Stephen Curry is stronger than you think. Way, way stronger. Golden State Warriors director of athletic performance Keke Lyles revealed that the MVP's exploits in the weight room are legendary, via ESPN's Tom Haberstroh:
"He's probably 10 times stronger than what people think," Lyles says.
Exhibit A: Curry can deadlift 400 pounds.
The exercise the Warriors prefer is the trapbar dead lift, which is basically a safer way to mimic lifting a giant boulder off the ground. One of the primary muscles that it works? Yup, the gluteus maximus.
"Steph's the second strongest on our team pulling that one," Lyles says with a straight face. "For his size, Steph is ridiculous strong."
Only center Festus Ezeli, who stands about seven feet and 270 pounds, can top Curry on that particular lift. That may be hard to believe, but that core power is the secret that unlocks Curry's magic.
"We knew he was strong," Lyles says, "but when he started pushing that kind of weight, I was like 'This guy is just a freak.'"
As Haberstroh explained in the feature, Curry's insane core strength has helped him stay on the court despite serious ankle issues plaguing him earlier in his career. It's a great example of his work ethic, as Lyles said there's a night-and-day difference in Curry since he joined the training staff two years ago and had him focus on strengthening his hips and glutes.
Curry doesn't look like an athletic freak at first glance, but neither did his stylistic predecessor, Steve Nash, who was one of the first players to get people talking about the importance of core strength. It's no coincidence that both of them possess almost unparalelled body control and the ability to make seemingly off-balance shots look easy.