The NBA announced the participants for the 2017 Three-Point Contest on Thursday, and a certain someone was conspicuously absent from the final list of eight:
2017 NBA 3-Point Contest Field: Kyrie Irving, CJ McCollum, Kemba Walker, Wesley Matthews, Nick Young, Eric Gordon, Klay Thompson, Kyle Lowry
— Ben Golliver (@BenGolliver) February 3, 2017
No Stephen Curry? Say what?
The Golden State Warriors’ point guard, who will be partaking in the Feb. 19 superstar showcase as a starter, offered an explanation for his decision to decline the league’s invite, per the Bay Area News Group’s Anthony Slater:
Steph Curry explains his decision not to compete in the 3-point contest at All-Star weekend pic.twitter.com/TS3kVwH4Od
— Anthony Slater (@anthonyVslater) February 3, 2017
“Honestly, this All-Star weekend is kind of the slowest, schedule-wise, I’ve had,” he said. “And I want to capitalize on that rest.”
Fair enough, and Curry does go on to note that stepping away from the three-point shootout was not an easy decision. But he’s also working off two straight NBA Finals runs, both of which included a trip to the All-Star exhibition in the middle, with another one likely on the horizon this year. If he has a chance to rest up, for however long, before Golden State’s stretch run, he might as well do it.
Plus, while Curry’s already partaken in the shootout a half-dozen times, his preference to step away this year doesn’t mean he’s done forever. He’s still in his prime, still an unguardable flamethrower, and still going to shoot 40-plus percent on a crap ton of threes next season. The NBA will no doubt extend him another invite in 2018, and perhaps, at that time, he’ll accept it.