In today’s NBA, if a team’s big can’t stretch the floor, that team will almost inherently struggle offensively. Last year, the Los Angeles Lakers’ front court was filled with bigs who couldn’t shoot and the offense suffered as a result.
So this offseason, Larry Nance Jr. and Ivica Zubac will both go where many father and son combinations have gone in drive ways and gyms across the world: They’re having three-point contests.
Nance had already started shooting threes over the second half of last season and did so at a fairly respectable 34.8 percent clip after the all-star break while attempting exactly one three per game over that span.
Those attempts will probably increase this year, and if he hits at that rate or better, Nance becomes a very interesting fit offensively and an incredibly valuable player moving forward.
Zubac’s sample size is too small to glean anything from last season, though he has stated basically anytime he’s asked that he’d like to start shooting threes and it doesn’t appear the Lakers will be holding him back.
Here’s how the competition will work.
This summer, Zubac + Nance Jr. will each shoot 100 3s after informal workouts at Laker facility and track on a whiteboard how many they make— Mike Bresnahan (@Mike_Bresnahan) May 18, 2017
We haven’t heard whether Julius Randle will be working on his three pointer, but if he does, it will probably be the grittiest shooting practice since, well, ever.