For almost two years, Stephen Curry was Chef Curry, loved by all, adored by everyone. Now? He’s a choker, and the target of pretty hilarious memes, just because the almost perfect season went down in flames during the NBA finals.
A recent meme showing Curry’s head floating on a CGI ocean background from the Finding Dory movie is just another example of how quickly things change for superstar players the moment they lose one game. LeBron James, a three-time NBA champion and Finals MVP, a four time regular season MVP, and arguably the best Small Forward of all time and probably a top 10, maybe even a top 5 NBA player all-time, is mocked constantly for being a loser, choker, and many other wise nicknames. His most recent NBA championship ended a bit of that, but they’ll all be back the next time he loses.
In fairness to meme makers, Curry was branded as something of a disappearing act in last year’s finals as well. But the Warriors won, so people let it slide, forgot about it. This time? Up & down for Curry, who scored 48 points in the three games of the series, 93 in games 4-5-6, and 17 in game 7, missing big shots, and looking like he’s either tired, or a bit wavering from the grandiose situation. A 73-win team, defending champions, losing a 3-1 lead in the finals, the first to let it happen. He shot just 40.3% from the field, but the two numbers showing how difficult it was for him? He had only 3.7 assists per game while turning the ball over 4.3 times per game. Even on their bad nights, the Cavaliers were focused, and mostly successful, in stopping Curry.
Now, thanks to his wife who can’t stop battling on Twitter against trolls, and for simply being part of a group that became too arrogant and lost their cool at the wrong moment, Curry is labeled as a loser, choker, and someone who disappears in the biggest moments. While the memes are funny, most of the time, it’s weird how quickly things change. Curry won’t be let off the hook until the Warriors make the finals and he sets things right. Even more, if he isn’t the Warriors MVP on their next championship run, if it’ll ever happen, he’ll still be mentioned by many as someone who couldn’t lead a great team on his own.