NEW YORK -- Hall of Famer Chris Mullin, now an analyst for ESPN, has been saying Stephen Curry is the best shooter in the NBA.

So Curry's 54-point performance Wednesday at Madison Square Garden was validation.

"When's he's open, I always feel like the ball is going in," Mullin said. "He's got that gift."

Mullin, a New York native, has his No. 17 jersey retired at Oracle Arena largely because he's one of the game's greatest shooters. He said he didn't see the game, but he was blown away by the sheer numbers.

Curry only needed 28 shots to get 54 points. He knocked down 11 of his 13 3-pointers.

Mullin, a New York, was more impressed by that than the fact it happened at basketball's mecca.

"Everything in New York will be a little bit bigger, so it adds to it," Mullin said. "But to me, if you look at those numbers, I don't care where he does that. If he did it in Timbuktu, it's unbelievable. An incredible shooting exhibition for any generation, any time, anywhere."

Mullin said he wasn't shocked that Curry pulled off such a feat. But he was "pleasantly" surprised.

He said just looking at Curry, a 6-foot-3 point guard, doesn't have the stature that suggests he can carry a team by himself. But that's exactly what Curry did, albeit it in a 109-105 loss, which Mullin said is a testament to Curry's skill, cleverness and conditioning.

Mullin, who's career-high is 47, said he remembers being in a zone in the playoffs against the Los Angeles Lakers. On May 8, 1991, Mullin was 16 of 21 shooting, making all four of his threes, and had 41 in a win on the road.

"That's why you put in extra time, to be ready for those moments," Mullin said. "Those nights don't happen a lot. Some guys don't get that opportunity. To me, that's what it's all about -- putting in the work so you can be ready. And he really took advantage."