They called a travel on Steph Curry. They should have called a travel on James Harden. That’s what happened. That’s the whole story. Oh and also that some brave referees keep trying to save the NBA from eating itself alive in service of highlights and stars.
Steph Curry got called for a travel late in Game 1 against the Kings first round playoff series and Curry kinda told the ref: hey what about #13 in Houston — that’s his move. But the refs weren’t having it. Curry said afterwards, referring to Harden, “I’ve seen [that move] once or twice so I tried it myself. But they knew it was somebody different [not Harden] so it is what it is.” Here’s the move, and the ridiculously upset Golden State announcers crying about the call.
Curry knows he traveled. He said as much (see video below): the move wasn’t “premeditated” — Curry trying something new a la Harden — it occurred because, as Curry says “I didn’t really create enough space so I tried a little quick one. I got caught.”
It’s hard for refs to call travels on superstars — see LeBron James crab dribble. And Harden is perhaps the worst offender. These players are so fast and slick with the ball that the refs have a difficult time. But they can’t give up, or the NBA devolves into chaos. A travel is a travel. You gotta call it or the game doesn’t work.
Curry knows, just listen to him. Below this video is Harden’s ridiculous double step-back move, which is a missed call, not a new paradigm. These referees are brave, but we won’t name them to keep them safe from the Warriors announcers!