Free throws Rumors
Williamson and Vinson have worked daily after practices and shootarounds to refine the quirks in the 20-year-old’s shot and put a foundation in place that’ll allow him to shoot with confidence. Zion shot 61 percent from the free-throw line during his first 10 games of this season, and it was evident he still had a lot of work to do. But as of late, his shot is starting to improve. Over the past 14 games, he’s shooting 76.6 percent on free throws with 7.6 attempts per game. “It’s the repetition with Fred,” Williamson said. “Me and Coach Fred are always in the lab working. He’s always coming up with small things about consistency and it’s really giving me confidence with the free throws. I’m trying to go out there and make every shot feel the same.”
In a back-and-forth game, the Kings shot just 5-of-11 from the free throw line. They certainly could have hit more than five, but let’s get back to those 11 attempts. The Heat’s Jimmy Butler hit 14-of-16 from the stripe on his own. Overall, the Heat outshot the Kings 26-11 at the line … in a one point game. “One player on their team made more free throws than our whole team shot,” coach Luke Walton said. “It’s going to be hard to win when that’s happening. We stayed in attack mode, that’s all we can do.”
“If I go to the rim and there can be contact and not be a foul, then I feel like if they go to the rim and there is contact, then there shouldn’t be a foul,” De’Aaron Fox explained after the loss. Both the Kings and Heat scored an identical 42 points in the paint. Sacramento shot 21-of-34 in the key and Miami shot 21-for-35. It was a physical game, especially at the rim, but one team struggled to get calls and the other did not.
“If it was consistently a no-call or a foul, then I would be fine with it,” Fox said. “But I don’t think the whistle was consistent on both ends, so that’s where the frustration comes from, at least on my end. I don’t want to speak for anybody else.” The Kings came into the night fourth in the league in free throw attempts at 25.5 per game. That’s a tremendous improvement over the 20.3 attempts they averaged last season.
Justin Kubatko: Damian Lillard’s free throws in his last seven games: 🎯 6-6 🎯 4-4 🎯 12-12 🎯 6-6 🎯 12-12 🎯 12-12 🎯 11-11 Overall, he went 63-63 from the FT line, the most makes without a miss over a seven-game span in NBA history. The previous mark of 60 was held by Dirk Nowitzki (2010). pic.twitter.com/F3U0PAoAct
Justin Kubatko: Damian Lillard has made all 52 of his free throws over his last six games. It’s the second time in his career he’s shot 52-52 from the FT line over a six-game span. The only player in NBA history to make more free throws without a miss over a six-game span is Dirk Nowitzki. pic.twitter.com/Zx3Ez4lJ08