Stephen Curry is undeniably one of the best players in the NBA and looks well on his way to winning his third MVP award. The Golden State Warriors sit on top of the Western Conference with an 18-2 record, but the Phoenix Suns are right behind them with a 16-game win streak and a 17-3 record. The two teams play Tuesday night in Phoenix.
Should Devin Booker, who is leading the Suns right now, be put in the same class as Curry? Stephen A. Smith, analyst on "First Take" on ESPN, doesn’t believe so and thinks Curry is already the MVP of the league.
Smith, on his show, said,
“Devin Booker is the truth, no doubt. But Steph Curry is just on another level. And when you consider the fact that he is the ‘baby-faced assassin’ and he has the rep, and the game to go with it, plus he is older now, and on top of that there is no Klay [Thompson], and he is still doing what he is doing”
Stephen Curry does seem to be on another level this year and has just exploded so far. This season, Curry is averaging a league-high 28.6 points, 6.8 assists and 5.3 rebounds per game. On top of that, he is shooting an insane number of 3-pointers, attempting 13.1 per game and making 42% of them.
Curry has been on another level this season and should be the frontrunner for the MVP award with all he does for the Warriors, a team that has been the best in the NBA.
How close is Devin Booker to Stephen Curry's level?
It is hard to argue with Stephen A. Smith’s analysis that Stephen Curry is just on another level, because it looks like that if you watch a Warriors game.But it's hard not to recognize Devin Booker early in the season.
Last season, a lot of Booker’s stats took a hit because he had to play a different style of basketball on a winning team with Chris Paul. Now it seems like his statistics haven’t improved, but as a player, Booker has gotten a lot better.
Booker is averaging 23.9 points, 5.1 rebounds and 4.7 assists per game this season, with his 3-point percentage going up to 41% on more attempts, 6.1 attempts per game. None of these stats come close to what Stephen Curry is doing, which is why Curry is on that other level.
On the other hand, Booker would be on that level if there was a level just below what Curry is doing. Even though his stats don’t seem incredible, it is all contributing to winning. Booker leads the team with the second-best record in the NBA in points and is second in assists, third in rebounds and tops in 3-pointers made and attempted.
Stephen Curry is correctly being praised for his fantastic season, and if it continues, he is a no-brainer MVP, but that should not take away from what Booker is doing. Booker may not get any first-place MVP votes, but he is a valuable piece of the Suns' success this season.
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