Curry shares how he will avoid foul trou­ble

The Tribune (SLO) - - Sports - BY MARK ME­D­INA

OAK­LAND

To show­case his deft shooting touch, Stephen Curry of­ten launches the ball from 30 feet and be­yond. Curry’s lat­est trick, how­ever, ad­dressed a weak­ness in­stead of high­light­ing a strength.

In hopes that he does not hear a whis­tle seem­ingly ev­ery time he de­fends, Curry has tried to play with his hands be­hind his back.

“I liked it. He can’t reach,” War­riors coach Steve Kerr said. “He’s prob­a­bly giv­ing him­self a re­minder that way.”

And why not? The War­riors en­ter Game 5 of their firstround se­ries against the Los An­ge­les Clip­pers on Wed­nes­day at Or­a­cle Arena with Curry av­er­ag­ing 4.3 fouls per game. Few ac­tual NBA play­ers stand a chance in stop­ping Curry. But the whis­tle has proven to be one ef­fec­tive de­fender.

To sharpen his fo­cus be­fore Game 4 on Sun­day, Curry wrote an important mes­sage on his shoes. On his left shoe, Curry in­scribed the word “No.” On his right shoe,” Curry wrote the word “Reach.” Then once the game started, Curry col­lected four fouls, any­way.

Kerr would rather Curry play no de­fense if he can­not de­fend with­out foul­ing. After all, the War­riors need Curry on the floor to score and play­make. When he is on the bench, Curry can do nei­ther. Then when Kerr sits him be­cause of foul trou­ble, Curry ad­mit­tedly strug­gles ad­just­ing to the changed ro­ta­tion.

“It does shock your body a little bit,” Curry ad­mit­ted. “But at the end of the day, we’re all able to ad­just on the fly. You have to be able to do that.”

Usu­ally Curry has been able to do that.

Curry scored 38 points while going 11-of-16 from the field and 8-of-12 from 3 in Game 1 de­spite col­lect­ing four fouls. The War­riors may have squan­dered a 31-point lead in Game 2 after Curry col­lected his third of four fouls early in the third quar­ter. But Curry still had 29 points while shooting 8-of-18 over­all and 5-of-11 from deep. And while get­ting called for five fouls in Game 3, Curry had 21 points on 7-of-11 shooting and 4-of-6 from 3. In Game 4? Dif­fer­ent story. Curry finished with 12 points while shooting 3-of-14 from the field and 1-of-9 from the perime­ter along with four fouls.

“I still get frus­trated. But at the end of the day, the pride you take in your game isn’t re­ally about that,” Curry said. “It’s the little stuff you do to help your team win.”

In Curry’s case, min­i­miz­ing his fouls would fall in that cat­e­gory.

Even if it re­quires Curry to de­fend with his hands be­hind his back.

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