The only thing more incredible than Steph Curry breaking Ray Allen’s record for most career three-pointers made is how quickly he accomplished the feat.
On Friday night, Curry made nine three-pointers in the Warriors’ 119-93 win over the visiting Chicago Bulls, surpassing Jesus Shuttlesworth as the league’s top all-time marksman. Curry recorded his record-breaking triple with 10:44 remaining in the game’s second quarter, and he finished the game with 3,366 drilled regular-season and playoff three-pointers in his career, surpassing Allen’s previous record of 3,358.
It took Curry all of 886 total games, compared to 1,471 for Allen — a whopping 66% fewer.
STEPH CURRY put on a show in front of his college coach 🔥— Ballislife.com (@Ballislife) November 13, 2021
40 PTS (15/25 FG) & 5 AST
36th game with 9+ 3PTS (Dame & Harden have 9 each)
Passes Ray Allen (3,358) for most career 3PTS in regular season + playoffs: 3,366pic.twitter.com/gTiUAuaThd
As LeBron James continues to run down Kareem Abdul-Jabbar’s all-time record for most career points, we can only look back at the production of some of the game’s former giants and marvel at their accomplishments.
The fact that Wilt Chamberlain was able to score 100 points in a single game, to this day, still seems outrageous. Kobe Bryant scored 81, of course, but that took 42 minutes, 46 shots, 20 free throws and astronomical usage. He still wasn’t really able to come that close to 100, which makes Wilt’s accomplishment all the more amazing.
For what it’s worth, Wilt — who didn’t have the benefit of any three-point shots — took 62 field goal attempts and made 28 free throws, so he wasn’t exactly a stranger to high-usage rates, either.
We look back at Michael Jordan and the fact that he was able to go 6-0 in the Finals and say, “Wow! Will anyone ever be able to do that again?”
MJ's six championships (and six Finals MVPs) were truly legendary, as was the fact that he was able to complete two separate three-peats. A three-peat is pretty difficult to accomplish, and when you consider that no team since Shaq and Kobe’s Lakers was able to win three straight, that says a lot.
Aside from Jordan’s Bulls, you’d have to go back to the 1960s to find a team that won three straight titles, though there was no shortage of teams that were able to win back-to-back. The third time — which was obviously elusive in this case — from a historical standpoint, is truly the charm.
So here’s some perspective: although we are firmly fixated on LeBron’s quest to become the league’s all-time scorer, we have to consider that he sits third on the all-time list, not second. His 35,516 points trail Karl Malone’s career total of 36,928 by a healthy margin of 1,412.
Although it seems to be a foregone conclusion that LeBron will pass Malone, every missed game increases the possibility that the accomplishment will have to wait until next season. If, however, he’s able to average 24 points per game moving forward, he’d need 59 games to surpass The Mailman. It’s certainly within the realm of possibility to happen this season, and almost certainly next.
Kareem on the other hand? That’s a whole different ballgame.
LeBron currently trails Kareem by 2,871 points. Assuming the same 24 point-per-game scoring clip, he’s 120 games away. There’s no guarantee he’ll get there, but if he’s able to stay relatively healthy — considering his high-level of play — you’ve got to like his chances.