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Twenty minutes after the curtain came down on the latest instalment of his 82-show run, Steph Curry left the Air Canada Centre court. Ten minutes after that, he'd made it the hundred or so feet up the hallway to the visitors' dressing room.

He moved in small increments. Every once in a while, the best basketball player in the world would stop and acknowledge someone. Most pretended surprise: "Who? Me? Who just happens to be standing directly in your way, turning just as you pass? I had no idea you would be here."

The subject of Curry's attention would get a woozy look. Most couldn't resist patting him lightly on the shoulder or the chest. A little touch to make sure it was all really happening.

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Curry would smile and nod and move on just as quickly as politeness allowed. When he reached the door to the Warriors' room, a keening rose from the crowd of 1-per-centers on the other side of a rope down the hall. Two dozen phones were raised overhead to take photos – presumably of the phones just in front of them.

This is what real stardom looks like. If the NBA is the universe, for the moment, at least, Steph Curry is its sun.

It wouldn't be true to say that he beat the Toronto Raptors single-handed on Saturday night, but it's fun to pretend he did.

He scored 44 as though doing that sort of thing is easy. He made shots no one else in basketball would even attempt, for fear of looking stupid. He made the free throws that secured it down the stretch, and had the game-winning steal.

So by Curry standards, just another shift down at the mill.

The Golden State Warriors do many things better than everyone else. Just having Curry on the roster is their most forward-thinking strategy.

"Would you ever let [Curry] get his?" someone asked of Raptors coach Dwane Casey beforehand, suggesting that it might just be best to let him run wild, and try instead to stop the rest of Golden State.

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Casey actually thought about it for a second: "It's a lot."

Yes, it's a lot. It's a ridiculous amount. All of it.

They're talking about Curry winning both the league MVP (again) and the most improved player award.

That doesn't make any sense (because what would it say about the talent level of the rest of the league in relative terms). But it gives you an idea of how gobsmacked people are by Curry's current level.

Riding a 21-0 start, averaging 32 points a game, sinking nearly twice as many three-pointers as the second-best guy. Curry is not just having a season for the ages. He is proving that there is still room in the NBA for old-school razzmatazz, rather than what passes for it these days – thunder and awe.

Unlike so many of his peers, Curry has that gift of seeming humble while plainly enjoying the attention. What's needed to reconcile the distance between the two is personal warmth. Curry has that in abundance.

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That's part of the secret. But the real key to Curry hysteria – and that's what it feels like up close right now – is that in a land of giants, he is human sized.

You look at someone like Anthony Davis or LeBron James and you think to yourself, 'If I was built like that, I'd be in the NBA, too.' You're wrong. The world is full of supersized people who work in sales instead of the Bigs, but you'd be forgiven for thinking it.

Curry is different. He isn't small (6-foot-3), but he's slight. He is spindly and just a bit knock-kneed. He gives the impression of someone who isn't doing what he does through some unfair surplus of genetic advantage. Being Steph Curry looks and feels like hard work.

We're already collecting the evidence of miracles for eventual canonization – how no top college would recruit him; how his father Dell's alma mater, Virginia Tech, asked him to redshirt; how he slipped to seventh pick in the 2009 draft, just after Jonny Flynn.

Flynn scored 1,500 points over his abortive, three-year career. Curry had 1,900 last season.

He played three seasons at Davidson because he wasn't a good enough ball handler to enter the NBA early. Six years later, he's got the best handle in the game.

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He's out there proving it to you in the warm-ups, doing a circus series of dribbling drills – two balls, two hands, basket-weaving between his legs. You can watch it over and over again and it still doesn't make any sense.

He's making practice shots just short of half-court. His stroke is mechanically perfect and unchanging. In baseball parlance, Curry paints with his jump shot.

In the intros, he gets the loudest cheer in the building. A few years ago, this would have been an example of Raptors' fans bad habit of front-running. But now that their team has built up some credibility, it sounds like genuine admiration.

Curry is quiet in the first quarter – 16 points, including four consecutive three-pointers over, by and through out-stretched hands. It's like watching someone do a cryptic crossword while riding a motorbike.

The Raptors keep it close. Kyle Lowry has one of his hate-fuelled, 'Why isn't anybody talking about me?' nights. But Lowry has to scramble for his career-high 41. For Curry, it's choreography.

In the fourth, while everyone else is tightening, he's loosening. While everyone else is missing, he's making. And while everyone else is trying very consciously to win the game, Steph Curry is just playing it. That's the difference.

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Later, Warrior Draymond Green will say the 112-109 victory is "the closest" Golden State has come to losing this year.

Curry doesn't say that, or anything like it. He's busy folding up the tent, getting ready to put it on trucks and head to the next town.

Having known what it's like to be ignored, Curry is too canny to let doubt – even the polite suggestion of it – interfere with his ongoing command performance.

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