Mike D’Antoni wants to double Chris Paul’s 3-point attempts
Houston Rockets head coach Mike D’Antoni plans to make new addition Chris Paul into a three-point shooting extraordinaire this season.
Playing within the team’s philosophy, the dime maestro will see his number of trey attempts kick up drastically with this offense, which led the league in three-point attempts in 2016-17.
Paul shot 114-of-260 from deep on catch-and-shoot threes last season, a blistering 43.8 percent, picking his spots throughout the season to make his career-best from beyond the arc.
His best asset is being able to manage the game to his pace, being able to get to his spots within the flow of the offense and find his openings within their rotations with ease.
Paul is perhaps one of the most gifted mid-range shooters, doing so masterfully off the dribble and off the catch, a rare aspect which D’Antoni is hoping to make the most of while ramping up his three-point attempts.
“[Paul’s] one of the few, and I’ll make an exception for that,” D’Antoni said of his point guard’s mid-range prowess, according to Bleacher Report’s Kelly Scaletta. “But again, I think he averaged about three threes last year, and we’ll try and get that to six this year.”
While D’Antoni looks to tap into CP3’s acumen from deep, it could also ironically revert its effectiveness in the search for an effective field goal percentage north of 50 percent.
Paul’s backcourt mate James Harden has seen his three-point prowess take a dip through the years. The 28-year-old bearded assassin shot a career-high 39 percent in his last season with Oklahoma City and shot more threes every season after joining the Rockets in 2012, attempting 6.2, 6.6, 6.9, 8.0, and most-recently a whopping 9.3 attempts per game last season under D’Antoni.
Harden’s three-point accuracy has not reached its previous high since becoming the frontman of the Rockets — and while every year he’s making more threes per game, he’s taking a ridiculous amount of additional threes, resulting in shooting a career-worst 34.7 percent last season.
While D’Antoni is looking to bump up Paul’s attempts, he’ll have to be wary of taking perhaps one of his most unique and special assets away from his game, one that also allows him to shred through the defense and find open shooters — a much-harder task to achieve when standing from beyond the three-point line.
Once a reluctant three-point shooter early in his career, Paul has managed to turn into a 37 percent career shooter from distance, including reaching the 40 percent mark three times during his 12-year career.
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