Jason Kidd and the Fountain of Youth?

Dallas has been sub-spectacular early this season, with a 2-3 record matching its stuttering offense and sometimes vulnerable defense. But one revelation in Big D's early schedule has been Jason Kidd's shooting touch. The one thing Kidd can't do (circa 2007-08) is shoot. Last year with the Nets, he was the top rebounder (as a point guard) and the top assist man ... but he just couldn't score efficiently. That led Kidd to give up his shot attempts, perhaps as a way of avoiding ridicule for the clanks to come. (See also: Beijing, where Kidd went several group play games with no FGAs ... as the team's starting point guard.)

But in Dallas, Kidd started hitting his threes. And he hasn't stopped. And he's taking a greater share of his FGAs from behind the arc, too, exacerbating the bonus. This graph shows two sets of data from throughout Kidd's career: his three-point shooting percentage, and the share of all Kidd shot attempts (FTAs included, adjusted) which have come from behind the arc. His Dallas performance truly stands out.

About half of Kidd's '08-09 shooting possessions have been threes ... and he's hitting them at about 46%. He also hit 46% of his three in Dallas last season, far better than his efforts in New Jersey. How? Why?
I'm hazarding a guess here, but ... NJ's secondary stars (Vince Carter, Richard Jefferson) played on the perimeter. While both had slashing in their repertoire, both also took a ton of threes. The Dallas offense is more predicated on a mid-range attack. Sure, Dirk Nowitzki steps back and fires threes occasionally. But he's more likely to spot out from 15-18 feet, or drive into the lane to draw fouls. Josh Howard plays a similar style. These adjustments leave the perimeter more open for Kidd (and other shooters) ... and even a shooter lacking recent confidence like Kidd can take open threes all day.

Sports Connection

Connecting you to your favorite North Texas sports teams as well as sports news around the globe.

Allen and Markkanen Lead Cavaliers Past Mavericks 114-96

Here Are the Highest-Paid MLB Players After Scherzer, Seager Deals

This isn't to say the percentages will hold up, or even that's it is the best result for the Mavericks. (Kidd is such a crafty passer that you might want him to drive more, even if he's become a turnover machine and he can't finish at the rim.) But Kidd is certainly reinventing himself to become more efficient on offense in Dallas. It's worth keeping an eye on as Dallas hits the heavy Western challengers early this season.

(Photo by Getty Images)

Jason Kidd and the Fountain of Youth? originally appeared on NBA FanHouse on Sun, 09 Nov 2008 10:57:00 EST . Please see our terms for use of feeds.

Permalink | Email this | Linking Blogs | Comments

Copyright FANHO - FanHouse
Contact Us