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The 5 Worst Lakers Shooters in the Modern Era - Fan’s Analysis
Since the introduction of the three-point line in the 1979-1980 season the Los Angeles Lakers have given fans like me plenty of reasons to cheer - Magic Johnson, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Showtime, Kobe Bryant, Shaquille O'Neal, 10 NBA titles and the Mark Madsen dance.
But not every player who has donned the purple and gold is headed for the Hall of Fame. Take, for instance, the five players listed below. Since the introduction of the three-point line in 1979-1980 these Lakers regulars (minimum 1,000 FG attempts) have struggled the most to put the biscuit in the basket.
#5) Derek Fisher - 40.2% (2,569 of 6,382 FGA)
Personally, as a Lakers fan, I really don't care about Derek Fisher's poor field goal percentage. Derek Fisher did exactly what the Lakers asked him to do in contributing to five Lakers championships, providing leadership, stability, and toughness. While in just over 12 seasons with the Lakers Fisher barely exceeded the 40% threshold, he stepped it up in during the five Lakers championship runs. In 101 playoff games in the Lakers title seasons with D-Fish ('00, '01, '02, '09, '10) he shot a somewhat better 42.2% (316 of 479) and a respectable 38.1% from the 3-point line (122 of 320). Sure, Fisher threw up his share of bricks, but still - five rings. 'Nuff said.
#4) Metta World Peace - 39.6% (690 of 1,742 FGA)
Crazy is as crazy does. Since joining the Lakers in 2010 Ron Artest, er, Metta World Peace, has thrown up some crazy shots. But just like D-Fish, Artest helped the Lakers win the title in 2010 and even hit a couple of huge shots in Game 7 against the Boston Celtics. But even then, nobody thought he'd make them - except for Deity. Here is what Artest was quoted as saying on ESPN.com (article here), ""Phil didn't want me to shoot the 3…You can hear him in your head, 'Ron, don't shoot.' Whatever. Pow, 3…A voice came down and told me to shoot the ball. 'Shoot the ball,' he said. God told me to shoot the ball and I shot the ball." It's a good thing Artest has faith in something, because Lakers fans don't have a lot of faith in Ron-Ron when he throws up his flat set-shots.
#3) Sasha Vujacic - 39.3% (694 of 1,767 FGA)
Two things are undeniable about Vujacic's tenure in Los Angeles. First, Vujacic had terrible hair. Second, his shooting percentage was even worse. Lakers fans were not overly surprised by the sub-40% shooting percentage from Sasha after watching him hit just 32.9% (141 of 429) during his first two seasons in the league (2005 and 2006). But still, Sasha hit the game-clinching free throws in Game 7 of the 2010 NBA championship against the Boston Celtics to put the Lakers up 83-79 with 11.7 seconds left. Those two free throws made up for six-plus years of bricks from Vujacic because it all comes down to titles for Lakers fans, and Sasha helped bring home the trophy.
#2) Devean George - 39.2% (955 of 2,435 FGA)
Ah, the perpetually frustrating Devean George. After being drafted in the first round of the 1999 draft (23rd overall), there were times when it looked like George would be a legitimate starter and other stretches when it looked like he'd be bagging groceries at the Piggly Wiggly before the end of the season. In 2004 Devean started 48 games and averaged 7.4 points and 4.0 rebounds - but barely shot above 40%. And that's right about where George stayed for seven seasons in Tinseltown. Good riddance.
#1) Brian Shaw - 38.5% (449 of 1167 FGA)
Shut up! Just shut up, right now! Nobody talks bad about Brian Shaw in my presence. Nobody! Titles in 2000, 2001, and 2002. Lakers Assistant Coach from 2004-2011 and should be head coach right now. (Sorry, Mike Brown, but it's true.) Hearing people talk bad about Brian Shaw in the presence of a Lakers fan is like hearing somebody talk bad about your siblings - even if it's true you still want to punch the person in the face. So all I'm going to say about Brian Shaw's shooting percentage is this - thanks for the titles, Brian!
Stats current as of 4/5/2012 and provided by pro-basketball-reference.com (data here).
Andrew Sweat is a loyal Lakers fan. More from this author:
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