995-96 Bulls is not only possible, but likely. Why not 73? Or 75? Over even running the table to 77?

Would you really bet against the Warriors? If so, this was the night. They were clobbered by OKC 62-32 on the backboards and still won. They survived a soft opening two quarters, a profanity-laden tirade/meltdown at halftime by Green that practically peeled the paint off the locker room walls and could be heard in the hallways. They led for exactly 29 seconds on the entire night.

They were down by four points with 14.5 seconds in regulation time and forced overtime when Klay Thompson made a layup, made a steal, Green made a save and then Andre Iguodala pulled up for a shot and drew a foul on Kevin Durant with 0.7 seconds on the clock. Then Iguodala, a 61 percent foul shooter, made two free throws to force overtime.

The Warriors trailed by five in overtime and were still down by three with 33.9 left. Until Thompson drove for a three-point play to tie it at 118-all. Then the artist Curry was handed the paintbrush one more time.

It's gotten to the point that it's not the volume anymore or the degree of difficulty, but the way he makes it looks so damn easy.

"I've seen it," said Thompson, whose 32-point night gets lost in the exhaust fumes of a hysterical victory. "Everyone in this locker room, we've seen him practice from that range every day. He's got the greatest range I've ever seen. He makes it look so effortless. That was a ballsy shot. But, shoot, with seven seconds left, I'd always love to have him with the ball."

Cooler than Shaft.

We're talkin' 'bout Steph.

Fran Blinebury has covered the NBA since 1977. You can e-mail him here and follow him on Twitter.

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