The stars are aligned in New Orleans this weekend for the NBA’s annual All-Star Game.
It’s the perfect stage to remind everyone that Miami’s LeBron James and/or Oklahoma City’s Kevin Durant is the game’s best shooter, right? Not according to James and Durant.
“Steph Curry [of the Golden State Warriors] is the best shooter ever,” Durant said Friday afternoon during Media Day. “His shot is just so effortless.”
Curry, who is fifth in the league in scoring (24.6 points) and 15th in 3-point shooting (41.5 percent), appreciates the admiration coming from Durant, who is in a race with James for this year’s Most Valuable Player award.
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“Any time you get a compliment from arguably one of the two best players in the league right now, that’s definitely something I don’t take for granted,” Curry said. “[Durant is] a guy that’s playing unbelievable right now. So for him to notice the way that I play and what I can bring to the game, it’s cool. And I appreciate it.”
James, who has been the NBA’s Most Valuable Player four of the past five years, nodded in agreement with Durant’s assessment of Curry.
“I was going to Steph Curry’s games when he was in college [at Davidson], and I knew he was special,” James said. “I was there when he was able to do it — not against his conference in college — but against the big teams, in the [NCAA] Tournament, and also against North Carolina.
“His motor and his ability to shoot the ball, not only off the dribble, but on screens, and pick-and-rolls, and his ability to handle the ball, I thought he could be very special, and obviously I was correct. I’m just not a GM, and I wasn’t able to draft him.”
LeBron to Mavs?
James is a major Dallas Cowboys fan. So much so that he was at the first game played at Cowboys Stadium in Arlington in 2009 against the New York Giants.
So, naturally, James was asked Friday when he becomes a free agent this summer if he’d consider coming to play for Dallas.
“That the Dallas Cowboys will take me?” James asked, then he started laughing.
When asked if he would consider coming to play for the Dallas Mavericks, so he could be a stone’s throw away from the Cowboys, James got serious and said: “I have no idea, man. I’m not even thinking about free agency right now.
“Right now I’m focusing on obviously this weekend. But beyond that, I’m just trying to put our team in a position to win another championship.”
Durant stealing shot
When asked where he came up with his one-legged, fall-away jump shot, Durant wasn’t bashful with his answer.
“I stole it from No. 41,” Durant said, referring to Mavericks forward Dirk Nowitzki. “It’s unblockable, because you’re fading away, you’ve got a leg up. It’s one of those shots where any time, you can just fall back and shoot it. Dirk hit that against us plenty of times in my young career, so I decided to try to take it from him.”
Stern to Hall
David Stern, who retired Feb. 1 after being the NBA’s commissioner for 30 years, was elected Friday to the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.
Tim Hardaway, Kevin Johnson, Alonzo Mourning and Spencer Haywood are all finalists who hope to join Stern in the class of 2014. The entire class will be announced April 7 at the NCAA Final Four in Arlington.