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    Lakers’ Darvin Ham gives Anthony Davis the green light on 3-pointers
    • October 17, 2023

    EL SEGUNDO — Lakers coach Darvin Ham wants to see Anthony Davis let it fly from behind the arc more.

    To the point where Ham recently publicly made a request when it comes to Davis’ 3-point shooting.

    “I know he won’t do it – maybe he’ll shock me – but I’ve requested to see six 3-point attempts a game,” Ham recently said. “Three per half, at least. I wouldn’t put that on him if I didn’t think he was capable.

    “He’s more than capable and I just think once he calibrates his mind to have that focus, he’ll do it. Amongst all the other things, the great things that he does.”

    Although Davis’ play during the preseason suggests he’ll take more 3-point shots, Ham had good reasons for saying he’d be surprised if Davis took as many as he requested.

    Lauri Markkanen (2021-22 and 2022-23) and Michael Porter Jr. (last season) are the only players listed as 6-foot-10 or taller who took at least six 3-pointers per game in the past two seasons.

    Davis attempted 1.3 3-point shots per game last season, his lowest output from behind the arc since the 2014-15 season. His career-high mark for 3-point shots per game in a season is 3.5 (2019-20), which is the only time he took more than three.

    Davis is shooting the 3-ball during this preseason at a significantly higher frequency (5.29 3s per 36 minutes) than he did during the 2022-23 regular season (1.4 per 36 minutes). But he took an even higher frequency of 3-pointers – 5.55 per 36 minutes – in last year’s preseason before dialing it back significantly when the games started to count in the standings.

    Davis doesn’t have a specific number of 3-point shots in mind he wants to take per game.

    “It’s based on the style of play, the flow of the game,” Davis responded when asked what aggression looks like for him from long range. “Some games, I might take one, some I might take none. Some I might take six. I don’t want to come in like ‘I need to shoot six’ and start thinking about that and start shooting bad shots, right?

    “If I’m open, I’ll shoot it. Or if I’m in rhythm, I’ll shoot it, but I don’t want to be hovering around the 3-point line too much all game. But, I just go out and shoot with confidence. And if that’s six of them, four, three, one, none, whatever the flow of the game is telling me, that’s how many I’ll shoot.”

    This is the bigger-picture point Ham wants Davis to embrace: Be aggressive and don’t hesitate from anywhere on the floor.

    “I want him to be aggressive from all three levels,” Ham said after Tuesday’s practice. “I don’t want him to think ‘OK, man,’ and second-guess his shot. He catches it and no one’s in front of him or his defender is off of him, I want him shooting the ball from three.

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    “If he happens to be in the corner, he catches it, I want him to shoot the ball from three. While still being aggressive in the low post and the midrange. It’s not like I just want him to become this exclusive stretch big all of a sudden. I just want him to be aggressive from each and every spot on the floor.”

    That’s what Davis has shown so far during preseason, with the final exhibition coming Thursday night against the Phoenix Suns at Acrisure Arena in Thousand Palms.

    Davis hasn’t hesitated when defenders have sagged off of him from behind the arc. He’s either attempted 3-point shots quickly, used the extra space given to him to drive into the paint or quickly flowed into another action.

    “Once we see you working, we’re gonna encourage our guys to be aggressive in places where we know they can be successful,” Ham said. “It’s no different with A.D. Just seeing how he’s worked this summer. The way he’s attacking his individual game, as well as figuring out ways to enhance the team and make them more effective with his presence, it just makes it easy for me to encourage them to be aggressive and assertive and have that trust.”

    ​ Orange County Register