Udonis Haslem is attempting to move his shooting stroke to beyond the three-point arc, according to a report by the Sun Sentinel,
“It’s one thing to work on it, and it’s just another thing to do it in a game,” Haslem said of the next step he has yet to take, with one total 3-point attempt over his first 10 NBAseasons, a miss in 2005-06. “Just being comfortable and just figuring out my spacing, that’s all it is. I just continue to try to figure out my spacing. It’s still a learning process for me. I’m still working at it.”
Fans have had plenty of time to observe Haslem’s game throughout his career solely spent with the Heat. Life behind the three-point line has not been a part of it.
Regardless of whether or not Haslem can actually pull off becoming a distance-shooting big man (he has never made a three in his NBA career), there are only positives that can come from this.
The Heat offense is very spread out. LeBron James needs his space to be able to drive and score or dish. Consequently, the team is filled with three point shooters. Shane Battier, Ray Allen, Mario Chalmers, Norris Cole, James Jones, Michael Beasley, Rashard Lewis, Roger Mason Jr. and even Chris Bosh can all shoot the ball well from outside. In combination with relentless penetration of the lane by Dwyane Wade and James, and the launching of trey balls from the outside, the Heat have been able to overcome large deficits and also put away teams in a very short span of time.
While everyone brings something different to the table, Haslem definitely has a much different skill set from the rest of his team. While that baseline mid-range jumper is usually money, there were times when Haslem’s inability to play beyond the arc last season cluttered things a little too much in the paint.
If Haslem adds a three-point shot to his game, he could have a much bigger role with the Heat in their run for a three-peat. Here’s to hoping that we can hear this phrase more often next season: “Udonis Haslem for threeeeeeeeeeeeeee!!!”