Andre Drummond‘s awful free throw shooting has been the source of debate among Detroit Pistons fans who are wondering if he should sit the bench late in a close games if opposing teams purposely try to get the ball in his hands and then commit the foul.
As long as teams don’t get whistled for intentional fouls, it would be worth it for them to foul Drummond continually and take advantage of a free throw shooting accuracy that was awful a year ago.
In his rookie season, Drummond shot 60.8 percent in field goals but only 37.1 percent in free throws in 60 games. For some Piston fans, it brought back memories of Ben Wallace, who could play excellent defense and rebound very well.
But Wallace couldn’t hit a layup and didn’t know how to sink free throws. Teams eventually fouled him late in the game and took advantage of his lousy percentages from the line. Sometimes it worked, sometimes it didn’t.
Drummond doesn’t have to improve significantly on his free throw shooting, but he does need to get better. There are enough close NBA games and having one player missing too many free throws can cost a team. It never hurts to spend extra time shooting free throws, including at the NBA level.
But Drummond has been able to make up for it in other ways. He played well in USA Basketball workouts, and his stock hasn’t decreased too much.
New Pistons coach Maurice Cheeks obviously realizes the liability Drummond poses as a free throw shooter. There are ways to work around it, and chances are that Cheeks already has his strategy ready to put into place.