It’s my least favorite saying in basketball. Oh, is that all he can do—take the ball and put it through the basket, resulting in points? Surely your favorite team has no use for such a player, right? I don’t know that I’ve ever heard a coach say “We’ve got too many good shooters.”
What’s truly misconstrued is the value a good shooter brings, even on nights where he doesn’t shoot it well.
Chris Bosh was famously roasted for his 0-5 performance in Game 7 of the NBA Finals. But where do you think 37 year-old Tim Duncan was located on each and every Bosh
shot attempt touch? Was he clogging the driving lanes of LeBron and Wade? Was he in prime rebounding position on most Heat shots? Duncan played a whopping 43 minutes that night, partly because of Bosh’s perimeter presence.
It’s barely mentioned that in that same game, Mike Miller also went 0-5, and Ray Allen went 0-4.
But could those shooters’ presence have been part of why LeBron, Wade, and Chalmers assaulted the rim, combining to go 33-42 from two-point range?
Was Tiago Splitter’s inability to defend Chris Bosh on the perimeter and in ball screens the reason he spent 44 minutes on the bench and only 4 on the floor protecting the rim?
Maybe the Spurs would’ve won back-to-backs if all Splitter could do was shoot.