NBA analysts rip Stephen A. Smith for recent LeBron James-Stephen Curry take

Peter Dewey
3 Min Read

ESPN analyst Stephen A. Smith claimed on Wednesday that Stephen Curry could take LeBron James’ spot on the NBA’s Mount Rushmore if he beats him in the Western Conference semifinals and goes on to win his fifth championship.

Smith’s take is not a popular one, as many NBA pundits and fans have James among the two greatest players in the history of the league.

The 55-year-old’s colleagues, Brian Windhorst and Jay Williams, refuted his take on Curry overtaking the Los Angeles Lakers star amongst the NBA’s best players of all time.

“Mr. Smith, please come home,” Windhorst said. “You’ve been in California for too long. Too much sun, too much blue skies, too much 75 degrees, come back to the cold gray of the Northeast, the gritty streets. You’ve lost it a little bit. This is grade A insanity.”

It’s hard to argue with Windhorst’s frustration, as James not only is the NBA’s all-time leading scorer, but he has four NBA Finals MVPs to his name as well.

Curry has just one NBA Finals MVP, and as Fox Sports analyst Skip Bayless pointed out this week, James has statistically dominated Curry in their matchups against each other in the NBA Finals.

“I’ve been waiting to say this line to you for so long,” Williams said to Smith. “Stay off the weed, Stephen A. You know how I know you? You know how I know you give clickbait? You get people talking. You didn’t even make the claim that he is going to be in the top five — top four in the Mount Rushmore. You just said, ‘The discussion.’”

It looks like Smith is outnumbered — and for good reason.

The bright side for James and the Lakers is that they can put to rest any of this talk about Curry passing the Lakers star by just beating the Golden State Warriors in the Western Conference semifinals.

The Lakers already took the first step toward doing that in Game 1 on Tuesday night, riding a 30-point, 23-rebound performance from Anthony Davis to a road win.

Now, the Lakers have home-court advantage in the series and could take a 2-0 series lead if they beat the Warriors on Thursday night at Chase Center.

James and Curry will forever be intertwined in their legacies because they met in the NBA Finals in four straight seasons, but James’ resume is arguably the greatest of all time.

Even if Curry does beat him this year, James is still ahead of him in the minds of Williams and Windhorst.

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Peter is a graduate of Quinnipiac University where he covered the MAAC and college basketball for three years. He has worked for NBC Sports, the Connecticut Sun and the Meriden Record-Journal covering basketball and other major sports. Follow him on Twitter @peterdewey2.