Ty Lawson: Scoring at the rim

In trying to find something to write about, I found myself perusing Ty Lawson’s stats.  I didn’t glean anything of note that wasn’t already beaten to death in the weeks following the trade, but I guess in the middle of September, if you’re reading this, anything seems novel.  In drawing comparisons, I decided to use James Harden and Pat Beverley as controls because James Harden is really good and thus, an easy point of reference and Pat Beverley is the most skilled player in the league.  Also, Pat Beverley is the incumbent.

To begin, Lawson shot just 34% from 3 on the year, which might come as a surprise to those of you expecting Steve Nash in his prime.  Beverley shot 35.6%, a figure the cumulation of which caused me to dislodge numerous chunks of hair from my scalp, so that’s not good.  Beverley also shot about twice as many per game as Lawson, with most being wide the &**$ open, so maybe there’s hope.  Ty seems to have fared better from the corners (4-8 in the right corner; 4-8 in the left corner), so maybe that’s the solution, but wasn’t that the elixir for getting D-Mo and Terrence Jones up to respectable marksmanship?  (It seems like that’s always the response regarding any poor shooter.  Stick them in the corner.)  Do we have everyone stand in the corner?

On a serious note, Lawson was 61% in the restricted area compared to 58% for Harden.  Beverley shot just 47% the 107 times he tried inside (compared to 256 and 510 attempts for Lawson and Harden, respectively).

Harden had 853 total drives on the year, shooting 48.5% on those drives, scoring 636 total points off of the drives.  That was the best aggregate output in the entire league.  Lawson was 17th in the league, scoring 370 total points off of his 892 total drives.

Harden drove 10.7 times per game, scoring 8 points per game, with the Rockets scoring 14.3 points per game off of his drives.  Lawson, in comparison, drove 11.9 times per game, scoring 4.9 points per game, with his team scoring 13.9 points per game.  That 13.9 figure is good for 4th in the entire league, 3rd if adjusting for Ish Smith’s “what is this doing here?” sample size.  So while Lawson isn’t as individually prolific as Harden (who the hell is?) he’s attacking just as much, and helping his team.

That’s a lot of pressure that will be placed on opponents at the basket.  If you play the Rockets this season, you will need rim protection.

I mean, really.  What Houston Rockets point guard has been able to make that play in traffic since Steve Francis?  However, Houston will have to hope that, at least some of the time, Lawson can be confident in taking that open shot at the three point line, and making it.

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About the author: Rahat Huq is a lawyer in real life and the founder and editor-in-chief of www.Red94.net.

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