http://8points9seconds.com/2015/02/05/roy-hibbert-scoring-indiana-pacers/Coming into this season, Hibbert had never taken as many as 30% of his shots from outside of 10 feet. This year, however, that rate has ballooned to almost 42%.
Meanwhile, the percentage of Roy’s attempts this year coming “at the rim” (meaning inside 3 feet) is barely half of his career split entering the year (19% vs. 35%). For a Pacer team that has espoused “Smashmouth Basketball” since coach Frank Vogel took control just over four years ago, the growth of the gold (swagger) triangle in the above chart, seemingly at the expense of the blue (collar) triangle, should be disturbing.
And it is.
But it is not entirely unplanned.
Getting Shots for Roy Hibbert
Before Saturday night’s game against the Kings, Candace Buckner of the Indianapolis Star brought up Roy Hibbert’s performance against the Knicks (18 points, 10 rebounds, 9-for-11 shooting). She asked Coach Vogel if he was content with Hibbert taking so many outside shots.
“We certainly want to get [Hibbert] shots in the paint,” Vogel responded. “When possible.”
In a follow up, Buckner asked how much Hibbert’s ability (or inability) to establish good, deep position drove the quality of the looks the big man gets.
“That’s a big part of it,” said Vogel. “That’s going to be his struggle his whole career. Guys are going to get into his body. He’s got great length, so smaller defenders are going to try to get into his body and push him off the spots. It’s a tough thing to get position against a smaller, quicker guy that’s intent to beat you to spots. He’s got to continue to work on that and try to establish himself.”
And work they do, but that takes time and space — neither of which is provided in abundance by the moribund Pacer offense. Indiana is continually trying to manufacture shots, and Hibbert is as good as any other candidates they have for more shots.