The evolution of Seth Curry’s offensive game and what it means for the 76ers.
76ers President of Basketball Operations Daryl Morey has made a lot of great moves since taking the helm for the Sixers front office after the 2019-20 season. Dealing the Al Horford contract, drafting Tyrese Maxey, but none of those compare to his acquisition of Seth Curry for Josh Richardson.
At the time, getting Seth Curry was an upgrade thanks to his three point ability that was well known in the league, but no one expected Curry to take such huge steps offensively and it is helping the 76ers immensely this season.
Seth Curry, for a majority of his career including his first full regular season with the 76ers, was known for his shooting ability. After all he is a Curry, a family name that has become synonymous with being able to hit shots from behind the arc mostly thanks to Seth’s older brother Steph.
Seth certainly knew how to shoot the three consistently even before he showed up in Philly, boasting a 45-percent three point percentage in the two seasons prior to his initial season with the 76ers. In fact, many Sixers fans cited his higher three point percentage compared to his brother when the trade had gone through.
In his first regular season, Seth Curry only continued his offensive shooting prowess from behind the arc that he had with the Mavericks and Blazers. He boasted a 45-percent shooting percentage from three, shooting around five per game. At the time, Curry shot more from outside the arc than from two-point range at just over nine total shots a game on average.
Curry was able to continue being successful from deep in a system with Ben Simmons and Joel Embiid demanding so much attention on the offensive end, freeing up looks from downtown.
Seth Curry had perfectly fit the role expected of him, a knockdown three-point shooter the 76ers stars could go to when doubled or off of rotations in the half court. Seth wasn’t confident enough nor displayed any signs of being able to hit tough, late game shots nor had he been able to create his own shot with the ball in his hands like other Sixers players. Most of that comes down to the fact he’d never been asked to do such a role on any team, but come playoff time for the 76ers Seth Curry stepped up.
In the 76ers post-season full of drama and injuries, Seth Curry not only flourished but seemed to have evolved his game. Curry would go on to average nearly 19 points across the entire post-season, a career high that would top his previous post and regular season statistics.
Curry did shoot the ball at an insane 50-percent clip from beyond, but had also found the confidence to shoot on any level of the court. His shot attempts per game shot up to nearly 13, and his isolation scoring rose steadily. Curry had seemed to have turned a corner, and 76ers fans like myself were excited and hopeful he could carry that into next year.
Through ten games this season, Seth Curry has done exactly that. Curry currently sits with career highs in shots attempted per game, three pointers per game, free throws per game, and currently points per game. Curry is shooting an outrageous 58-percent from the field, numbers you only see with centers that don’t shoot the ball outside one foot away from the basket.
His 48-percent three point percentage is a current career high. With Ben Simmons not being available and starters like Joel Embiid, Tobias Harris, and Danny Green missing games Seth Curry has stepped into a pure scoring role, and boy is it needed.
To put into perspective how good Seth has been through the first eighth of the season, let me throw out an insane statistic. In the entire 2020-21 season, Seth Curry finished with eleven total 20+ point games. Through ten games, Curry already has five. If he continues on this path, he’d finish with around 40 games with 20 or more points.
This is a 76ers team that has a lot of players stepping into big roles and taking huge progression leaps that has gotten the squad to an 8-3 start. None of them have been as vital in my mind as Seth Curry’s offensive evolution, and will serve as a catalyst for the team for the rest of the year.
Seth Curry missed the game last night against the Milwaukee Bucks on the second night of a back-to-back with the Sixers. The team will be back in action Thursday night at home against the Toronto Raptors.
Mandatory Credit: Tim Nwachukwu.