Memo to Dell Curry: You created a three-point shooting monster.
Warriors guard Stephen Curry surpassed his father Dell’s career three-point total during Golden State’s 107–99 overtime win Saturday against the Nets in Oakland. Stephen’s third three-pointer gave him 1,246 for his career, one more than Dell, who enjoyed a 16-year NBA career that spanned from 1986–2002.
The milestone shot came from the left angle with a little more than three minutes remaining in the third quarter.
Stephen, 27, accomplished the feat in his 427th game, and he entered Saturday’s action with a career average of 2.9 three-pointers per game. Dell needed 1,083 games to compile his career total, leaving him with a career average of 1.1 per game. Stephen has moved into 42nd place on the NBA’s all-time three-point shooting list and he ranks 12th among active players.
The 2015 MVP has been on a tear this season as he looks to lead the league in three-pointers made for the fourth straight season. Last year, Stephen set an NBA record by hitting 286 three-pointers, breaking his own record of 272, set in the 2012–13 season.
The relationship between father and son nicely illustrates the rise of the three-point shot in the modern game. Known as a sharpshooter, Dell shot 40% or better from deep for eight straight seasons from 1991–92 to 1998–99. However, he never attempted more than 430 threes in a season. By comparison, Stephen has attempted at least 600 in each of the last three seasons and is on pace to exceed that threshold again this year.
For an excellent shooter like Stephen, more three-point attempts naturally leads to more three-point makes. Dell’s career-high for threes in a game was seven; Stephen has already hit that mark 24 times in his career.
The following chart shows how Dell and Stephen compare when it comes to high-volume three-point shooting nights.
Where will this end for Curry? Odds are, as the NBA’s all-time leading three-point shooter. Ray Allen currently holds the all-time record with 2,973 career three-pointers and Curry is the best positioned active player, age-wise, to make a serious run at that number. Here’s how Curry and Allen compare at similar ages. Note: Curry’s total is shown through the end of the 2014-15 season.
At his recent rate and with reasonably health, Curry is roughly seven seasons away from passing Allen.
While Dell, 51, never made an All-Star team during a career that saw him play for the Jazz, Cavaliers, Hornets, Bucks and Raptors, he was named the 1994 Sixth Man of the Year and his 47.6% three-point shooting led the league in 1998–99. In addition to Stephen, Dell and his wife Sonya have another son, Seth, who currently plays for the Kings.
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Golden State extended its franchise-best start to 11–0 as it looks to defend its 2015 title. Curry scored 21 of his 34 points after halftime. He is leading the league in scoring at 33.4 points per game.