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The wrong Wizards got the memo about shooting more threes this season

Washington Wizards v Indiana Pacers Photo by Nic Antaya/Getty Images

Daily Digits is a new daily feature we’re doing at Bullets Forever this year where we take a look at stats about the Wizards. We’ll dive into the numbers, add some context, and discuss how they affect the product on the court.

Today’s stat is where the Wizards rank in 3-point attempts per game this season, which is...


The Wizards were 23rd in 3-point attempts last season, averaging just 26.5 per game. Scott Brooks put a high emphasis on boosting those numbers this season and there’s no question it has had an impact. They’re attempting 32.9 per game this season as they’ve gone from a below-average team at 3-point shooting volume to an above-average one.

Problem is, as that’s happened their 3-point percentage has plummeted. Generally speaking, you can expect a little bit of a downtick in accuracy when you shoot more often, but not enough to go from the fourth-most accurate team to the fourth-least accurate team.

To understand why the Wizards’ accuracy has gone down so drastically, it’s helpful to take a look at where the extra shots have come from this season. Here’s a look at how individual player averages have changed since last season.

Changes in Wizards 3-point attempts since last season

Player 2017-18 2018-19
Player 2017-18 2018-19
John Wall 4.1 5.2
Bradley Beal 6.5 6.8
Otto Porter 4.1 3.8
Markieff Morris 2.8 4.2
Tomas Satoransky 1.4 1.4
Other players 7.6 11.5

As you can see, the three players who would help the Wizards the most by taking more threes (Bradley Beal, Otto Porter Jr., and Tomas Satoransky) have all been fairly stagnant, while the rest of the team has embraced the green light.

That’s where the Trevor Ariza trade could provide a key benefit for Washington. He’s averaging 7.8 per game in his first four games as a Wizard. Kelly Oubre Jr. and Austin Rivers combined to average 8.3 per game and they both shot 31 percent from deep this season.

Although he has struggled in his first four games in Washington (he’s just 8-of-31 so far), one would expect he should get back to normal soon. He’s a career 35.2 percent shooter from deep and shot 36 percent while in Phoenix on a team that has been just as inaccurate from deep as the Wizards. As long as Ariza gets back in rhythm, it should open things up just a little bit more for the rest of the offense to hopefully help the team work out a better shot distribution.