The Bank Shot Turns Derrick Rose Into a Good Jump Shooter

Published 02/15/2016 by Mika Honkasalo
  • This season, Derrick Rose hasn’t been an efficient scorer, averaging 0.93 Points per Shot, ranking him 308th among 321 qualified players.

  • Rose has a 52.4 Open+ FG% and a 34.0 Contest+ FG%.

  • The Bulls have been outscored by 3.3 points per 100 possessions with Rose on the court this season, compared to outscoring opponents by 2.0 points when he sits.

During his previous four years, Rose missed 210 games, but this season he’s played all but seven games. A welcome sight for all NBA fans. Coming back from multiple injuries has been tough for Derrick Rose, however, and by and large, he’s failed to be efficient during the times he has played.

For the season, Rose is averaging just 0.93 Points per Shot, ranking him 308th among 321 qualified players. Ninety-seven players are averaging 0.19 Points per Chance or more, and Rose ranks last in efficiency among those players, making him the least effective volume scorer in the NBA.

A big part of the problem is that Rose never gets to the foul line anymore. For the season, Rose is averaging 3.2 free throw attempts per game. Terrible, considering the best skill Rose is supposed to have is getting to the foul line. Rose’s free throw rate of 18.3 percent ranks him 296th in the league. Every time Rose has the opportunity to avoid contact at the basket by pulling up for a tough floater or throwing up a difficult layup, he’ll do it. And it’s unlikely Rose will ever feel comfortable again getting to the foul line. Even during his MVP season, getting to the foul line was a slight problem for Rose. Now, he virtually never gets there.

Teams don’t really guard Rose from behind the three-point line, yet he manages to take an inordinate amount of contested shots from there because of his bad habit of pausing for a second before shooting, or he’ll take a bad jumper straight off the dribble that’s contested with plenty of time on the shot clock for no reason. Rose doesn’t shoot often enough in rhythm and immediately off the catch. This season, Rose has made just 24.0 percent of his three-pointers, even though he’s taking over two per game.

Even though he’s a pretty miserable outside shooter, there are some fun elements to Rose’s shooting. He’s a true jump shooter, with an emphasis on “jump.” Rose probably jumps higher on his shot than any player. The only player comparable to him is Russell Westbrook.

There is, however, one exception where Rose becomes a solid jump shooter.

Rose has a really flat shot and doesn’t get match arc, which is a big reason for many of his misses. But when he takes jumpers off the glass, much of that disadvantage is negated.

Rose ranks first on the season in total point scored with jumpers made off the glass, having scored 54 points total on those shots. No one else has scored over 30 points, and tied for second are DeMar DeRozan and Gordon Hayward with 26 points each. On bank shot jumpers, Rose is shooting 49.1 percent from the field, which is superbly efficient compared to his typical shooting.

It may not sound like much, but Rose’s ability to make long shots off the glass isn’t a completely inconsequential skill. Most teams are focused on forcing teams to the baseline off pick-and-rolls, and a “no middle” philosophy in NBA defenses is generally prevalent. Funnily enough, this forces Rose into shots that he can actually make at a high rate, whereas in the middle of the floor Rose is a terrible jump shooter. It’s a relative niche and a strange benefit to have, but considering the Bulls have won just 5 of their past 18 games, they should use every advantage they can get.