OAKLAND — As Stephen Curry made his way back to the huddle — with a giant grin on his face — the MVP chants rained down.
Three nights after missing all 10 shots he took from beyond the arc in the Golden State Warriors’ blowout loss to the Los Angeles Lakers, the back-to-back MVP had just connected on his 13th three pointer of the game to set a new NBA record.
“That was quite a show — not at all surprising the way Steph bounces back from bad nights,” head coach Steve Kerr said. “He’s done this before. Maybe not 13 of them, but he’s done it throughout his career where he comes right back off of a bad game and lights it up.”
In the Warriors’ 116-106 win over the New Orleans Pelicans on Monday night, Curry went 13-for-17 from downtown on his way to 46 points. The victory over the Pelicans, who fall to 0-7, could have been much more comfortable than it ultimately was.
Curry put himself on track for his historic night midway through the second quarter when the Warriors held a narrow 44-40 advantage.
In the span of 71 seconds, Curry hit a trio of 3-pointers, sparking the Warriors to a 17-0 run and a 63-49 lead at the half.
Once the teams returned from the break, the Pelicans used a 22-9 run to erase the deficit and briefly claim a 72-71 advantage.
“The drawback tonight, the downside, was the last two minutes of the second quarter,” Kerr explained. “We had about a 20-point lead and I think they cut it to 14, and that seemed to carry over into the third.”
Curry, who went 4-for-5 from 3-point range during the quarter, made sure the Warriors would avoid a full-on collapse.
Curry added his 11th, 12th and record-setting 13th three-pointer in the fourth quarter to help seal the win.
“The last three were pretty special,” Curry said. “The flow of the game was pretty close and I made one or two that I call tough ones. The last one was just kind of a heat check and [you] just see if it goes in or not and thankfully it did.”
Curry previously shared the old record with Kobe Bryant and Donyell Marshall.
“Every since I tied it the first time, I thought about what it would take to get one more,” Curry said.
“These are records that are nice to have. I’m sure they’ll be broken — hopefully long down the line — the way the games going, the way guys are shooting you never know. But it’s nice to have it.”
Klay Thompson was the Warriors second-leading scorer, as the guard went for 24 points, making 11-for-20 from the field. Kevin Durant chipped in 22 points, as the Warriors’ new superstar made history of his own.
With his showing against the Pelicans, Durant has now scored at least 20 points in 71 consecutive games, which is tied for the fifth-longest streak in NBA history.
While Curry, Thompson and Durant combined for 92 points in the win and Draymond Green contributed an untraditional double-double (12 rebounds, 11 assists), the center spot remains an ongoing issue for the Warriors.
Zaza Pachulia started the game, but played just 11 minutes, as he produced the team’s worst plus-minus (-14) of the night. Kevon Looney, who continues to climb the depth chart, entered for Pachulia midway through the first quarter and was actually the first sub that Kerr called on, but failed to grab a board.
The Warriors return to action on Wednesday for a home game against the Dallas Mavericks.