The NBA used to be a league of set positions, all with a defined role. However, that’s greatly changed over time. Every single spot shifted over the past few years, with players being asked to take on new responsibilities with each passing season. That’s especially true for guards.
In this guide, I will look at Stephen Curry’s position and explain how, like everything else, it’s altered over time. Analyzing the way he plays the game will shine a light on, not just how the league’s changed over the past decade, but Curry’s undeniable role within that change.
In a league where so many players wear so many different hats, Curry is undoubtedly a point guard. When he’s on the court he runs the Warrior’s offense, and has done so since they first drafted him way back in 2009. He passes, shoots, and drives with lethal efficiency.
His ability to see the floor is what turned him into a premier NBA point guard, and his unmatched ability to score is what elevated him from a good to great player. However, the three shooting didn’t just alter his own career, it shifted the entire league.
A New NBA
Today’s NBA point guards have to be dual-threats. Not only do they need to pass well and see open lanes, they also have to shoot. All of the top players have a strong three-point shot that they can hit from far away. Even so, it wasn’t always that way.
Back in the day, point guard was a drive-first or pass-first position. The one would set up the court, work at the top of the key, and then cut in or slash to get themselves or their teammates open. They would occasionally pull up, but it was never the first option.
Curry changed all that. His ability to shoot on the fly, as well as the way he stretched the court, completely altered the game. It didn’t just make the point position more offense oriented, it totally switched up how they operated.
A True Ambassador
Going off the above information, Curry is a modern point guard in every sense of the word. He’s a bit undersized, relies on quickness, and always looks to shoot when he comes up the court. In that way, his passing and drives are built into his scoring rather than the other way around.
Even beyond his ability to get the ball in the basket, Curry is an anomaly in that he’s a superstar who doesn’t break the rules. Many modern point guards are quite large, which reflects the NBA’s trend to get bigger over the past few years, and they rely on their size to score.
Curry is still one of the best players to ever set foot on the court, and he manages to do that without switching to different roles. He’s a one-note player who is able to thrive in the system without needing a big frame. That, mixed with his deep three shooting, makes him one of a kind.
Stephen Curry is a point guard’s point guard. He shoots from the outside, completely runs the offense, and dishes out plenty of assists. Even so, his proclivity for outside scoring completely changed the position as fans know it.
What was once a pass-first role switched into a score-first position. Threes matter more, and being a dual-threat is almost a necessity.
While there’s no doubt that Curry exclusively embodies the point guard role, he does so in a way that nobody saw before he played.