Curry becomes 5th Warrior with 15,000 regular-season points
OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) — Stephen Curry missed his first three tries from deep, got a little frustrated and forgot about the 10 points he needed for another major milestone.
Curry had 20 points and seven rebounds while adding another accomplishment to his long list, leading the Golden State Warriors past the Memphis Grizzlies 110-93 on Monday night.
Curry became just the fifth player in Warriors history to score 15,000 points during the regular season — joining the company of Wilt Chamberlain, Rick Barry, Paul Arizin and Chris Mullin.
“It was a pretty cool moment, again just reflecting on the entire 9½ years and more to come,” Curry said. “Definitely appreciative of the opportunity, the milestone, hopefully a lot more to come.”
Kevin Durant scored 23 points to go with five assists and passed Larry Bird (21,791) for 33rd place on the NBA’s all-time scoring list. Klay Thompson contributed 16 points with five rebounds.
Golden State led by as many as 25 points in the second quarter in quickly turning the game into a rout. That allowed coach Steve Kerr to rest many of his regulars as the Warriors began a busy stretch with eight games before the end of the year, including Christmas night at home against LeBron James and the Lakers.
Marc Gasol had 15 points, six rebounds and six assists for the Grizzlies, who lost their third straight and fifth in six. This marked Memphis’ final visit to Oracle Arena before the Warriors move to new Chase Center in San Francisco next season. Omri Casspi added a season-high 20 points against his former team.
Gasol said the Grizzlies must talk as a team about ways to be better.
“There’s a few things that we need to do more of that we are doing well, and things that we’re not doing so well, do a little less,” he said.
Jonas Jerebko made Golden State’s only two 3s in the opening quarter and finished 16 points off the bench.
The Warriors were 17 of 18 from the free-throw line in the first half to 8 for 10 by Memphis, which trailed 61-38 at the break.
Curry’s 3-pointer at the 7:37 mark of the second quarter put him in the 15,000 club.
Kerr knows the number is hardly important to his star point guard, saying: “He’ll probably be at 16,000 before too long, and won’t be aware of that either.”
Curry is thrilled to join such elite company.
“Just a pretty humbling experience in terms of how long I’ve been here and all the success that we’ve had in recent years, and individual accolades and milestones come out of that,” he said.
Chamberlain leads the way with 17,783, followed by Barry (16,447), Arizin (16,266) and Mullin (16,235).
“It’s a lot of points and the thing to me what’s most impressive is how he creates them. They’re not just wide-open, catch-and-shoot 3s, his creativity with the ball in his hands,” Memphis coach J.B. Bickerstaff said. “The shot-making from all three levels, the left hand, the floaters, the three off the bounce, the walk across that half court line and shoot a three. He has a variety of ways he puts the ball in the basket. You can probably count on one hand how many guys that we’ve seen with the shot-making creatively and the ability that he has.”
Grizzlies: G Mike Conley missed the game with left hamstring soreness. F Kyle Anderson returned after missing one game with a sprained left ankle. … Memphis shot 2 for 11 on 3s in the first half and 7 of 25 in all. … The Grizzlies have been limited to fewer than 100 points in eight of nine December games. … Memphis has dropped five straight at Oracle Arena, also losing on Golden State’s home floor 117-101 on Nov. 5. … A top priority for Bickerstaff was improving rebounding, and the Grizzlies were edged 42-41 on the boards.
Warriors: F Andre Iguodala returned from a three-game absence with a sore right hip to score 10 points. G Shaun Livingston was back after bruising his pelvis and sitting out Friday at Sacramento. … Curry did a 19-minute Skype call this weekend with astronaut Scott Kelly and made sure Kelly and others knew he meant no harm with joke about not believing in the moon landing, according to the Warriors. … Baron Davis drew big cheers when shown on the scoreboard in the first quarter.
Grizzlies: Play the second game of their four-game West Coast trip at Portland on Wednesday night. The Grizzlies beat the Trail Blazers 92-83 at home last Wednesday.
Warriors: After concluding a four-game stretch playing in California, the Warriors play at Utah on Wednesday night.
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