Thad started off this season so hot I thought there was zero chance he'd ever leave the starting lineup again. He was draining threes, driving to the hole, playing tough D and leading the team in scoring.
I'm not sure what happened over the next 21 games leading to what has to be the ultimate insult in the game of basketball, being benched in favor of Willie Green, so I thought we'd take a look at his splits to see if we can't at least figure out when his game started going downhill.
Totals (24 games)
In Wins (10 games)
In Losses (14 games)|
I highlighted what I found to be telling stats from those splits. First of all, check out his average game score, points-per-shot and free throw attempts in the team wins. Now, look at his 3-point attempts in losses. These numbers go a long way to backing up the theory that as Thad goes, so goes this team. Let's keep digging.
First 8 Games (3-5)
Middle 8 Games (4-4)
Last 8 Games (3-5)|
Interesting, if not particularly telling, numbers here. In the first 8 games, Thad's three-point shooting buoyed his PPS, in the second 8 his three-point shooting fell off drastically, but he made up for in PPS by getting to the line more often. Both areas failed him in the final 8. His minutes fell, as did his usage, hard to tell which was the cause and which was the effect. He did up his rebounding numbers, but that could be a direct result of the extended time he's played at the 4.
I absolutely hate seeing this kid marginalized in the offense. Mo Cheeks seemed to almost brag about not calling any plays for him, I can only hope that DiLeo finds a way to call his number at least a couple times a half. The team would be better for it.
As I said earlier, proper spacing by the team as a whole should lead to better looks for Thad, and hopefully will raise his three-point percentage. His shooting percentage, as a whole, would benefit greatly from less of a reliance on the jumper. We'll get into this a little deeper in the next post.