Lets just start with true, straight to the point statements:
Danny Granger has been very disappointing so far this season and does not look like the franchise player we signed to a nice fat contract last off season.
His shooting percentage is by far the worst of his career.
His 3pt shoot percentage is the worst it has been since his rookie season.
That statement is 100% true in my opinion. The real questions are:
2. Should we be worried that this is the Danny Granger we have designated our franchise player?
After the jump, a couple thoughts on both... and of course a poll.
There are a few possible explanations for his poor (for him) play. Some are more "upbeat" I guess you could say and some are much more cynical.
1. His team is even worse than last year.
The fact is, Granger has no co-star. He has no one on this team to take off any pressure. But, the same could be said about last year though right? Well, no. Last year he had 2 decent point guards: TJ Ford and J. Jack. TJ was MUCH better than he was this year and JJ was a veteran presence who could take pressure off of Granger both could set up Granger with easier buckets. Earl Watson and AJ Price just don't give to this team what Ford and Jack did last year. Price is a 2nd round pick rookie and Watson has a PER of 10 ish which is just downright awful.
2. He isn't 100% healthy.
He started the year hurt. He finally took time off and he came back quicker than expected. WAY quicker. This could explain why he is settling for so many jumpers and could explain why his shot is off: he just doesn't have the lift and explosiveness he had last year because his heel hurts.
3. It is just a bad year.
It happens. He could just be having an off half year.
4. He isn't as good as he was last year.
He could frankly just not be as good as he was last year. He could be a an 18ish pg scorer not a 25pg scorer. LAST year could have been the aberration, not this year.
5. He got his contract, now he doesn't care.
This happens too. I don't think he is that type of player, but its a possibility. Wouldn't be the first time in NBA history.
6. Scouts are more focused on him because of last year and have found a weakness.
He broke outlast year as a star. Naturally, this means he is goign to get more focus from opposing scouts and coaches. They are simply adjusting to the threat of Granger and Granger is not used to it and struggling because of it.
I will stop there. Post some of your ideas in the comments.
Am I concerned?
No, not yet. He has improved every single year in the league. This obviously points to him being a gym rat who wants to improve each year. I really think his team is just so bad that the game plan is "stop Granger at all costs, let Murphy beat you." I also don't really believe he is 100% healthy. He should have been shut down an extra few weeks just as a precaution.
Now, if this were to continue for another year, then I would be worried. But not yet. I don't think we should crucify him (like some of you are doing) just yet.