SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) -- Golden State Warriors star Steph Curry wasted little time at Madison Square Garden Tuesday night, setting the all-time NBA career record for 3-point field goals less than five minutes into the game against the New York Knicks.
After going 5-for-15 from distance in a win over the Indiana Pacers Monday, Curry was just one three away from tying Ray Allen's NBA career record of 2,973 coming into Tuesday evening.
That three pointer came under a minute into the game.
Curry hit the record-breaking shot from the right wing with 7:33 remaining, waving his arms toward the sky as he jogged backward down court. The Warriors then committed a foul and quickly called timeout to let the celebration begin. He ran with the ball and handed it off to his father Dell Curry for safe keeping.
There was an electric atmosphere at the Garden Tuesday night, with numerous celebrities at courtside to witness the moment including diehard Knicks fan Spike Lee, actors/comedians Tracy Morgan, Chris Rock and Pete Davidson, soul singer Alicia Keyes and former NFL star and television personality Michael Strahan.
"The buildup to getting this number, it was a special atmosphere," Curry said. "I knew the Garden would deliver just in terms of how iconic this place is -- I can't say it enough, I appreciate so much the way the fans embraced the moment with me and let me kind of get lost in it. I could feel it. Once I took the shot on the wing, it just felt good, looked good -- it felt like we were at home."
Curry afterward embraced Allen, who was present along with fellow shooting legend Reggie Miller, and exchanged high fives with his teammates in celebration.
"It was a special moment, for sure, that I appreciate and I'll remember for the rest of my life, in terms of what it means to me to pass Ray," Curry added. "Him and Reggie [Miller], guys I've looked up to coming into the game. Definitely special."
Heading into the Garden, Curry said the last week has been surreal.
"I'm enjoying the moment and now you're knocking on the doorstep, it's pretty surreal," he said after the Pacers game. "But just trying to let it happen. It's one thing I've learned these last three games, is keep playing basketball, keep taking shots you think you'll make and enjoy the experience of it because it's a long time coming."
Over the last three games, Golden State's offense has been out of kilter despite having won two of those contests and running their record to 22-5. Fellow Warriors star Draymond Green says he thinks subconsciously the team is trying too hard to set Curry up for the record and will be relieved when the quest is over.
"The relief part, I get what he says, just in terms of the build up and not really knowing what game it is going to be," Curry said with a chuckle. "It's been awesome, the home crowd for the Portland game was amazing even though it didn't happen. Philly was awesome, every three, it was crazy here like that."
Curry nearly tied the record Tuesday night. With the game knotted at 100-100 and the clock winding down, Green set a screen for Curry, who launched a 3-pointer to win the game. It careened off the rim into the hands of Kevon Looney who dropped it in for the victory.
A loud, collective gasp could be heard from the Pacers home crowd as the ball was in the air.
"The shot looked good," Curry said. "I fell to the floor and the next thing I know I see Loom come out of scrum with the ball and put it back up."
Curry knows he's a marked man and the record won't come easy.
"I know teams are coming out trying to make sure it doesn't happen on them," he said. "Again, I'm just enjoying the moment. You won't get this ever again in terms of the chase to get over the mountain top. After that it will just be about how far can you push it."
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