Golden State Warriors star Steph Curry became the second oldest player in NBA history to score 60 points in a game after exploding for a career-high 62 in a 137-122 win over the Portland Trailblazers on Sunday night.
Facing criticism after a slow start to the new season, Curry generated most of his team’s points in a statement victory, making eight three-pointers and slithering through the Trailblazers’ defense at the Chase Center.
The 32-year-old surpassed his previous career high of 54 points and joined NBA legend Pete Maravich as the only NBA players in the last 50 years to score more than 30 points in both halves, according to the Elias Sports Bureau.
The former league MVP is also the second oldest player to cross the 60-point plateau, sitting only behind the late Kobe Bryant, who at 37 years old, scored 60 points in his last NBA game.
Amid questions whether Curry could lift his team back to its championship-winning ways, he was asked whether he took that personally.
“Cue the Jordan meme: ‘I take all that personally,'” he told reporters with a smile. “I had an opportunity to assert my will on the game early and create some energy.”
Teammate Draymond Green marveled at Curry’s legendary performance.
“I think that was right up there with the best of them, just because of all the talk that’s been going around,” Green said.
“He came out looking like a man on a mission,” he added.
Warriors head coach Steve Kerr lamented that Curry’s historic scoring outburst was played in front of a nearly empty arena as the pandemic prevented fan attendance at the Chase Center. A plan proposed by the Warriors to bring fans back to the arena at 50% capacity was rejected in November.
“These games are eerie,” Kerr said. “You come into this beautiful building and we’re so used to our fans packing every seat and going crazy and it’s really sad — every game — home or road. I just feel sad for what’s happening with the pandemic and we’re blessed and lucky to play, but I look forward to the day when fans are back in our building.”