Defender who ‘frustrates' Steph the most might be surprising

  • Programming note: Listen to the entire interview with Steph Curry on the latest edition of the Dubs Talk podcast out now, or watch the premiere tonight around 9 p.m. after Warriors Outsiders.

When teams prepare to play the Warriors, there's always a circle around Steph Curry's name. He's the guy for whom you must game-plan.

Curry has changed the way basketball is played, and therefore teams have needed to throw countless styles of defenses at him. This season alone, Curry has seen double teams, triple teams and even box-and-one defenses. All of that says one clear thing about Curry: It's nearly impossible to slow him down 1-on-1.

Very few individual players can get under Curry's skin. And the one who has done it the most hits close to home.

"Seth Curry is the one who frustrates me the most," Steph told NBC Sports Bay Area's Kendra Andrews and Grant Liffmann in the latest Dubs Talk podcast.

Steph's frustration with his brother peaked during Game 2 of the 2019 Western Conference finals when Seth, then with the Portland Trail Blazers, stole the ball four times from his older brother.

"He just has that look like, ‘I know what you’re going to do,' " Steph said. "I don’t know if he disarmed me a little bit because he was trying to be like we were in the backyard, but he was everywhere, and I couldn’t figure it out that one game."

The other players who top the list for "Steph's most frustrating defenders" are guys such as Jrue Holiday, Avery Bradley, Patrick Beverly and former NBA player Tony Allen. But not even those players get to Steph like his brother, who's now with the Philadelphia 76ers.

"There are guys that have a knack for being in the right place at the right time, being physical, studying your game, knowing your moves," Curry said. "Never in my mind are you scared when you come in like, 'They can stop you.' But you got to work a little harder that particular night, or play a little smarter."

Most recently, Facundo Campazzo was tasked with not only defending Curry but getting under his skin. Campazzo has been widely credited for his pest-like defense, and it's a big reason why the Denver Nuggets signed him during the offseason.

When the Warriors and the Nuggets faced off Tuesday night at Chase Center, you could tell Campazzo was doing his job.

"I was talking a lot of trash [that] night, for sure," Curry said.

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Campazzo did a good job -- just not good enough -- as Curry drained shot after shot over him and finished the night with 53 points while becoming the Warriors' all-time leading scorer, surpassing Wilt Chamberlain.

"The coach put them in there for that reason, and if they make it worse, that’s when you know you’re doing something special that night," Steph said. "Just knowing Campazzo, he’s a pest. Some guy asked me after the game how was he as a defender, and I said he brought the best out of me. That was true."

That's how Steph usually views these assignments -- as an opportunity to challenge himself to be even better and play even harder. He approaches each matchup with the respect it deserves and that the top-tier defenders garner. But at the same time, he knows he'll get his buckets. It's just a matter of how creative he must be to do it.

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