Stephen Curry: Decision To Skip Olympics ‘One Hundred Percent Injury-Based’
Anyone with eyes (and not wearing Cavs-colored glasses) could see that Stephen Curry was injured in the NBA Finals -- a Warriors' predicament that essentially handed Cleveland the NBA Championship. And injuries to Andrew Bogut and Andre Iguodala and Draymond Green's douchebaggery prevented Golden State from picking up the slack.
But Curry has never made that an excuse -- and in fact hasn't even acknowledged it until now. Speaking at the American Century Celebrity Golf Championship at Lake Tahoe, Nevada, on Thursday, Curry addressed the issue of passing on the Olympics. Has the past five weeks of no basketball helped him?
"I wasn't obviously too happy with the situation of having to pull out of the Olympic Games. Mine was 100 percent injury-based," Curry said to reporters, among them SportsGrid, on Thursday.
"When I got hurt in the playoffs and knew that the recovery time over the course of the summer was going to be important for me to get ready for next year, try to give Mr. Colangelo and Coach K and the whole USA staff more time to figure out what they needed to figure out for their roster."
That's U.S. team head coach Mike Krzyzewski and Jerry Colangelo, managing director of USA Men's Basketball.
"Obviously a lot of great guys that are going to go win the gold and represent our country well.
"I wish I would be able to play in the Olympics. I never played in it before, so I was looking forward to it," Curry said. "But with the situation as it is now, to be able to, like you said, rest and get ready for next season, do what I need to do to prepare my body, it is a nice built-in mental break as well to be able to play some golf and be out here and enjoy this experience.
"So I've played a good amount (of golf), not a lot since the season was over with; but, I mean, I'm excited about these next three days."
Curry is so removed from basketball that he hasn't even made an appearance at Kahle Community Center. That's a local Lake Tahoe rec gym where Curry had worked out the previous time he played in this tournament, in 2013. He would show up at 5:30 a.m. to shoot and work out before hitting the links around 8 a.m.
This year he's playing with his dad, Dell, in the ACC Tourney.
"It's special," Steph said. "We had a meeting last night, and I think they mentioned it was the first time they had a father-son duo in the tournament. So that's very special. I remember back when I was 10 and my dad was telling me: 'Hey, I'm going on a trip this week to play out in Lake Tahoe.' I didn't really know where Lake Tahoe was, going back, living back in North Carolina.
"So I remember back in '98, when he was preparing for his first time here, and to have him back as well as myself, it's a special time. So it will probably get really competitive between us two, which is how it always is. And we love that kind of back and forth on the course. So to do it in this kind of setting is very special."
One thing you may not have known: Curry is almost as passionate about golf as he is about basketball.
"I'm a golf junkie," he said. "I watch every tournament pretty much. I watch interviews. I watch warm-up routines. All that stuff. So here, like the pros say, you don't win it on the first day but you can lose it on the first day. Hopefully I can get off to a good start tomorrow. My wife hates it. I'll sit on the couch and watch six hours of a tournament."
And of course there's always the mouthpiece question. Will he wear one on the course?
"You never know. I might pull it out. If I make a double bogey, the fans on whatever hole better watch out; I might throw it. I might throw it at them."
Vegas has Curry at 6-1 to win the tournament (which begins today. Tuesday through Thursday were practice rounds).
"I don't know how they come up with the odds," Curry said. "I just got off the basketball court. I don't know. I'm pretty confident, let's just say that, in my game right now, for what it is. So if that means a win, then I'll be real happy."
Also, this exchange:
REPORTER: There's a YouTube video of Kevin Durant's golf swing.
CURRY: I need to see this.
REPORTER: Now that he's coming to the Bay Area, do you think you'd be able to help him out with that?
CURRY: I'd give him some pointers, yeah, if he wants to get into it. I think he'll need some custom clubs, for sure, with that height and wing span. But golf's for everybody, so it should be interesting to get him out there.
Photo by Tim Parsons, Tahoe Onstage.
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