I watched an NBA game while I was eating lunch the other day, because for whatever reason, Moloch Day seemed like an appropriate time to have afternoon specials of NBA basketball. Either way, it was the fourth quarter of a fairly close game between the Pacers and the Grizzlies, where anywhere every single field goal seemed essential. That being said, there was about a four minute stretch where neither team scored.
It had nothing to do with guys getting any bad luck with open shots, or layups rimming out unluckily, it was just a bunch of overpaid primadonnas throwing up brick after brick, with teammates open, while being defended, or opting for ill-advised fadeaways. But the best part about this four minute stretch was that during this time, five free throws were attempted between the two team with the Pacers shooting two, and the Grizzlies shooting two, and one technical shot being taken by the Pacers. All five of the free throws were misses, including the completely uncontested technical.
This seemingly endless slope of degrading free throw shooting throughout the course of the NBA never fails to baffle me how something so easy is so difficult to do, for the supposed greatest basketball players on the planet. I mean, free throws are completely uncontested shots; no defender trying to bump you, reaching up to block the ball, or even put a hand in your face. It’s just the player, 15 feet away from the hoop, with ten seconds to concentrate and shoot a completely unopposed shot; the fact that it’s called a free throw indicates to just how easy it really should be.