With his easy-going style, unbelievable skill set and distinctly human physical attributes, Steph Curry is fast becoming the new darling of the NBA.

“LeBron is the face of our league,” Los Angeles Clippers guard Chris Paul declared on Saturday following the West’s practice at Madison Square Garden in preparation for the 64th NBA All-Star Game. It was a fact cemented by the players union unanimously electing James as its vice president on Friday, such is the influence and power he still wields.

However, it’s becoming more and more obvious that baby-faced assassin Curry is on the rise, potentially threatening to steal the King’s thunder as the NBA’s fan favourite.

In fact, it could be argued that he already has. The Golden State sharp-shooter was All-Star’s top vote getter – edging James by 47,000 votes after putting in serious work during the first half of this NBA season. And most people MVP spoke to over the course of Al-Star Weekend said Curry was the player they were most excited to see in action – whether in the game itself or in the three point contest (which he won, with a spectacular 27 point tally).

“He’s just that guy,” Frank Montalignia told us as he made his way into Madison Square Garden. “He’s got the shot, the handles, he’s a friendly dude. He doesn’t seem that have the attitude that LeBron does. His record is ‘clean’, so to speak. What’s not to like?”

LeBron knows what’s going on: “For me, I just try to put myself in a position where I can lay down the foundation for the next group of guys, and if Steph Curry’s that guy, then this league will be where it needs to be, if not better.”

Curry has a lot of catching up to do before he’s even close to James’ accomplishments. But he’s bow found himself as the best player on the league’s best (and most exciting) team, and appeals to a swath of young ballers who can identify with a 6′ 2″, 84kg guard in a way they can’t with James’ freak-like frame and athleticism.

“Steph is so relatable to the fans,” says his coach at the Warriors, Steve Kerr. “The kids can look at him and say, well, I’m his size, practically.

“I think it would be easier to relate to Steph than it is to relate to LeBron or Michael or these super-human guys. So from that standpoint, it’s sort of different, a different place in the league, a different status or stature. No question with his popularity he is becoming one of the stars.”

League Commissioner Adam Silver’s message to everyone is ‘hold your horses’, saying:”LeBron’s not close to ready to move on yet”.

But, in the Warriors’ number 30, he sees a lot of potential.

“I can’t think of a greater representative of our league than Steph Curry. There’s a tremendous amount he does in his communities both in North Carolina where he’s from and Bay Area where he lives. It’s also a joy to watch him out on the floor.”

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