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Blazers Must Hope for Internal Shooting Growth at the Wing

Dan Favale of Bleacher Report still sees a need for wing shooting after Portland’s moves this summer.

NBA: Portland Trail Blazers at Los Angeles Lakers Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

Heading into the offseason, a player like Omri Casspi was theorized as a Portland Trail Blazers target as he fit a need (wing shooting) and was expected to come cheap (important for a cash-strapped team). Additions like Nik Stauskas in NBA Free Agency and Anfernee Simons and Gary Trent Jr. in the NBA Draft, none of whom are taller than 6-foot-6, still leaves a need for wing shooting, says Dan Favale of Bleacher Report:

Moe Harkless is downing 37.5 percent of threes over the past two seasons, but that’s on barely three attempts per 36 minutes. Evan Turner’s long-range touch has far from corrected itself. Trotting out Nik Stauskas at the 3 (or 4) is a good way for head coach Terry Stotts to get himself fired.

Jake Layman cannot be considered the guy until he clears 500 career minutes. Anfernee Simons enters the NBA with questionable shot selection and a 6’4”, 183-pound frame that must bulk up before he can tackle taller wing assignments.

Gary Trent Jr., the No. 37 pick in June’s draft, had the greenest of lights at Duke. Maybe he can crack the rotation. But he’s not explosive enough to play too far up.

Favale highlights Portland’s wing corps as unfavorable, relying on players either playing out of positon or not established enough as shooters to warrant big minutes.

Brian Freeman here at Blazer’s Edge recently broke down Portland’s wing rotation and how they might take an unconventional approach next season in terms of lineups. You can read it here.