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Stephen Curry breaks all-time NBA three-point record

Curry hit five three-pointers as the Warriors pulled away late to beat the Knicks 105-96.

Steph Curry of the Golden State Warriors. (file photo)
Steph Curry of the Golden State Warriors. (file photo)
Image: Alamy Stock Photo

GOLDEN STATE WARRIORS Stephen Curry eclipsed Ray Allen’s all-time record for NBA three-pointers on Tuesday, savoring a “beautiful moment” at storied Madison Square Garden.

Curry, whose remarkable shooting range has revolutionized the NBA in his 13-year tenure, matched Allen’s record with his 2,973rd career three-pointer.

It came on his first shot of the clash with the New York Knicks, less than two minutes into the contest, and had the crowd on its feet.

He then missed a chance at breaking the record, but with 7:33 remaining in the opening period, Anthony Wiggins kicked the ball to him from the paint and he swished in number 2,974, letting out a yell as teammates celebrated with him and the New York crowd cheered.

“I can’t say it enough, I appreciate so much the way the fans embraced the moment with me and let me just get kind of lost in it,” Curry, 33, said.

“Hell yeah!” teammate Draymond Green shouted as the Warriors called a timeout and photographers gathered around Curry. “That’s greatness!”

Curry has been scorching towards overtaking Allen’s record for years. He finally surpassed the milestone in his 789th career game; Allen achieved his old benchmark in 1,300 appearances.

Curry exchanged an emotional hug with coach Steve Kerr, who corralled the ball used in the record-setting shot.

Curry then embraced his father, former NBA player Dell Curry, as well as Allen, who was courtside.

“There was a lot of emotion for sure because I know how much work has gone into this, dreaming big from the time I first picked up a basketball,” Curry said.

Kerr said the moment was “more emotional” than he had expected.

“It was just an outpouring of love and support for Steph from seemingly everybody in the building,” Kerr said. “Beautiful, beautiful moment.”

Curry is on pace to make well over 400 three-pointers this season, which would put him at more than 3,200 for his career.

He finished the night with five three-pointers as the Warriors pulled away late to beat the Knicks 105-96 and improve their league-leading record to 23-5.

Curry’s long-range prowess is such that there was real belief he could break the record with a single-game mark of 16 in a home game against the Portland Trail Blazers last Wednesday.

That didn’t happen, but he did not have to wait too much longer.

Curry’s 54-point performance against the Knicks on February 27, 2013 at Madison Square Garden was a harbinger of a career that now includes three NBA titles and two Most Valuable Player awards.

“It’s been a long week since our last home game, where everybody was talking about 16,” he said.

“(It) seemed like every shot I took there was another level of anticipation and anxiousness around it. I was just trying to play my game. Tonight it kind of set up perfectly, made that first one, get that one out of the way and then just let the record-breaker come to me.”

The atmosphere was electric even before the game, with Allen courtside and Reggie Miller, who held the three-point record at 2,560 before Allen broke it in 2011, on duty as a television commentator.

After the game, Allen and Miller presented Curry with a jersey with the number 2,974 emblazoned on it.

“Basketball history, this is pretty special,” Curry said. “These two, legends. I watched them growing up and understood what it meant to shoot the ball because of them and my dad. 

“Full-circle moment, man. I’m blessed, blessed for sure.”

Reaction from around the league was swift.

“Just landed in Dallas to see @StephenCurry30 broke the record and to make it even doper he did it in the GARDEN!!” Los Angeles Lakers superstar LeBron James tweeted. “WOW CONGRATS BROTHER!! INCREDIBLE.”

NBA commissioner Adam Silver called Curry’s achievement “thrilling.”

Former Lakers great Magic Johnson congratulated Curry “for making history.”

“Thank you @StephenCurry30 for revolutionizing the game of basketball forever!” 

Elsewhere, a Brooklyn Nets team rocked by the absence of seven players because of coronavirus clawed out an unlikely 131-129 overtime victory over the Toronto Raptors.

The Nets had the league-minimum eight players available at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, where star James Harden and Bruce Brown were late scratches.

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The Nets had announced earlier in the day that starters LaMarcus Aldridge and DeAndre Bembry would miss the game.

Jevon Carter and James Johnson were also added to the virus list, joining Paul Millsap, who entered the NBA’s Covid-19 protocols on Monday.

Kevin Durant helped the Nets pull through with a triple-double of 34 points, 13 rebounds and 11 assists.

Durant, who had been listed as “questionable” to play because of a sore ankle, played a game-high 48:11 minutes.

Patty Mills added a season-high 30 points and forced overtime with a three-pointer with 13.1 seconds remaining in regulation.

All of the Nets players in the Covid protocol had to provide proof of vaccination in order to play in Brooklyn, under New York City’s coronavirus rules.

Under NBA guidelines, vaccinated players are placed in Covid protocols when they test positive or have an inconclusive result. They must quarantine for 10 days or until they have two negative tests within 24 hours.

The Nets aren’t the only NBA team grappling with an uptick in Covid cases.

The Los Angeles Lakers cancelled their last practice before they were due to travel to Dallas on Tuesday after Talen Horton-Tucker tested positive for Covid-19.

That came a day after the NBA postponed games for the first time this season due to Covid-19 with Chicago’s game against the Detroit Pistons on Tuesday and Thursday’s clash with the Toronto Raptors both called off.

The league said 10 Bulls players were currently unavailable after entering Covid-19 health and safety protocols, while “additional staff members” were also unavailable.

Thirty-one games were postponed during the 2020-2021 season.

© – AFP, 2021

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