Superior size, strength, speed, agility and coordination are some of the typical physical traits found in professional athletes.
But, inexplicably, the majority of the NBA community was unaware that superstar and consensus greatest shooter of all time Steph Curry was lacking in one crucial physical attribute: his eyesight. (RELATED: Steph Curry Turns 31 Years Old)
If you can believe it, Curry has been making 3s like the ones shown below his entire life while dealing with an eye disease called Keratoconus, in which the cornea — normally a circle — progressively thins and turns into a cone shape, according to The Athletic.
This distortion has given Curry astigmatism: an error formed by the way light bends when entering the eye due to the curvature of the eye lens, which leads to blurred or distorted vision.
To combat this issue, Curry has developed a habit of constantly squinting, which if you pay attention, you’ll notice he tends to do frequently while making seemingly impossible shot after impossible shot. Over the years, squinting helped enough that he felt he didn’t need to get his eyes checked, but at age 31, he’s perhaps put this off long enough and his degenerative eye disease is getting worse.
“I had gotten so used to squinting for so long,” he told The Athletic. “It was just normal.”
After the All-Star break, Curry entered a bit of a shooting slump, hitting just under 33% of his shots behind the arc in a 10-game span. Not too unusual during the course of an 82-game season, but since he’s shot 46.5% from the 3-point line in his first nine seasons combined after the All-Star Game, there might have been a slight cause for concern.
But literally overnight everything changed, and in his last seven games, he’s shooting just about 53% from the 3 on 12 attempts per game. Crazy numbers, even by Curry standards.
What sparked this change? Curry said it was a simple fix.
“I started wearing contacts,” he told The Athletic. “It’s like the whole world has opened up.”
Those are frightening words to opposing NBA teams hoping to finally knock off the defending champion Golden State Warriors. Curry was already having a great year, averaging 27.7-points-per game on 43.8% from deep, his highest percentage since his unanimous MVP season in 2016, but now it looks like he might be taking his game to a level no one thought possible.
When Curry is on his game the Warriors are truly unbeatable. He is the life-blood of their team and although most people think this year’s squad is the most talented in NBA history, they still only go as far as Curry takes them, as evident by the team’s 5–7 record without him this season, according to basketball-reference.
If these new contacts are as drastic a change for Curry as they seem to be, who knows what he’s truly capable of.