Five Stars is a series where I use the GameScore formula to show which players had the most positive impact of the outcome of a game. I track every Heat game. On nights when the Heat don't play, I'll track whoever appeared on the court in last night's matchup. After six games last night, these were the Five Stars.
Stephen Curry, Golden State Warriors - 52.0
Curry was unstoppable in Golden State's 134-120 win over the New Orleans Pelicans. He played 35:38 as the Warriors starting point guard, hitting 17-of-27 from the field and eight-of-14 from outside. 11 free throws without a miss brought his point total to an NBA season-high 53 points. He added nine assists, four rebounds and four steals.
I've always had confidence. You just get better as a player and try to take it to another level. So that's what I'm trying to do this year. I'm blessed to be healthy. I'm feeling pretty energetic, pretty strong out there on the floor, playing free, just having fun, so usually good things happen when all that comes together. - Curry
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Eric Bledsoe, Phoenix Suns - 33.2
Bledsoe, Phoenix' starter at point guard, played a game-high 38:23 and scored 33 points, filling up the box score with six assists, four steals, three rebounds, and two blocks. He made 12-of-21 shots, including two-of-six from downtown and seven-of-nine from the foul line. The Suns earned the win, 101-90 over the Portland Trail Blazers, their second win over the team in two days.
It's tough to beat any team twice - Bledsoe
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Blake Griffin, Los Angeles Clippers - 31.3
Griffin's 37 points would have led the NBA on most other nights. He hit 13-of-22 two-point shots and 11-of-15 from the charity stripe, adding nine rebounds, six assists, and two steals in 36:14. The Clippers earned the victory over the Sacramento Kings, 114-109.
To get off to a good start and beat a good team like that is important for us. If we would have won one more game last year, it would have put us in second place in the conference and we would have had homecourt advantage through the first two rounds of the playoffs. You think about those things.
The inventively named Clips Nation has more on Los Angeles' better team.
Carmelo Anthony, New York Knicks - 31.2
Anthony led the Knicks to a 117-110 win, handing the Washington Wizards their first loss of the season in the bargain. New York's starting small forward played a team-high 35:45 and shot 11-for-18 from the field and four-of-five from beyond the arc. He added 11 points in 12 free throw attempts, along with seven boards, four dimes and a blocked shot.
It was just one of them days that - even this morning at shootaround things were just feeling good. I worked out a little bit after shootaround, things felt good; before the game, things felt good. So it was just one of those days. - Anthony
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Brandon Knight, Suns - 24.0
Knight earned the fifth star across the entire league, but was only the second best player on the team, after Eric Bledsoe. Knight, Bledsoe's backcourt partner at shooting guard, played 34:29 and put up 27 points on 10-for-19 shooting. He made four-of-nine from outside, three-of-four from the one-point line, and pitched in five rebounds, five assists, two steals and one blocked shot.
When you have two guys who can penetrate and shoot and make the right play, it is going to work fine. It's about all of us, really, meshing and jelling and finding the right way to play together. - Knight, speaking of his chemistry with Bledsoe.