Curry shares how Paul is helping Kuminga in pickup games originally appeared on NBC Sports Bay Area
Ever since Chris Paul was traded to the Warriors, NBA fans have tried to envision how the veteran point guard will fit in with the offense.
It didn’t take long for Steph Curry, however, to see and understand exactly how his new teammate will contribute.
“It’s one of those things where you have a guy who just understands how to play basketball,” Curry said on a recent episode of the “Gil’s Arena” podcast. ” … There’s a lot of excitement for us, if we want to talk about strict Xs and Os, he connects a lot of lineups for us in terms of being able to help some of the young guys figure out what it means playing winning basketball and being in the right spots.
“Obviously a great leader in terms of his communication. He’s going to get on you, he’s going to overcommunicate — and we need that. I’ve already seen him playing pick up, him helping [Jonathan Kuminga], how to help him run the pick and roll, where to be at, giving him confidence in those type of scenarios. That’ll help us in terms of trying to be more cohesive. When I’m on the floor, when I’m off, me and Klay [Thompson] being able to run off the ball if CP’s running the point.”
Both Curry and Warriors veteran forward Draymond Green have named Kuminga as a Warriors player who could benefit most from playing with Paul.
Paul was traded to Golden State in exchange for rising young guard Jordan Poole, Patrick Baldwin Jr., Ryan Rollins and future draft picks. The Warriors haven’t revealed if Paul will be a starter or if he’ll be coming off the bench, but however coach Steve Kerr sprinkles in the different rotations and lineups, it’s clear how Paul can help set up Kuminga for more success on the floor.
The 20-year-old forward saw his minutes fluctuate over the course of the 2022-23 season, and he wasn’t happy about it. He wants to contribute more on the hardwood and showcase his true talent, and Paul can help with those efforts.
“We obviously have a lot of questions to answer in terms of who’s starting, who’s finishing and that’ll play itself out,” Curry said. “At the end of the day, we’re all motivated to win. I’m sure nobody more than him. And for us to know exactly where we feel we belong as a team. So there’s a lot going for us in that respect to try to put all our energy toward that.
“There’s going to be a lot of narrative and conversation around sacrifice and what that looks like when it comes to, there’s only five guys on the court at a time, but I think we can all figure that out. So that’s going to be our challenge at the end of the day.”
Curry added that Paul has “elevated” teams he’s been on throughout his entire 18-year career. His most recent team, the Phoenix Suns, didn’t reach their end goal last season, but his presence alone significantly lifted the team to championship aspirations.
Paul doesn’t play at the same pace that the Warriors are used to, but that might not be a terrible thing. His ability to manage the flow of games could be beneficial for the entire team, whether that’s finding and dishing out to Curry or Thompson for a trey or incorporating Kuminga and Moses Moody more.
“A guy who’s more than comfortable with the ball in his hands, it gives us a different change of pace,” Curry said. “The game slows down a little bit. And CP’s one of the greatest ever in terms of running that pick and roll, and dicing up defenses that way. And if you put spacing around him, too.
“I’m looking forward to seeing those two guys, Kuminga and Moody, take a step up in a sense of figuring out what it takes to play winning basketball. They have so much talent. I’m excited to see it all connect because it’s time to make that jump.”
Download and follow the Dubs Talk Podcast