Yesterday we looked at where the Memphis Grizzlies starters were effective. Now we're going to look into the reserve players to see where their hot and cold spots were on the court. Let's get straight to it
Jerryd Bayless was an interesting case last season. Besides Mike Conley, Jerryd was the only player capable of creating his own shot on the perimeter. That led to a lot of mid-range attempts which happened to account for 37.8 percent of his offense last season. It was a sound go-to move as he shot 38 percent from 16-23 feet which happens to be the league average from that distance.
The underrated part of Bayless' season and where he helped Memphis most was his three-point shooting which came unexpected. As a spot-up three-point shooter, Bayless shot 38.7 percent. His biggest weakness was his isolation play where he shot 31 percent.
Corner 3s, corner 3 and corner 3s. Quincy Pondexter isn't just a corner three-point shooter though. By my standards he's an elite corner three shooter. Here's Pondexter's corner-3 percentage compared to notable shooters around the league.
|Corner 3 %|
When given the time (as we saw in the playoffs) Quincy is really a luxury to this team. Unlike Tayshaun Prince, he forces teams to choose between doubling down on the bigs by helping one pass away or playing honest defense. It's quite surprising to see that Quincy is that good from elsewhere. He's got a long way to go on offense and improving his shooting so he doesn't get regarded as a one-dimensional player in this league. After his breakout season teams will being to run him off the three line and make him go against the percentages.
While Quincy Pondexter is the primary corner-3 shooter, Mike Miller excels around the board. He's been a top-20 three-point shooter in the last four years playing alongside Lebron James and Dwyane Wade. While no one on this team is that level of player the spacing will remain the same as teams have to collapse on Marc Gasol and Zach Randolph. The numbers that matters most is his 40.9 percent on spot-up 3s and 43.2 percents on transition 3s.
As an avid Miami Heat watcher seeing Miller's shot selection inside the three-point line is encouraging. Forcing the issue isn't a thing for the veteran unless the shot clock enforces that action. He'll fit in perfectly alongside the Grizz key players as the designated shooter, a role he's been playing specifically in the latter end of his career.
I won't spend long on Leuer as he played few minutes last season, but this shot chart does little to display Jon Leuer's strengths on the floor. He's a floor-stretching big who can knock down the 16-23 footer if given the chance. It's unclear how he fits in David Joerger's rotations at this moment, but pundits (and myself) have aspirations of Jon becoming Matt Bonner-lite.
The more I look into the player that Ed Davis is the more I realize this: he's the anti-Darrell Arthur. There's a small sample size to use when looking back at Davis' time with the Memphis Grizzlies due to being in Lionel Hollins dog house, but there's enough evidence to know what kind of player we're dealing with. For starters he was a floor spreader like Arthur was.
He's a cutter. Not a cutter in the sense of Tony Allen moving from three-point to inside looking for a scoring opportunity. Stepping into open space when the defense is drawn to the ball-handler attributes to his paint percentage. He's also good at reading shots and collecting offensive rebounds as 21.6 percent of his offense with Memphis came from them.
Despite the green that surrounds the paint, Kosta Koufos won't be taking many jump shots in Memphis. He was solid around the basket as a member of the Denver Nuggets. I looked over some film to see exactly how Koufos got his points and they were from offensive rebounds and drop-ins. While we applaud centers for their great movement, Koufos deserves it. He's a great cutter like Davis. That's what got him most of his points (accounted for 37 percent of his offense) and he shot extremely well when getting the ball on cuts (61.8 percent).
Underrated part of Koufos' offense? His knack for running in transition, hitting 64.7 percent of the shots in that situation. If Dave Joerger is serious about speeding up the tempo for the Griz he'll fit right in when filling in for Marc Gasol.