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May 30, 2018

Stephen Curry

Oakland, California: Practice Day

Q. How does this team -- how do you keep your confidence from spilling into arrogance, especially when, from us in the media, it's almost like this narrative of certainty around you guys?
STEPHEN CURRY: Oh, I don't know. We try to come in every day understanding like none of this is guaranteed for us. There's a lot of talk and appreciation for how hard it is to win a championship and all that goes into it, throughout the journey, throughout the regular season, the playoff chase.

So for us, we've -- this year's been interesting with ups and downs and injuries. Even in the playoffs as of late, how we started games, coming out of the gate slow and fighting our way back in the second half, all that stuff is a part of continuing to grow and finding ways to motivate yourself, but stay appreciative of the moment.

Because I think you saw that on all our faces after Game 7 of the Houston series where this means a lot to us. There is an appreciation for the difficulty to get back to this stage, let alone try to win four more games and win a championship. So we're living in the moment.

Q. Does the lack of a Finals MVP, has that ever gnawed at you, even in the summertime, and how much of a story line do you expect that to be as the series goes on?
STEPHEN CURRY: It took to the second question of my first media availability, so I'm pretty sure that narrative's going to take life, as it has since 2015. But it doesn't make or break my career or whatever you want to say looking back. If we win this championship and I don't win Finals MVP, I'm going to be smiling just as wide and just as big.

But I'm going to play aggressively, confidently with that right energy and motivation to help my team win. And usually when I'm in that mindset, good things happen, whether that means it's a Finals MVP or not, who cares, but I'm going to be playing like it for sure.

Q. Is the story line sometimes more the people around you talking about it more than you yourself?
STEPHEN CURRY: Not even the people close to me. That's kind of the nature of the beast being on this stage four times in a row. You've always got to look at what you don't have. There is always that thing about society always looking at can you attain more and more and more.

That's fine. It's part of the beast. It's part of my motivation to try to get back to this stage because I want more championships. But I've never really highlighted the individual type -- even before my regular season MVPs, I've never even really attacked it as if that was the goal, per se.

Like I said, my values around how I play, good things usually happen for me and my team if I'm in that type of mindset.

Q. You obviously had that really interesting quote the other night about how the team could have splintered in that specific moment. Have there been other times throughout the playoffs or this season where you felt that?
STEPHEN CURRY: Not really, not in that heated of a moment. It was kind of do-or-die with our season on the line.

It was a special moment for us, and I think one that we'll look back, if we get the job done over these next two weeks, where, again, as an appreciation of all that goes into winning a championship and doing it by committee and making sure every guy, whether you're playing well or not, or things are going your way or not, that we all bring something to the fold that have gotten us to four straight Finals.

And we've done it by appreciating everybody that's a part of that group. I think that two and a half minutes was a special moment for us, and it should give us great momentum going into the series.

Q. Can you talk about what was said in terms of -- obviously, there was no finger pointing, but what exactly was said? Did somebody step up and say something that really made a difference for you guys in that moment?
STEPHEN CURRY: It was kind of everybody just getting the anxiety off their chest. I don't remember. I can't transcribe everybody's comments, but I think at the end of the day all I said was we got it off our chest, let's move on and win a basketball game and let's do it together.

Sounds very Disney Channel-type movies, but that's what we needed, to kind of turn the page and focus on the game and how we were going to win.

Q. How do you describe the spectacular third quarters and what it has taken for you guys to do that? Also, are you encouraged that maybe you guys haven't put together the perfect game yet, and you still have a chance to do some of that?
STEPHEN CURRY: I honestly have no idea what it is about our third quarters besides just sticking with the process, understanding that basketball's made of 48 minutes, and at any point it could break open for us. You don't want to dig yourselves holes in the first half, first quarter like we've done the last two games, but we've stuck with it and we haven't got defeated.

That's a good sign for us, that if we can -- and part of that, too, is Houston was a great team in that sense. Like not discrediting what they were able to do to impact the game early. It just took us a while to kind of get settled and get in. It wasn't always just us messing around.

But for us, to your point, if we can come out of the gate strong with the right intentions and execution and get off to a good start and sustain that effort as well over 48 minutes, then we could have one of those moments in time where everything's clicking, and hopefully that happens starting tomorrow.

Q. As you know, Kyrie's gone, and on top of that, the Cavs you guys saw at Christmas and then in January, half of those guys were traded too. So how do you look at this team now, you're seeing them for a fourth time? Is there anyone outside of LeBron that you fear?
STEPHEN CURRY: That we fear?

Q. Yeah, that you worry about.
STEPHEN CURRY: I mean, it's a weird kind of dynamic thinking about this is the fourth time in a row we've played Cleveland in The Finals. Obviously, LeBron's still there and he's the Mister everything for them. He's been playing amazing the whole regular season and especially in these playoffs to will his team back here.

We've been watching a little bit of film this morning, trying to figure out how the other guys have kind of fit in around him and where some of the tendencies are. You look at Game 7, how when they played Boston, the way that `Jeff Green played, the way George Hill kind of managed the game when he had the ball in his hands, his defensive presence as well. A rejuvenated Tristan Thompson. So we'll see if Kevin Love is healthy or not.

So there's guys all around there that can do things and make plays and are threats. But obviously, everything starts with LeBron and trying to put up as much resistance as you can. You know, when he's on the floor, he's a factor that you've got to worry about and try to take the other guys out too.

Q. To follow up on Joe's question, Saturday Night Live did a skit on how there's nobody on the Cavaliers except LeBron James, and they were kind of making fun of the other players' contributions. I know the other day you kind of weighed in on that. What is it about that story line and narrative that really rubs you the wrong way?
STEPHEN CURRY: I mean, we know how great LeBron is and what he's been able to do, statistically impacting the game, the stuff that maybe -- it's hard to say this, but stuff that doesn't show up in the stat sheet, even though most of the time it does, the stuff that he -- the confidence he gives the other guys, I guess, when he's out there on the floor.

But defensively, energy-wise, those other guys or however you want to call it, they're important to the piece. They're a new bunch that are still probably getting familiar with each other. Obviously they've been together since February, learning on the go. You can't -- for us, our goal is just to try not to give them any confidence as we go forward in the series, and try to use our experience and our chemistry to our advantage as we go forward, because they are talented guys. When they have the ball in their hands, they can make plays, and you got to be ready for everybody.

Q. Secondly, in this series, there are two guys, one on each team, that you hear a lot about when they talk about intellect and basketball IQ. LeBron is certainly one. You've faced him many times. Can you give some examples of things that he's done on the court that just blow your mind from that perspective? And on your team, the same about Draymond?
STEPHEN CURRY: Yeah, they're just basketball junkies that know the history of the game. We were joking where Draymond knows every draft class from like 1987 until now and all the different draft orders and whatnot.

When they're out there, they just make smart plays. I can't really document how they go, but they're always just saying the right things, making winning plays, changing the game when they're out there. So they use the mental aspect of it to give themselves an advantage and an edge. I'm glad we got Draymond on our side, obviously, and LeBron is who he is.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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