I’ve noticed that when Jeff Teague drives to the basket, opposing bigs sometimes focus more on blocking out their man than aggressively helping to challenge Teague. I think some numbers explain why that might be.
Teague is tied for eighth among starting point guards in shot attempts per game at the rim (4.4) and is 14th in shooting percentage at the rim: 58.5, compared to an average of 60.5 for starting point guards. Teague ranks tied for 11th in the amount of shots he attempts per game from 3 to 9 feet (1.7) and is 12th in shooting percentage from that floater range: 35.4 percent, slightly above the league average of 35.1 for starting point guards. Teague’s free-throw rate of .25 is second-worst among his peers in the top 10 of shot attempts per game at the rim.
Here’s a comparison of the 20 point guards who attempt the most shots per game at the rim (stats don’t include Thursday’s games):
|Player||FGA/gm rim||FG% rim||FT rate|
I think if Teague becomes more of a threat to finish when he gets to the basket then he might start drawing more fouls. Theoretically, help defenders would be more aggressive in trying to stop him (and the refs might give him more benefit of the doubt), leading to more foul calls.
Since Teague can be such an emotional subject for some of my blog people, I feel like I have to add disclaimers to anything that can be perceived as even mild criticism of his game.
None of this means I believe Kirk Hinrich should take Teague’s minutes. Teague deserved his shot long ago and has used his opportunity to prove he’s a good scoring point guard. I just think these numbers show that, unless Teague somehow starts shooting from mid range like Steve Nash and Chris Paul, this is the best way he can become an even better scorer.
(By the way, peep my story on Zaza Pachulia that ran in today’s AJC.)
Michael Cunningham, Hawks beat