During a Twitter Q&A late Tuesday night into early Wednesday morning, Portland Trail Blazers guard C.J. McCollum was asked a wide variety of questions, ranging from whether he looked like Steve Urkel to his relationship with LeBron James.
One fan found it appropriate to ask McCollum is Stephen Curry could guard him, and his response got more engagement than any other: more than 1,400 retweets and almost 1,300 favorites.
“Nope” was his response.
— CJ McCollum (@CJMcCollum) August 31, 2016
The two teams faced off in the Western Conference Semifinals, where Portland lost 4-1. McCollum averaged 21.4 points on 42% shooting while Curry averaged 34.5 but only played in two games–in Game Four, Curry’s first game back from injury, he went for 40 with 17 coming in overtime.
Of course, we can’t talk about this topic without throwing in the clip of McCollum breaking the ankles of the two-time MVP:
McCollum is right in the sense that Curry can’t guard him, but few guards in the league can. To start, Curry is an average defender at best, and won’t be in the running for Defensive Player of the Year anytime soon. He has quick hands and can rack up steals in a hurry, but regarding individual defense, Curry’s underwhelming athleticism and strength lead to him getting bullied by bigger, more athletic guards. Russell Westbrook and Damian Lillard, two of the West’s most athletic guards, both stand at 6’3 and weight 200 and 195, respectively, giving them at least ten pounds on Curry who tips the scale at 185.
That’s why Golden State switches Klay Thompson onto the most dominant guard which keeps Curry from getting exposed.
At roughly 6’4, 200-pounds, McCollum is tough for small guards to handle and usually draws a bigger defender. He’s not a dominant all-around scorer just yet, but his shooting is lights out from three and knockdown from mid-range, which are two of the most challenging places to score from. McCollum has point guard skills and a tight handle, so he uses that keep defenders off balance and is deadly out of the pick-and-roll with his ability to change direction and speed.
Stats courtesy of Basketball-Reference
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