The game of basketball depends on one thing: getting the basketball into the hoop. After all you can’t win a game if you don’t score. For your shooters if they can’t find the bottom of the net it may be time to have them try something different like drive to the hoop. If your players can’t hit the broadside of a barn perhaps they should take a seat on the bench. There is nothing worse than watching a cold shooter not even be able to find the rim. Better hope they get hot!
Of course this goes for more than just shooters. Post players who can’t get the ball into the basket aren’t doing you any good. Players can’t hit their free throws? All stuff that can make a coach want to pull their hair out. NBA history is littered with players who can’t hit the broadside of a barn. Chris Dudley in a 16 year NBA career was a 45% free throw shooter and Shaquille O’Neal was a 52% shooter. He was so bad teams intentionally fouled him at the end of games knowing he would likely miss and it became known as hack-a-Shaq (since outlawed). From the floor Minnesota Timberwolves’ guard Ricky Rubio hits only 36% of his field goals and even the greats like the Los Angeles Lakers’ Kobe Bryant aren’t immune to this as he hit at a 35% rate during his final season.
Even the best players on the biggest stage can have trouble. In Game 6 of the 2003 NBA Finals New Jersey Nets forward Kenyon Martin hit 3 of his 23 shots. At least he found the bottom of the net which was small consolation as his team lost the title that day. In Game 7 of the 1978 Finals Seattle SuperSonics forward Dennis Johnson went 0-14 and Boston Celtics guard Ray Allen went 0-13 in the 2010 Finals. Great shooters like Indiana Pacers guard Reggie Miller are not immune, going 1-16 in Game 1 of the 2000 NBA Finals. Perhaps the most famous is New York Knicks guard John Starks 1994 Game 7 Finals 2-18 performance (0-11 from 3 point range) that allowed the Houston Rockets to hoist the trophy.
College players and teams are not immune either. In November 2014 Savannah State fell behind to Louisville 29-0 to start the game and hit 2 of their 26 field goal attempts. Louisville was pretty darn good though as they reached the Elite 8 that year. Poor Savannah State had endured another game like this, this time at Kansas State in 2008 hitting 1 out of 23 shots in the second half, an NCAA record for futility. In 1997 Rice and South Florida tangled and managed to score 8 points in the first half, yes 8! South Florida led 6-2 at half and won 49-46. In 2008 Texas A&M went nearly 17 minutes without even scoring a point in a game against Oklahoma. That must have been hard to watch for Aggie Nation.
So after the game is over it’s going to be good to get the team back practicing so they will be able to hit the broadside of a barn. You’re not going to win many games if your team can’t.