PORTLAND, Ore. — The soon-to-be back-to-back Most Valuable Player is back.
He announced it with authority against the Portland Trail Blazers in Game 4 on Monday.
The Golden State Warriors were outplayed for the majority of the contest. But that didn’t matter as the Dubs looked once again like the team that won the most regular season games ever.
They won 132-125 and will head home up 3-1 for Game 5 at Oracle Arena.
It took some time — about 30 minutes — to return to form, but Stephen Curry reminded the world on Monday why he’ll be awarded another MVP, as it was leaked to The Associated Press earlier in the day.
“The similarity [between Curry and Michael Jordan] is just the awe inspiring plays the jaw dropping plays that really bring the house down, even on the road,” Golden State head coach Steve Kerr said. “I remember those noises coming from the arena when Michael would have a game like that.”
The Dubs didn’t take their first lead until 3:45 in the 3rd quarter on a Klay Thompson 3-pointer, and they traded leads with the Blazers for most of the fourth quarter until Curry set up Harrison Barnes for a game-tying 3-pointer on a beautifully designed play by Kerr out of a timeout.
Curry then scored 17 of his 40 points in the extra period, the most in any overtime ever — regular season or playoffs.
“When Steph would have a game like this last year, assistant coach Alvin Gentry said we have two plays,” joked Kerr after the game, “get the ball to Steph, and Steph go get the ball.”
Do-everything forward Draymond Green finished with 21 points, nine rebounds, five assists, four steals and seven blocks.
Despite not playing since Game 4 of the Warriors’ series against the Rockets, Curry played 37 minutes, logging eight assists and nine rebounds, including a crucial offensive board and putback over Mason Plumlee in overtime.
“The heightened stakes of the playoffs — this is what I play for,” Curry said.
Portland appeared intent for most of the contest of shedding its image as Golden State’s little brother who can’t land the knockout punch. But Curry simply wouldn’t let them tie the series by turning to his familiar tricks: quick-trigger 3s and an ability to spark a back-breaking streak at the most opportune time.
They’ll return to Oakland for an elimination game on Wednesday.