Chicago Bulls rookie 7-footer Lauri Markkanen is having an incredible debut season. The 20-year-old is a remarkable long-distance shooter.
He is connecting on more three-pointers per game than any rookie in the history of the league. Markkanen has averaged 2.4 successful threes per game, which beats out the previous record set by Damian Lillard (2.3) in 2013.
For comparison, Stephen Curry averaged 2.1 three-pointers per game during his first professional season in 2010. Allen Iverson averaged 2.0 threes in 1997. Last season’s rookie three-point leader was Buddy Hield, who hit 1.7 long-distance shots per game.
Markkanen finds most of his shots on non-corner attempts from long range. He ranks Top 5 among all Eastern Conference forwards with 2.1 three-pointers from above the arc per game.
Over the last four games, his rate on this shot type is the best in the league. Last night, he tied Dirk Nowitzki for most three-pointers in a single game by someone who is at least 7-foot.
There is clearly something special about this talented, young big man and the Bulls would be wise to build around their developing star.
After a career-high 33 points against Kristaps Porzingis and the New York Knicks, expect more hype to surround the Finnish-born player.