Former Davidson star Stephen Curry as an NBA head coach? The people who generally make those hires think he’d be a fine one, among current players.
In an annual preseason survey of NBA general managers on nba.com, Curry, the Golden State Warriors point guard, came in tied for third as the player who would make the best head coach someday. Curry and former Charlotte Bobcat Garrett Temple each received 7 percent support.
By far, the top choice among those 30 GMs was former Wake Forest star Chris Paul, now a Houston Rocket, at 39 percent. San Antonio Spur Manu Ginobili was the second choice, with 14 percent.
Curry has played for some terrific coaches in Golden State’s Steve Kerr and Davidson’s Bob McKillop. With Curry, a two-time MVP, making hundreds of millions between salary and endorsements, it’s hard to predict if he’d want to coach after his playing career ends. However, his vision for basketball angles – both as a passer and a surprisingly effective screener – are well established. He also grew up around the NBA, with his father, Dell, playing 16 NBA seasons.
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Curry showed up frequently in this survey, including:
▪ Best point guard (62 percent) over Russell Westbrook, Paul and John Wall.
▪ Best pure shooter (71 percent).
▪ Player you’d most want taking a shot with the game on the line (55 percent).
▪ Second to LeBron James (21 percent) as the player who most causes opposing coaches to adjust game plans.
▪ Fifth-most likely MVP for the 2017-18 season.
Other Charlotte or North Carolina connections who showed up in this survey:
▪ One GM picked the Hornets to finish third in the Eastern Conference. The consensus suggests the Hornets will finish behind Cleveland, Boston, Washington, Toronto and Milwaukee.
▪ The Hornets received some support for most improved team, though finished outside the top two of Minnesota and Philadelphia.
▪ Stephen Silas was among others receiving votes for top NBA assistant coach.
▪ Former N.C. State point guard Dennis Smith Jr. was picked the biggest steal in the 2017 draft (he went ninth overall to the Dallas Mavericks).
▪ Wake Forest’s John Collins (selected 21st overall by the Atlanta Hawks) was among rookies receiving votes for biggest draft steal.
Bonnell: 704-358-5129: @rick_bonnell