featured-image
(Photo by Garrett Ellwood/NBAE via Getty Images)

Stephen Curry Defeats Sabrina Ionescu in Historic 3-Point Challenge During All-Star Saturday Night

In the first competition of its kind, Stephen Curry and and Sabrina Ionescu did not let down expectations for the first-ever NBA vs. WNBA 3-Point Challenge.

"That was perfect," Curry said of the competition. "Great entertainment, great shooting, both sides."

Stephen Curry Records 29 Points to Win Sabrina vs. Stephen Challenge

Curry and Ionescu's 3-point challenge took place right after the NBA's 3-Point Contest, with Damian Lillard winning with a score of 26.

Ionescu, shooting from the NBA's 3-point line went first, and made her first 7 shots before finishing with a total of 26 points, which matched the high of any NBA player in the prior competition.

"Absolutely," Curry said on if he nervous after Ionescu's performance. "I saw the first rack and she made the first seven and I was having flashbacks of watching this summer."

Curry went second and put on a performance to remember, recording 29 points, slightly edging out Ionescu.

"This couldn't have gone any better," Curry said after winning. "Us two taking the chance in front of this stage, one round, with all the hype and to deliver like that, she set the bar. It was unbelievable to watch.

"For us to deliver a show like that was perfect. As much excitement as you can build in that short amount of time, two great shooters going at it. Pretty special. This will be something we will remember for a long time."

Stephen Curry After Winning Sabrina vs. Stephen Challenge

On the potential of this challenge happening again in the future, Ionescu is ready to compete again for the championship belt.

"We've been talking about finding different ways to change this up next," she said. "I think he has a partner in mind that is going to join him, so I'm open to any partner that can help me win and take that belt that he has away from him."

Warriors Talk: Stephen Curry and Sabrina Ionescu After 3-Point Challenge

Ionescu, who is originally from the Bay Area, spoke of what it meant to compete against Curry on this stage.

“Being from the Bay Area and just a young kid who wanted to be like him and was able to watch him at games, get to know him, who he is as a person off the court and who he is on the court as well,” she said. “Being able to have that role model from a really young age has shaped who I am and the player that I am today in just emulating everything that he stands for.

“So, understanding that I was out here kinda shooting for that young, little girl that is at every single game and knowing that I couldn’t believe of an opportunity that was as big as this, in terms of being able to go up against my role model and what he’s meant to me in my career.”

The sentiment was similar from Curry on being able to compete against Ionescu.

“It’s like the full circle moment of her being from the Bay, being a part of Dub Nation since she was a kid and to now having a competition like this that has never been done before,” Curry said. “Nobody has ever seen it, and for us to deliver the way we did, it was special.

“This will be something that goes down in history books. Hopefully, will have a huge imprint and impact on anybody who watched it and our foundations as well, who benefitted from it. Checked a lot of boxes tonight. It was amazing.”

As part of the competition, Curry’s Eat.Learn.Play. nonprofit and Ionescu’s SI20 Foundation received a donation from the NBA and WNBA. In addition, each shot made by Curry and Ionescu triggered a donation from State Farm to the NBA Foundation to support economic empowerment in the Black community. Each regular 3-pointer made was valued at $1,000, the money ball at $2,000 and the “STARRY Range Ball” – a deep 3-pointer from 29 feet, 9 inches away – at $3,000.

Stephen Curry will take the court once again on Sunday, when he represents the Western Conference in the All-Star Game (4 p.m PT, TNT). The game will mark the 10th All-Star Game of Curry’s career, tying Paul Arizin for the most in Warriors’ history.