With the Los Angeles Lakers sitting dead last in the Western Conference with a disappointing 20-46 record, they have nothing to play for this season. In fact, the Lakers are now officially tanking as they hope to secure their top-three overall pick in the upcoming draft.
One of the very few positives in this situation is the fact that it allows head coach Luke Walton to experiment with his lineup to see what works best. One of the aspects he seems to be looking at right now is developing a three-point-shooting big man.
Larry Nance Jr. appears to be first in line as he has attempted six shots from deep over the past three games after just a total of 13 tries in 44 games prior. He successfully made three out of his six attempts giving him an impressive 50 percent clip from deep in the last three contests. When asked by a Twitter user about the possibility of keeping up this trend, the 6-foot-8 power forward provided an affirmative response.
@Larrydn22 that corner 3 was clutch! Are you going to be shooting a lot more of those, for these last stretch of games?
— RaiderNation (12-4) (@RaiderLaker24) March 13, 2017
That's the plan https://t.co/3yjMdTQa2I
— Larry Nance Jr (@Larrydn22) March 13, 2017
Although this is anything but official, there seems to be some truth behind this theory. As detailed by Harrison Faigen of Silver Screen & Roll, other Laker bigs appear to have also been given the green light to shoot from distance. Prized forward Julius Randle has uncharacteristically shot six attempts from deep over the past two games, making two. Moreover, 19-year-old rookie Ivica Zubac recently mentioned that he is also capable of expanding his range.
A trend seems to be brewing here as Walton looks to improve his team’s scoring abilities by adding a stretch big man to their arsenal. This is not at all impossible as proven by Marc Gasol and Brook Lopez as the two centers have surprisingly combined for a total of 194 treys this year after going for only 15 makes in their first eight seasons in the league.