Kerr praises Steph's joy for routine, calls star a ‘metronome'


Everyone watching Steph Curry during NBA games can see his greatness. It's evident, just as he showed during his iconic 43-point performance in Game 4 of the NBA Finals on Friday.

But there's a lot of work that goes into Curry being able to do that against an elite Boston Celtics defense.

During his 13-year NBA career, Curry has accomplished just about everything there is for a player to do. Despite what some in the national media opine, his legacy is set as the greatest player in Warriors franchise history and one of the best players in the history of basketball.

Curry could rest on his laurels and be satisfied with what he already has done. But that's not what the great ones do.

The 34-year-old Curry is in elite physical shape, very likely the best-conditioned player in the NBA. He's constantly moving on the court. When he doesn't have the basketball in his hands, he's always on the move, trying to relocate in order to find the next open shot.

Steve Kerr, who has coached Curry since 2014, has been around some of the legends of the game and is in awe of what Curry does.

"Just the consistency of his routine," Kerr told reporters Sunday. "It's like a metronome. I mean, every day, it's the exact same thing. He's in the training room, he's in the weight room, he's on the court. … It's clockwork, but there's also a sense of joy and energy within that work. He enjoys it so much. He loves the process. And I think that's one of the things that ties all great athletes together, like, I’m talking about the superstar athletes.

"You know, the Roger Federers of the world or the Steph Currys of the world. There's a routine that is not only super disciplined but it's really enjoyed each day. There's a passion that comes with it. And that's what sustains it over time and when you love something like those guys do, you work at it, you get better and you keep just keep going."

When Kerr's comments were relayed to Curry a few minutes later, he first joked about what his coach said.

"I got to get a list of all the people he's compared [me to]. Tim Duncan, Roger Federer, add it to the list," Curry said with a laugh.

Then Curry reflected on where his work ethic comes from and why it's still strong to this day.

"It goes back to how I started in the game back when I was playing AAU back in the day," Curry said. "I love to work. You kind of get lost in the sessions you have on the court in practice, in the weight room, wherever it is because you know it's going to lead to you being as prepared as possible for those games.

"Try to have as much fun as possible. Days that you do want to get up and do the work, days that you don't, days you're tired, all that kind of stuff. But it's all built on my approach from the time I started and just trying to carry that every year for as long as I can."

The best athletes in any sport always need to find ways to get better year after year. The competition always is getting better and wiser, so the greats need to add new tricks to their arsenal.

Curry won back-to-back NBA MVP awards in 2014-15 and 2015-16, and yet, here he is, in 2022, leading all players in the Finals in scoring (34.3), amazingly a full 12 points per game more than the next closest (Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown, both at 22.3).

"Win, lose, whatever it is, talking about how you play, you have to keep coming back to well to keep sharpening the tool kit and find ways to evolve your game," Curry said. "That is the hardest part of what we do. Going out there on the floor, everything is more reactive and you're kind of just living in the competition. But the hardest part of what we do is the grind of year-long prep that it takes to be great at this level."

RELATED: Praise from LeBron, NBA peers "means the world" to Steph

It's Curry's greatness that has transformed the Warriors organization from a lottery-bound team for years into a dynasty playing in its sixth NBA Finals in eight seasons. In large part because of Curry, Golden State has a chance to capture a fourth NBA title since 2015.

To be great, you have to want it. You have to put in the work behind the scenes that only a select few see. Curry puts in the work. Kerr sees it and he's forever appreciative of it.

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