Warriors star Stephen Curry was already a basketball legend and surefire Hall of Famer prior to Thursday night, but capturing his fourth NBA title -- and first Finals MVP -- all but sealed it.
Arguably all that remains regarding Curry's legacy is trying to figure out exactly where he fits among the best ever to play the game.
And according to at least one fellow hoops icon, Hall of Famer and TNT analyst Shaquille O'Neal, Curry might not quite be in the same tier as Michael Jordan or LeBron James, but rather he owns a special superlative all by himself.
“[Curry] is definitely an all-time great," O'Neal told Morning Show hosts John Fricke and Hugh Douglas on 92.9 The Game on Friday, "but he has his own category. For example when you mention the GOAT, there’s always three names that come up: LeBron, Kobe, and Jordan. When you mention the most dominant, two names come up: Myself and Wilt. When you mention the greatest shooter, he’s in that category by himself.”
There's little doubting Curry's shooting chops. The two-time NBA MVP passed Ray Allen for most career 3-pointers in January 2021, and his career free-throw percentage of 90.82% was best in league history at the end of the 2021-22 season.
For Shaq, that's enough to place Curry above sharpshooters of yesteryear such as Allen and Reggie Miller.
And while The Diesel stopped short of revealing exactly where he'd rank Curry among the game's all-time greats, he said the 34-year-old is "definitely" in the discussion.
"Steph Curry is the greatest shooter of all-time," O'Neal said. "So, he's definitely a top player. I don't get into the, ' Oh he's number 3, 4 or 5. It's different eras of greatness in basketball, so it would be unfair to move another guy, but he's definitely in the building, he's definitely at the table."
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