Wednesday, January 04, 2012

A Foolish Consistency Is the Hobgoblin of Little Minds

Emerson was explicitly describing statesmen, philosophers, and divines but, lowering our gaze to the level of Josh Smith's shot selection provides an example of why the quote lives on in our memory.

Josh Smith, shot attempts outside of 16 feet, game-by-game, 2011-12 season:


Over the last five-plus seasons, Smith has attempted 1773 shots outside of 16 feet. That's 4.6 attempts per game. He has made 562 of those shots. That's 1.5 makes a game.

He is a career 28% three-point shooter. He is a career 67.3% free throw shooter. He is not a good shooter. He cannot consistently make these shots. Yet he insists on taking them. His motives are unclear but definitely unwise. Every jump shot undermines both his own significant breadth of talent and his team's chances of winning.

One can fairly give credit to Derrick Rose and Luol Deng, fairly apportion blame to Jeff Teague and Al Horford for missing free throws in the final 20 seconds, but, even by the pitiful offensive standards of last night's game, the eight possessions Josh Smith used to score four points on jump shots were markedly sub-par and we should expect nothing other than similarly wasted possessions in the future.