Jeremy Lin: Rockets Guard Must Improve Jump Shot to Be a Consistent Threat

Ryan RudnanskySenior Writer IFebruary 27, 2013

WASHINGTON, DC - FEBRUARY 23:  Jeremy Lin #7 of the Houston Rockets looks on from the floor during the second half against the Washington Wizards at Verizon Center on February 23, 2013 in Washington, DC. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)
Rob Carr/Getty Images

It's fitting that a player as polarizing as Jeremy Lin would have such an inconsistent jump shot.

On February 20, he posted 29 points on 12-of-22 shooting in a thrilling 122-119 victory over the Oklahoma City Thunder. Two games later, he scored five points on 2-of-9 shooting in a 105-103 loss to the Washington Wizards.

That's about as inconsistent as you can be. 

A lot was made about Lin's move from the New York Knicks to the Houston Rockets in the offseason. People wondered if he was a flash in the pan. He was sure to become a star or flop as the Rockets' starting point guard. There was no in-between.

The truth is, Lin has proved to be just that: an in-between player.

He is averaging 12.7 points, 6.2 assists, 3.4 rebounds and 1.9 steals this season with the Rockets. Respectable numbers.

On the other hand, he is shooting 43 percent from the field and 32 percent from downtown. That may be one of the reasons why his PER of 14.7 ranks third-to-last among point guards averaging at least 30 minutes per game, via Hoopdata.com.

As displayed by Hoopdata.com, Lin does relatively well finishing at the rim (62.7 percent), but his shooting percentage drops dramatically from three to nine feet (32.6 percent) and from 10 to 15 feet (33.3 percent). He's actually been a relatively decent shooter from 16 to 23 feet (38 percent).

So, one would assume that Lin needs to improve the most on shots from three to 15 feet, as well as from around the three-point line.

Lin has done a lot of things right this season for the Rockets. He's had to work alongside a player who commands the ball in James Harden while also being aggressive at times. That's certainly not easy. 

He has also rebounded well for a point guard while ranking fourth in defensive plays (steals plus blocks plus charges taken) among point guards averaging 30 minutes or more, via Hoopdata.com.

But for him to be a consistent threat, he has to work on his jump shot. Opponents are going to begin figuring out how to corral him to certain spots on the floor. If he continues to miss at those spots, it's not going to be pretty.

It's hard to pinpoint Lin's value at this stage in his career, but one thing is for sure: If he can develop a consistent jumper, there's no reason he can't have a long run in the NBA.

 

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