OAKLAND — The resurrection of the Golden State Warriors as a force in the NBA has been a slow one. But Thursday’s league announcements have solidified the team’s newfound prowess.
Not only was Warriors guard Stephen Curry named an All-Star starter for the second consecutive year, but the Western Conference All-Star team will be led by none other than Warriors coach Steve Kerr and his staff.
In his sixth NBA season, Curry, 26, is the first Warrior to be named a starter for consecutive All-Star teams since Chris Mullin (1991 and 1992). Curry earned the most votes of any player with 1,513,324 votes in the final balloting returns.
After hearing the news, Curry said he gets chills thinking about playing in the All-Star game and can’t wait to represent the Warriors:
“This means a lot and its something I don’t take for granted. To have the support of fans not only in the Bay Area but across the nation and across the world, supporting not only myself but my team, it means a lot.”
Kerr, who learned earlier in the day he was chosen to coach the Western Conference All-Star team, had no doubts about Curry being a starter, and said he expected guard Klay Thompson to also be on the team.
Kerr will be the first rookie coach to lead an All-Star team since Larry Bird in 1998. When asked what it was like being chosen to coach an All-Star team so early in his coaching career, Kerr said right now, life is perfect:
“It’s great. It’s surreal to think I just got into this gig and now to be coaching the All-Star game, it doesn’t seem real.”
Curry is averaging 23.2 points (sixth in the NBA) and 8.1 assists (fifth) to go with career highs of 4.8 rebounds and a league-leading 2.10 steals in 33.0 minutes through 40 games this season.
The sixth-year point guard is shooting a career-best 50.1 percent from the field, including 40.2 percent from three-point range, and 91.5 percent from the free throw line (fourth), on pace to join the eight players in NBA history who have hit percentages of 50/40/90 through the course of an entire season.
The 64th NBA All-Star Game in New York City will be seen by fans in 215 countries and territories and will be heard in 47 languages. TNT will televise the All-Star Game for the 13th consecutive year, Turner Sports’ 30th year of NBA All-Star coverage.