In 61 years of the NBA MVP Award, no one has ever received every first-place vote—not Michael Jordan, not Shaquille O’Neal, not LeBron James. Leave it to Steph Curry to break the trend.
The Golden State Warriors sharpshooter has been named the 2015-2016 NBA MVP, making him the third guard in NBA history to win the award two consecutive seasons, along with Magic Johnson and Steve Nash. Curry also becomes the first NBA player to win the award unanimously, commanding all 131 first-place votes. Curry joins Tom Brady and Wayne Gretzky as the only players in their respective major sports to win the award unanimously.
“I looked at the list of everybody who’s won an MVP award…legends,” said Curry. “To be the first unanimous MVP award winner is something I don’t even know how to put into words.”
Of course, during his speech, Steph was more focused on the team as they quest for back-to-back NBA Championships to go along with his back-to-back MVPs. He also took some time to reflect on the historic 73-win season his team just pulled off.
“It was a different journey, different expectations, different pressures,” said Curry, comparing this season to last year’s championship run. “It was a year of really just aiming to get better and to achieve what people might not have thought we deserved last year. I think for us, me especially, it was one of those things where no matter how great people tell you you are or how lucky or how inadequate critics say you are, whatever you find that will to keep going is about not being complacent.”
They certainly found that will to go on. 73 wins, numerous NBA records, and a 17-point overtime performance against the Portland Trail Blazers later, the Warriors are one win away from another Western Conference Finals trip, and another Larry O’Brien Trophy is plain in sight.
“I never really set out to change the game. I never thought that that would kind of happen in my career.”
Well, it did. Some would say for the better; some would say for the worse. But you definitely changed it.