Most everyone, ever, is taught to focus on the rim when aiming for a jump shot (obviously). Most are also taught to keep focusing on the rim while the ball is in flight. But not everyone. Some watch the rim, but as soon as the ball leaves their hands, they observe the arcing sphere. Dirk Nowitzki famously looks at the ball.
It’s a question that’s intrigued me. I recall during the 2012 NBA All-Star game, Andre Iguodala, mic’d up, asked Luol Deng if he looked at the ball or the rim. Deng said rim. Steve Kerr and Reggie Miller later discussed the topic on Inside The NBA. Both said they look at the ball in flight once it leaves their fingers. Internet searches—with mostly message board discussions providing the results—confirm memory of this Miller-Kerr conversation. (Miller even went so far as to claim that answers amongst NBA players would be dispersed 50/50—rim vs. ball in flight; a very Miller-like, outlandish claim.) Other good shooters said to look at the ball in flight: Steve Nash and Kevin Love.
I personally keep my eye on the rim. Some coaches will tell you that switching focus to flight can add unnecessary motion, as you would tend to raise your chin to follow the path of the ball. My shot was never consistent enough to be affected by such nuance (or, rather, there can be dozen of other inconsistent ticks in motion for the average shooter). I just figured that it’s best to provide the highest amount of concentration possible on the ultimate destination. Plus, that’s how I was taught.
[D.C. Council: setting the scene, rating the starters, assessing the subs, providing the analysis, and catching anything that you may have missed. Unlike the real DC Council, everything here is on the table. Game No. 48, Washington Wizards vs. New York Knicks; contributors: Rashad Mobley and John Converse Townsend from the Verizon Center, with Conor Dirks from the ATL.]
[D.C. Council: setting the scene, rating the starters, assessing the subs, providing the analysis, and catching anything that you may have missed. Unlike the real DC Council, everything here is on the table. Game No. 14, Washington Wizards at New York Knicks; contributors: Kyle Weidie, Rashad Mobley and Adam McGinnis from behind the T.V.]
Discuss amongst yourselves.
[via the Comcast SportsNet television feed, John Wall was giving Nene an earful, likely giving his overall assessment of the situation, toward the end of the blowout]
[D.C. Council: setting the scene, rating the starters, assessing the subs, providing the analysis, and catching anything that you may have missed. Unlike the real DC Council, everything here is on the table. Preseason Game No. 2, Washington Wizards vs. New York Knicks; contributors: Rashad Mobleyand Kyle Weidie.]
Washington Wizards 101 vs. New York Knicks 108 [box score]
Stat of the Game: The Knicks shot 18-for-33 (54.5%) from the 3-point line. Steve Novak led the way by going 7-for-7.
The Wizards and Knicks face off for the second time this season, the previous meeting coming in Washington, a 99-96 Knicks win (the Wizards have only one trip to New York on their schedule). Without much deliberation, let’s get into tonight’s 3-on-3, featuring John Kenney (@JohnBKenney) of KnickerBlogger.net, the TrueHoop Network’s Knicks blog, along with TAI’s Rashad Mobley (@Rashad20) and myself, Kyle Weidie (@Truth_About_It). Three questions, three answers starts now…
#1) When John Wall and Jeremy Lin (as a member of the Dallas Mavericks ) faced off in the 2010 NBA Summer League, Wall had trouble defending Lin (as did Lin with Wall). John went under a lot of screens and Jeremy made him pay. The Wizards won 88-82, thanks to 23 points from Cartier Martin, but Lin did score 11 fourth quarter points. Tonight will be the first meeting between the two since. Considering the environment (especially Lin’s recent boost into the limelight as the Knicks prepare to play Washington without Carmelo Anthony (groin), Amar’e Stoudemire (death in the family) and Baron Davis (presumably a beard-related injury or ailment otherwise)), how will this Wall-Lin matchup play out?
KENNEY: While many have focused on Lin’s offensive explosion, his defense has also been pleasantly surprising. Wall’s athleticism makes him a tough matchup to defend, but if Lin’s performances against Deron Williams and Devin Harris are any indication, he’ll do a fine job. (I also wouldn’t be surprised to see 6-foot-5 Iman Shumpert defend Wall at times.) And on offense, I expect Lin to score around 20 points, while delivering a number of nice assists to Tyson Chandler. The one concern should be that Lin must avoid foul trouble. If Lin is out for extended periods of the game, that means more Toney Douglas (currently in the worst slump of his career,) which helps explain why Lin played the entire 2nd, 3rd AND 4th quarters against the Jazz. Luckily, having Tyson defending the rim is a good safety net against Wall blow-bys.
MOBLEY: Based on the results of the last two Knicks victories, Lin will have to carry the offensive burden in order for his team to win–which is the equivalent of playing with house money. He’ll play loose and carefree. Coach Randy Wittman will tell Wall to run the offense and play within himself like he did against the Raptors. But Wall will struggle to balance that with his own competitive streak, and his numbers and overall game will suffer.