Trae Young took the college basketball landscape by storm last season with his ability to shoot from anywhere on the floor. In one season at Oklahoma, Trae Young shot an eye-opening 328 three-pointers, while still maintaining a three-point percentage of 36%. Being only 6’2, weighing 180 lbs, and averaging nearly 31 ppg, his game reminded a lot of people, Stephen Curry.
Now, as a rookie drafted number five overall by the Hawks, there are a lot of questions as to how Trae’s game will translate over to the NBA being the size that he is. Only a few players of his size really have been dominant guards in this era. Allen Iverson and Stephen Curry (again) come to mind.
Much like Curry, Trae will come into this season with the expectation to be a scoring first guard and will have the ability to shoot a lot of three-point shots.
Will he become the 4th rookie to make 160 three-pointers in a season?
Trae Young flashing range early on.
— Basketball Society (@BBallSociety_) March 8, 2018
Only three other rookies have completed this feat before. Rookie sensation Donovan Mitchell leads all rookies with three-pointers made with 187 last season, and Damian Lillard and Steph Curry don’t fall short behind at 185, and 166 threes respectively. When averaged out, 160 three-pointers in an 82 game season is 1.95 threes made per game, if he were to play all 82 games.
It’s still a difficult feat for most rookies because of just the amount of playing time they receive during their first season, but Trae Young has plenty of opportunities to do it this upcoming season.
Outside of Trae Young, Atlanta is very limited offensively. With the way the current roster is comprised, there is no real veteran presence who is a scoring threat, especially at the guard position. Jeremy Lin is the savviest veteran, playing with multiple teams over his career. But Lin is coming off a horrific knee injury and will be easing back into this season, trying to avoid having his season end early once again.
All of the wings on the team have played spot minutes in their career, and the likes of Justin Anderson and Taurean Prince aren’t guys you’d want to run your offense through.
Trae is going to have to be the focal point in the offense of this rebuilding team. Coaches will let Trae have the green light so you can expect a lot of three-point attempts out of him this upcoming season.
There are still reasons to be concerned that Trae could get off to a slow start. Teams already know the type of player that he is with the amount of national spotlight that was on him throughout his college career. A game mirroring the great Stephen Curry is a fine line to walk in the NBA, considering he is such an anomaly.
Many players will force him to take tougher three-point shots, forcing him to drive to the basket. With the size of the big men in the NBA like Joel Embiid and DeAndre Jordan alike, that could be a recipe for disaster. Expect a lot of pressure and face guarding on Young right when he steps over half court. He has to be ready for it.
Nonetheless, Trae Young will have a great chance to become the fourth rookie to complete this 160 three-pointer feat. With an offensive (basically) running through the rookie, the opportunities will be there for him more than most rookies would normally see. Knowing his past, he will not be afraid to shoot, no matter how cold he gets.
You know what they say? The only way to get out of a cold streak is to keep shooting.