Stephen Curry is the 2022 Bill Russell NBA Finals MVP winner after leading the Golden State Warriors to their fourth championship in eight years. This is Curry’s first Finals MVP award, one in which he was a unanimous selection, and he earned it by averaging 31 points, five assists and six rebounds in the Finals against Boston’s No. 1 ranked defense. The Warriors clinched the title with their Game 6 road victory on Thursday, 103-90.
Curry has been among the NBA’s best players for a decade and has had the Warriors in the Finals in six of the past eight seasons, but despite his two regular season MVP awards, he’d never earned the top individual honor of the Finals. When he won his first championship in 2015, Andre Iguodala surprisingly one it after being inserted into the starting lineup for Game 4 and helping Golden State win the final three games of the series. The Warriors lost the 2016 Finals in a rematch against Cleveland, but had they won, Curry would have been the heavy favorite for the award. Then, Kevin Durant arrived and won Finals MVP in 2017 and 2018.
But Curry’s 2022 Finals performance was undeniable. In a series in which everybody struggled to score, Curry was Golden State’s constant. His 43-point explosion in Game 4 will go down as one of the greatest Finals games ever played, and even if it doesn’t show up in the box score, his gravity helps create almost every other shot that the Warriors make. His 33 points helped the Warriors secure the title Thursday night.
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Curry’s legacy was already secure. As a two-time MVP and three-time champion, Curry already would have gone down as one of the greatest players in NBA history. But his critics have long-held his lack of a Finals MVP trophy against him. His first championship came against a team missing its second and third-best players. His second and third were as a part of arguably the greatest team of all time.
But his fourth should silence the doubters once and for all. He’s not on a superteam this time. He’s not playing against an especially injured opponent, either. Curry faced the best team the Eastern Conference had to offer and beat them head on. In the process, he ended any questions about his place in basketball history.
Warriors NBA championship gear now available
The Golden State Warriors have won their fourth NBA title in the last eight seasons. Now, you can celebrate with championship hats, shirts, hoodies, and more. See the entire collection here.
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