Sunday was another great day for Stephen Curry and the Warriors as they wrapped up two important distinctions.
First, the team secured eighth place in the Western Conference with a 113-101 victory over the Grizzlies, their sixth win in a row. That means it will play a win-and-in game against the Trail Blazers or Lakers in the NBA’s inaugural play-in tournament. A loss to Memphis would have dropped Golden State to ninth and forced it to win twice in the play-in to reach the playoffs.
Second, Curry secured the NBA scoring title for the 2020-21 season with this first-quarter basket.
With this basket, @StephenCurry30 has secured the 2020-21 @NBA scoring title 👏 pic.twitter.com/oenaw1PNb5
— Golden State Warriors (@warriors) May 16, 2021
The bucket was part of a 46-point effort in which Curry jacked up a career-high 36 shots (making 16) and 22 3-point attempts. He also had nine assists and seven rebounds, but his scoring was what was most needed as he accounted for 40.7 percent of the Warriors’ points.
MORE: NBA play-in tournament, explained
Curry himself made more 3-point shots than the Grizzlies did Sunday.
9 — Steph Curry
6 — The Grizzlies pic.twitter.com/CUna378yKh
— StatMuse (@statmuse) May 16, 2021
Curry finished the season averaging a career-high 32.0 points per game. It was just his second season averaging 30-plus points per game. The other came in 2015-16 when he averaged 30.1 points and won his first scoring title.
His ’20-21 numbers could have been even better. He averaged 36.9 points in his final 24 games. He totaled fewer than 30 points just twice in that span and shot 49.1 percent percent from the field.
He carried the Warriors to a potential playoff berth with Klay Thompson (Achilles) unavailable. Now, he’ll look to take the team farther.