With due respect to Pi Day, March 14 is about one person and one person only at the Bay Area Sports Hub.
That would be the birthday boy, Warriors guard Stephen Curry, of course.
Or should I say birthday man? Because Curry turns 33 years of age this year. But while Curry isn’t as young as he used to be (and hey, nobody is) he’s scoring like a younger man, with a 29.3 points-per-game average as Golden State prepares to face the Jazz on Sunday.
According to Marcus Thompson of The Athletic, Curry could become just the second NBA player — at age 33 or older by year’s end — to average more than 30 points a game for an entire season. The last player to do so? You guessed it. NBA legend and multiple-time winner of almost every award and honor imaginable: former Bulls guard Michael Jordan.
The highest scoring average for a player who ended a season 33 years old (or older) is, of course, Michael Jordan. He turned 33 in February of 1996 and finished the 1995-96 season averaging 30.4 points. That topped the previous high-water mark of 29.9 set by Dominique Wilkins, who turned 33 during the 1992-93 season.
Jordan averaged 29.6 points in 1996-97, which he finished at age 34. He almost did it twice.
If Curry finishes this year averaging 30 points, he’d be joining an exclusive old man club. (Note: Damian Lillard, averaging 29.7 at 30 years old, is also on the cusp).Marcus Thompson/The Athletic
Thompson goes on to list players that have averaged 30 points or more at an age above 30. Its definitely worth a read.
But I’m more focused on this 33-year-old Stephen Curry thing. Golden State needs him to come alive –with the help of his teammates — for this season’s fortunes to turn.
The Warriors are likely to fall below the .500 mark in Utah against the heavily favored Jazz, and regardless of that game’s result, Curry’s scoring average probably has to rise for his team to make the playoffs, or at the very least avoid the play-in portion of the tournament.
It won’t be easy for Curry to beat Jordan’s mark, however — not with coach Steve Kerr trying to implement young, inexperienced players, as he attempts to thread the needle between trying to win now and looking toward next season when star guard Klay Thompson returns.
Curry’s Jordan chasing is just another component to what’s been a highly-entertaining season, despite middling results. I personally can’t get enough of these Curry/Jordan comparisons. This latest comp is a great gift on Pi Day — oops! I mean, Stephen Curry Day.