Christian Wood has struggled shooting the ball this season. Besides his mediocre shooting, Wood has been able to finish around the rim better because of lobs and put backs. Wood is a much stronger finisher at 214 pounds. Although Wood isn’t the biggest, he never allows his size to dictate the ability to finish around or on defenders.
For the season, Wood is scoring 67.1 percent around the rim, and on put backs, he is averaging 1.30 points per possession on 1.4 possessions, which puts him in the 83.2 percentile per Synergy.
Wood has become aggressive around the rim, but his perimeter and midrange shooting are suffering this season, which also includes his free-throw shooting as well. He is shooting 32.9 percent from three and 18.2 percent while attempting midrange shots. His free-throw troubles became noticeable in preseason, as he shot 36 percent from the charity strike and now shoots 59.6 percent on 4.5 attempts per game. Is it Wood’s shooting form? Sometimes it’s hard to tell because of his release.
Defenders will alter a shooter’s shot on closeouts depending on the pressure. But if the shooter isn’t phased by the closeout and shoots his shot straight up instead of falling back, he has a better chance of making the jump shot, as it included elevation on the shot. I was able to discuss Wood’s shooting struggles with shooting expert Roger Galo. He gave great insight on how Wood can fix his shot.
This is what happens when Christian Wood doesn’t follow through with his shots when contested, including not being in motion. pic.twitter.com/YjlXpYZmh4— Zach Allen (@RenzoTheDon) December 23, 2021
1. What are you seeing in Christian WOODS mechanics this year that is causing him to struggle? He was a decent free throw shooter last year at 63.1 percent.
I’ve noticed he’s allowed his timing or rhythm to be affected by virtue of his movements being out of sync. He’s got a number of excessive movements of which he’s probably unaware of despite working with one of the best developmentally based coaches in the league. If coach Lucas knew what they were and how detrimental, they were he’d be able to implement them as well or better than me.
2. His three-point shooting has dropped too by three percent? Wood was at 37 percent last year, so what is the difference now?
It would follow, if his movements are not firing on all cylinders at the same time, his shooting percentage would decline. I’ve also recognized he is altering the trajectory of his arc from shot to shot, in some cases, at the foul line, as well as, from the perimeter.
See the difference in Christian Wood’s make and miss on free throw shooting? pic.twitter.com/H1V0aJqHh8— Zach Allen (@RenzoTheDon) December 23, 2021
3. Does need to break down his foundation so his shooting might be smoother?
There are two responses to this question; 1) During the season, there are small adjustments that can be made that can have a “quick fix” effect on both areas for Christian. 2) After the season, he would be better served by a more in-depth “overhaul” which would make him more accurate via achieving higher percentages while adding consistency. This one would make him less susceptible to the inherent challenges he’s currently dealing with that are dragging his percentages down.
When Christian Wood follows through with his jump-shot without falling backwards, it’s usually money. All in one motion and confident. pic.twitter.com/MofU1OTGwa— Zach Allen (@RenzoTheDon) December 23, 2021
4. How long will this take so is shooting can become better for the Rockets?
The “tweaking” strategy if done correctly & effectively can happen within days based on my experiences with the Galo Shot-making system. The other, tearing it down and rebuilding it, can take weeks, sometimes months, contingent on some unknown variables to me at this time.
Hopefully, Wood solves this issue so he can continue his versatility as a consistent player in the NBA. The Houston Rockets need more consistency from Wood, as he wants to be a franchise player for them. His shooting will not be an easy fix, but the coaching staff around him is perfect.
On to Jalen Green, as he is set to play against the Indiana Pacers Thursday night. Green was out for a month due to a hamstring injury suffered versus the Chicago Bulls, which he scored 10 points in. Green will be coming back to new offense, as it provides more spacing. He already flourished inside the offense against the Bulls because of Daniel Theis not playing in the starting lineup.
With Theis not in the starting lineup, Green averages 18 points per contest while having a 51.1 field gold percentage and shooting 40 percent from the three-point line. Green will have more space to drive towards the rim because of his quick first step towards the rim. He’ll get more room to operate amongst the corner for better looks on his jump shots instead of feeling crowded. Green is great at creating space for his scoring needs but hasn’t found his rhythm nor pace on a consistent basis.
Like Josh Christopher, Green has gotten time to observe and learn more about NBA defenses. The goal for Green is to find consistency, rhythm, and pace so he can flourish more as a scorer. Green has an issue of forcing his shot instead of being patient. Hopefully, with the new look offense, he’ll see the court better as scorer and passer. With Theis out the lineup, driving lanes and kick-outs will be provided for him. Coach Silas will make sure Green has a easy first day back, as he is anxious to play.