Steph identifies Team USA’s next-best shooter after himself

Steph identifies Team USA’s next-best shooter after himself

Steph Curry will play in Team USA Men’s Basketball’s exhibition game against Team Canada on Wednesday night in Las Vegas, but the next-best shooter on the roster, in his mind, won’t.

Kevin Durant, Curry’s former Warriors teammate from 2016 through 2019, will miss the game as he rehabs a calf injury.

Curry, while talking to reporters at Team USA’s training camp on Sunday, was asked who the best shooter on the roster was, besides himself, and he explained why it’s Durant.

“I’ve seen it up close and personal for those [three] years we played together,” Curry said. “But we got shooters all over the floor. That’s the beauty of USAB with this team. It’s pick-your-poison. And a lot of confidence with whoever is taking the open shot but I’ve seen KD up close and I know he’s a knock-down shooter from wherever.”

During Durant’s three years with Golden State, he shot 52.4 percent from the field and 38.4 percent from 3-point range.

Durant over his 16-year NBA career with the Warriors, Oklahoma City Thunder, Brooklyn Nets and Phoenix Suns, is a 50.1-percent shooter from the field and 38.7-percent shooter from 3-point range.

Curry and Durant arguably are the best two shooters on a loaded Team USA roster.

Among the 12 players, all NBA All-Stars, no one comes close to Curry’s 42.6 career 3-point percentage. Indiana Pacers guard Tyrese Haliburton, in a much smaller sample size, is the next best at 39.3 percent from deep.

The only players with a better career field goal percentage than Durant are Los Angeles Lakers star LeBron James (50.6) and the three centers on the roster — Bam Adebayo (54.7), Anthony Davis (52.3) and Joel Embiid (50.4). All four have much lower career 3-point percentages than Durant.

Curry, the NBA’s all-time regular-season leader in 3-pointers, knows what Durant is capable of. After all, the two-time NBA Finals MVP hit massive dagger-like 3-pointers in Game 3 of consecutive Finals against the Cleveland Cavaliers in 2017 and 2018.

Once Durant is healthy, Curry knows Team USA has one of the most lethal shooters at its disposal.

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