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The Pacers' 10-10-10 Club

A great post went up at CanisHoopus on Sunday. Without giving too much away, the post implores Michael Beasley to focus his considerable offensive talents on making himself into a 10-10-10 player, for the sake of efficiency. 10-10-10 doesn’t refer to a triple double but rather a player who who attempts 10 free throws and scores 10 points in the paint to go along with 10 jumpshots.

The idea was created by George Karl for a certain small forward who had a tendency to get passive offensively, relying on jumpshots instead of attacking the basket. The premise is that a player needs to "earn" the right to shoot contested jumpers by first attacking the basket and getting to the free throw line. From CanisHoopus:

The 10-10-10 Rule is elegant in its simplicity. It doesn’t demand intricate playcalling. It doesn’t require hours of extra work in the gym or watching game tape. It isn’t a new philosophy or system, or an indictment that the player has been doing something wrong. It’s a challenge….one that can be met by the player in his current situation playing his current system with his current teammates. All it requires is diversification.

The beauty is in its indirectness. It solves the problem without actually addressing the problem….or in many ways, even saying there is a problem. Like a river that runs around a rock, rather than through it. George Karl didn’t tell Carmelo to play better. Just play differently.

As part of a follow up post I did at Hickory-High, I found a few other players around the league who might benefit from taking up the 10-10-10 challenge this season. Two Pacers featured prominently on my list.

Tyler Hansbrough - Hansbrough had no trouble getting to the free throw line in college, and it appears the same knack has translated to the NBA, with him averaging 8.9 FTA/40 last season. However, Hansbrough has found that the ease with which he scored at the rim in college has not translated quite as well. There were times last season, and this preseason, when he seemed all too comfortable retreating away from the paint and settling for the mid-range jumper, which was just a complimentary piece of his college game. Hansbrough averaged more FGA/40 from 16-23ft. last year than he did at the rim. Mid-range and long jumpshots (10-23ft.) accounted for 47% of his FGA last season. This year he needs to become a better finisher, but also maintain his aggressiveness in attacking the basket. It will make both him and the Pacers more efficient in the long run.

Danny Granger - Granger has worked hard the past few seasons to develop his dribble drive gameand diversify his offensive attack beyond just the long jumpshot. In many ways the results were positive, with him averaging 7.5 FTA/40 last season. However, the percentage of his overall shots which came on three pointers has increased each of the last 4 season, pushing all the way to 38% last season. Continuing tofocus on increasing his scoring close to the basket will make him a more dangerous offensive player, open better looks from behind the 3PT line, and make the Pacers a more efficient team.

You can also check out the rest of my list over at Hickory-High.