Westbrook’s glaring weakness this season — and in seasons past — is his ability to shoot. Too many times, Westbrook settles for pull-up 3s and long 2s. He shoots ill-advised shots early in the shot clock and that can kill an offense.
This season he shot 29.0 percent from 3-point range, jacking up 5.6 attempts per game. Last season, he shot 29.8 percent from downtown on 4.1 attempts per game. If he at least shot the below-average 34.3 percent he shot two seasons ago, that would’ve been a step up from what he shot this season.
Also, Westbrook wasn’t able to shoot well from the free throw line. He shot 65.6 percent from the line, which was a career low for him. Before that, his career low was 73.7 percent, which was last year. That is very discouraging because Russ is a player who routinely gets to the line.
To improve his shooting mark, Westbrook will have to take shots that are later in the shot clock and take more drives to the rim. To improve his free throw percentage, he will just have to shoot through it. The more drives he gets to the rim will result in more trips to the line.
Free throw shooting is a very routine skill, so the more he does it, the more he will get used to it. Westbrook only had 451 free throw attempts this season, which was his lowest total since 2013-14, when he had 293. He will need to drive to the rim more.