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Whether he likes it or not, Steph Curry is the oldest, most experienced person inside the Golden State Warriors locker room.
Curry, who turned 31 in March, is getting ready to enter his 11th season with the Warriors this fall — a team that’s going to look much different than it has in recent years. Kevin Durant is now with the Brooklyn Nets, veteran Andre Iguodala was traded to the Memphis Grizzlies and the team waived Shaun Livingston this summer.
And Klay Thompson, though staying with the Warriors, will miss a major chunk of the season while recovering from an ACL injury.
While being a leader isn’t anything new for Curry, being called “old” is.
“Just hearing it is weird, but I’m still young,” Curry said, via USA Today. “I wake up every day with a smile on my face, with the opportunity I have in front of me, being in my prime, being able to play basketball at the highest level and do it with this team in front of our fan base, and I know I have a lot, a lot of years left at this level.
“It doesn’t change anything, but just makes me laugh, and for people to notice some gray hairs that might pop out every once in a while.”
Curry won’t ever leave the court
Now that he’s the oldest on the team and still in his “prime,” there’s no reason for Curry to ever leave the court this season.
“48 minutes a game for all 82,” Curry joked, via USA Today. “It’s pretty much confirmed by Coach Kerr just a minute ago. Very excited about that.”
Obviously, Curry’s exaggerating. Playing that much — especially at his age — would almost certainly take a major toll on a player. He is already, though, used to playing a lot of minutes for the Warriors.
Curry has averaged 33.22 minutes per game throughout Golden State’s run over the past half-decade, in which they reached the NBA Finals in five consecutive years.
So unless something goes wrong, expect Curry to keep getting minutes.
“There’s no plans to rest him unless something develops,” Warriors general manager Bob Myers said, via USA Today. “I don’t think he’s of that mind.”
The only issue that could arise, Myers said, is the temptation to give him more minutes.
“Steve likes the minutes he had,” Myers said, via USA Today. “The bigger discipline will be do you increase those, and I don't think Steve is of that mindset. But with potentially less margin for error, there may be opportunities where we say we've got to put Steph back in the game, that'll require discipline.”
Even though he’s got a new supporting cast around him — and isn’t a favorite to win the championship anymore — the Warriors’ resident old man isn’t changing his game one bit.
He’s sticking to what he knows.
“I have the same mentality no matter who’s out on the floor and working off those guys and how I can make an impact on the floor,” Curry said, via USA Today. “It doesn't mean I’m taking every shot. You try to make other players better. I’ve been fortunate to play with some extremely talented guys, and we’ve all made each other better. But coming into this year, it’s the same mentality.”
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