ACC’s Top-25 Players: No. 21 – Seth Curry, Duke



I know what you’re going to say. Curry at No 21, way too low. Hear me out. You’re either in the “Curry will start at PG” camp or you’re in the “Irving will start at PG” camp. I’m in the latter. It’s not a knock on Curry and his abilities, it’s just that in my mind, Irving is special and there is little doubt he’ll be running the show.

This simply means, no matter how good I think Curry will be, there are only so many minutes available with Irving and Smith starting and with Dawkins and Thornton getting minutes off the pine…having said that, this kid is really, really good.

Last year, Seth Curry may have never seen a second of playing time, but he played an essential role in Duke’s championship. Fact is, the kid brought it every day in practice, often acting out the role of the opponent’s best playmaker. Teammates Jon Scheyer, Nolan Smith and Lance Thomas could not stop bragging about Curry. He made them work harder. He made them better. He helped make them into a championship-caliber team.

In 2010, Stephen Curry’s little brother is finally allowed back on the court. What can you expect?

Curry is a classic scorer. He’s quick with the ball in his hands and he has J.J. Redick three-point range. As a freshman at Liberty, he averaged 20.2 ppg. Not impressed by gaudy numbers at a small school? Don’t sweat it, Curry scored 26 at Virginia and 24 at Clemson. When was the last time a Duke freshman produced those kind of numbers in those places?

Word is (from some people), that Seth “could be better than his brother (Stephen Curry). If that doesn’t get you excited, you’re dead inside. In fact, his best lessons are probably taught playing one-on-one with his brother in the offseason.

Of course if you’re tired of reading about it, check out this video.

Having said all I can say about the kid’s scoring abilities, Curry is not going to win ACC player of the year. There is work to be done.

First, Curry loves to shoot the deep ball. In fact, in his freshman year, half of his 583 shots were three-point shots. Obviously any Duke fan loves a three, but to have success night in and night out at this level, he needs to be able to take it into the trees and finish.

Go back to that video. At about the 1:10 mark, watch Curry produce a couple of nasty, ankle-breaking crossovers. In both instances, his defender literally crashes to the ground. In both cases, Curry settles for long shots…one three, one very long two. Yes, they both went in, solid…but in the ACC, he needs to take some of those to the rim.

He’ll also need to show that he can play defense in this league. This year in particular will be a challenge. At 6’1, he’s a true point guard. Now he’ll see some decent minutes at the point, but he’ll also be the primary backup to Nolan Smith, plus he could see some time in a three-guard rotation if Singler takes a break or gets shifted to power forward.

This means Curry will have to defend against bigger, stronger players. Anyone who has watched a second of Duke basketball in their lifetime knows, if you want to play for Coach K, you better play D.

Having said that, Curry is going to be fun to watch. I suspect he’ll find a way to get on the floor for about 16-20 minutes per game, with a shot at finishing 4th in scoring for a team with a lot people capable of getting the ball in the basket.

In fact, despite not starting, I would not be shocked if you hear his name pop up in next year’s NBA draft, although I don’t see him going anywhere.