Miami Heat want Norris Cole to Shoot More This Season


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When you’re a rookie point guard thrown into a team with three All-Stars and future Hall of Famers, it can be tough to find a window to score. That was Norris Cole’s situation, after being drafted in the first round out of Cleveland State.

Late in the postseason, however, Cole did find his niche as an on-ball stopper. As players do, he went into this summer looking for areas to improve.

Via Shandel Richardson, the South Florida Sun-Sentinel:

"The part of his game that needs most development is being more aggressive offensively. Cole said Monday he wants to become more of a scoring threat.“We had so many playmakers [last year] that there were times I deferred to let those guys make the plays,” Cole said. “They were great at it…. But I also I saw [plays] where I could have been more aggressive to attack.”"

Dwyane Wade is confident Cole can do that.

"“He’s gotten better individually for sure,” Wade said. “He had a hell of a summer working out and getting prepared. Defensively, he’s a monster. The next wave for him is how to be effective as a point guard and effective as a scoring guard. He’s going to have to figure out the perfect way to do that. It’s not always easy for guys but if he can figure it out he can be very dangerous for us.”"

With LeBron James gone, he should have an opportunity to score the rock a bit more than he did his first three seasons. When he first came into the league, Cole was a mid-range shooter who mostly scored off the dribble. Through coaching, mostly with assistant Dan Craig, Cole learned to extend his range to the three-point line and refined his spot-up shooting.

Cole averaged 6.4 points per game last season, but shot just 41.4 percent from the floor. He’s never been an efficient shooter, and that will have to improve if he wants the opportunity to shoot more often.

Cole will compete with Mario Chalmers and Shabazz Napier for playing time this season. Of the three, Cole is the best defender. That could give him an edge, but he will need to improve that scoring efficiency.