2. LeBron James, Los Angeles Lakers
STATS: 27.7 ppg, 7.7 rpg, 7.0 apg, 1.3 spg, 51.9 FG%, 37.0 3P%
Over the years, perhaps the biggest improvement in LeBron’s game has been his three-point shooting. As a rookie, he made less than one three per game while shooting 29 percent from deep. As an athletic freak who could do everything else, his shooting was considered his major weakness. Over the course of his career, he worked hard to ensure his three-point shooting wouldn’t hold him back.
He showed significant improvement as a sophomore (35.1 percent), but his three-point percentage dipped back down in his fourth season (31.9 percent) and fifth season (31.5). Now, he shoots between 36 percent and 37 percent, and he’s making 2.1 threes per game this season. His career-high came in 2012-13, when he shot 40.6 percent from long range in his third season with the Miami Heat.
“Once I’m in the gym, I’m in my range,” James told ESPN. “It’s not a confidence thing. It’s a work ethic thing. You put in the work and then you trust it when you get on the floor. I work on it when we got practice. And when you work on stuff and you put the work in, [you get results].”
Over time, LeBron managed to turn his biggest weakness into a strength. With five more made threes, he’ll have 1,686 in his career – which would be 19th-most in NBA history (passing Steve Nash).
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