Steph Curry might be the most important player in the NBA. With his ability to shoot, pass, and completely alter an opponents defensive scheme, Curry is on the verge of superstardom, and could very well lead his young Warriors team to an NBA championship this June. But Curry’s interests aren’t completely confined to the court.
Curry is the brand ambassador for a new fashion line from Express, which really marks the shooters first involvement in style, the obsession of so many NBA stars. Maxim spoke with Curry at the release event for the new clothing line, on the eve of last weekend’s All-Star game.
Two years ago, you had a breakout 54-point game at Madison Square Garden. Did you feel like that was kind of your coming out party?
I would say so because it was an ESPN game at MSG, and obviously everything is heightened there. I remember everything from that game, including that we lost. Up until that day, I had never been in that kind of zone.
Klay had a similar experience a few weeks ago, where he was just completely in the zone – what was going through your head as that happened?
I felt like I was back in AAU, just dribbling around in circles trying to get him the ball – it didn’t matter where he was. Guys were setting screens for him, I was just throwing him the ball and let him shoot. Sometime when he wasn’t even open he was sinking them, his legs were off-balance, he wasn’t even facing the rim sometimes. 37 points in one quarter, I mean, wow.
What do the Warriors need to improve on for the second half of the season?
We just got to be as consistent as possible. Obviously that’s everybody’s goal is to not have any downslides during the season, but at 42-9 we just feel that we need to be playing our best basketball come April. We feel like we’re the best team in the league if we play the way we’re supposed to play every night.
How did you become interested in fashion?
It was a slow process. In high school, I had a totally different style. Even in college, I wore baggy jean shorts, short-sleeves, baggy, collared shirts, mismatching colors, all sorts of stuff. I look back at all the pictures and it’s funny to look at. When I got to the league, I understood that you could create your own style that you’re comfortable with. It’s funny, because Express, they called me asking if I’d like to become a brand ambassador, and I kind of laughed on the phone, because I used to go to Express every fall and load up on gear to keep up with the NBA dress code. I liked the way it fit on me and it was comfortable. I told my wife that we spent a lot of money at Express and now we’ll get a good deal from them! Express is definitely a brand that I have a lot of history with.
How do you feel the NBA has influenced fashion, and vice-versa?
Obviously the dress code changed the dynamic of how you come into the arena. With the behind-the-scenes access that the media gets now, with cameras everywhere, you have an opportunity to dictate your own style. You can take chances if you want to or keep it simple. It’s whatever you want it to be. People pay attention to what we wear, and we have an opportunity to influence trends.
Which basketball player in all of NBA history’s style do you try to emulate or look up to?
It’s a tough question, because my dad was a suit and tie kind of guy. But if you look back at the suits they wore, it was a six-button, double-breasted, with long-cut jackets. Their style was totally different. I feel like the way Allen Iverson used to dress, with the backwards jerseys, it was something that totally inspired me. Now, it has changed again, the options are endless for how you want to dress.
How has Steve Kerr’s style of coaching differed from Coach Jackson’s?
Very similar. Coach Kerr has some tweaks, he’s all about ball movement, based on his good experience with the Spurs playing in Popovich’s system. But we have the same core, pretty much the same team as last year – the best thing he’s done is not come in and just blow everything up.
How important has it been that stability from last year to this year. You look at a team like the Hawks, with the same roster, the Spurs, same roster, and the amounts of success you’re all having. How important is continuity?
We’re familiar with each other to get through tough times during the season, especially when you need to grind out playoff wins. That’s a big reason we’re 42-9. We’ve been together for two years and have had some playoff success, won some tough battles. We’ve learned how to win every single night, even if we’re not playing our best.
Who’s the guy on the roster people aren’t praising enough?
I would say the entire bench. We have Shaun Livingston, Andre Iguodala, David Lee, Marreese Speights. That’s a line-up that could start for a lot of teams. They give us a huge push.
When you talk to your dad, what does he say is the biggest change in the game from when he played?
He talks about the athleticism of the average player. Obviously there were a lot of high-fliers when he played, but across the board, point guards, two guards, the athleticism and explosiveness of the guys in the league now is heightened. You have to be able to keep up. I don’t have it, so I try to be creative in my own way to be effective and to have fun.
Towards the end of the season, you might end up playing more minutes per game. This season, you’ve had the luxury of playing less minutes than last year. Is that going to help?
We expect the rotation to tighten up, and I might end up playing a lot more minutes. But really, we have such a deep team, I don’t know what to expect. I’m probably not going to play more than 40 minutes a night, because I don’t really need to. But if I have to, I will.
Can you win it all this year?
Photos by Express