Basketball legend Shaquille O'Neal recently lauded Stephen Curry for the transformative role he's played in redefining the game, particularly with his unparalleled 3-point shooting ability. This revolutionary skillset has significantly influenced current players, driving them to master the 3-pointer even over some traditional basketball basics.
In a candid conversation on Showtime's "All the Smoke," the NBA icon delved into Curry's undeniable impact, especially on the younger generation. "Every time I surf the web, there's an overwhelming number of young kids emulating Curry's long-range shots.
He's not just revolutionizing the sport; he's offering hope to many," O'Neal shared. Reflecting on the prominence of giants in the game like Rudy Gobert, Duncan Robinson, Tim Duncan, and Dirk Nowitzki, O'Neal recognized their contribution.
But he emphasized, "It's the tireless efforts and dedication that leads to such grand achievements. Curry's ascendancy, in particular, is a testament to that."
Curry Challenges Norms
O'Neal's admiration for the Golden State Warriors' guard doesn't end there.
He believes Curry has shattered preconceived notions about the 'big men' who ruled the league. "The magic of Curry is that he's made aspiring players, irrespective of their height, believe in the power of skill over size," Shaq said.
While acknowledging Curry's game-changing impact, O'Neal confessed that the sharpshooter has made him rethink many of his basketball beliefs, revealing a deep-seated respect for the player. As the discussions shifted towards the game's stalwarts, the name of Kevin Garnett, former powerhouse of the Boston Celtics and a crucial figure in their 2008 championship win, came up.
Having witnessed Curry's astounding ascent, Garnett, in talks with ex-teammates Paul Pierce and Matt Barnes, expressed his awe. "Curry didn't just modify the way we approach shooting; he consistently redefined it. Now, every guard under 6 feet envisions themselves in Curry's shoes, believing they can shoot from anywhere on the court." Stephen Curry's illustrious career saw him break the coveted record held by Ray Allen for the most NBA 3-pointers in December 2021.
With accolades like a four-time NBA champion title, two league MVPs, and a Finals MVP, Curry's journey in basketball is nothing short of legendary.