Over the course of the offseason, Buckets Over Broadway will be doing year-end report cards of the New York Knicks roster. The roster experienced a decent amount of overhaul this season, so we’ll simply be covering the core players of the 2012-13 team. Players will be analyzed by their offense, defense, and overall contributions throughout the season. Next up is Iman Shumpert.
Offense: Iman Shumpert didn’t make his season debut until January 17 in London against the Detroit Pistons and started 45 games with mixed results. It took Shump a little over two months to adjust to coming off major knee surgery and it showed in a big way.
Until mid-March, Shumpert shot 34 percent from the field, 37 percent from three-point range and 65 percent from the stripe, equating to fewer than six points per game in nearly 21 minutes. In Mike Woodson’s system, his wing players are mostly spotting up in the corner for open threes. That’s not Shumpert’s game at all. We saw very little cutting to the basket and driving off the dribble which is Shumpert’s biggest strength. Never before was he considered a three-point threat, but that’s how Woodson used him.
However something happened to Shump after St. Patrick’s Day. He started to gain his confidence and explosiveness back and more resembled the player Knicks’ fans remembered as a rookie.
Over the season’s final month, Shumpert shot 47 percent from the field and 44 percent from three, without missing a single free throw, while seeing his minutes bumped from 21 to 24.
However the overall numbers weren’t pretty as Shumpert averaged only 6.8 points and 3.0 rebounds per game while shooting only 39 percent from the floor and 40 percent from behind the arc. There were factors that led to his bad numbers but the overall body of work really wasn’t very good. Grade: C-
Defense: Similar to his offensive performance, it took Shump a while to get into a groove defensively. He didn’t rebound well and averaged less than a steal per game. Until the last month of the season he did very little at either end of the court to help the Knicks win games.
However similar to his offense, his defense really picked up the last month of the season and by the end of the year he not only looked like the same old Shump, but possibly an even better version of himself. Grade: B+
Overall Grade: It’s hard to give Shump a fair grade based on him only playing a half of a season and then taking a while to get adjusted to being back on the floor. That being said, by the end of the postseason he showed signs of being the Knicks best two-way player. However you have to look at the entire body of work and overall it was just a little bit better than average. Grade: C+
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