Ben’s free throws a risky, wristy proposition
Here are the first four paragraphs of my latest piece dissecting the seriously flawed free-throw form of Ben Wallace:
For four years I’ve been explaining to Ben Wallace and various coaches and executives with the Detroit Pistons that he can’t get better at the free-throw line merely through countless repetitions of his longstanding, tried-and-failed, all-wrist method. Little did I know that Ben has a chronic injury to his right wrist that makes his flawed delivery even more problematic. It’s a horrid shooting style with a healthy wrist, and it’s even worse given Ben’s condition.
More on that wrist in a minute, but first let’s consider the frightening free-throw facts.
In the regular season, Ben basically matched his career average of .418 by draining free throws (FTs) at a .416 clip. This postseason, through two rounds and 12 games, he’s 10 for 42. That’s .238.
His 0 for 7 in Game 5 vs. Cleveland was instrumental in the Pistons’ two-point loss. His 2 for 6 in Game 6 nearly cost Detroit, which squeaked by with a two-point win. Fortunately, his 0 for 4 in Game 7 was inconsequential, as the Pistons won handily.
If the Pistons’ coach and president are smart, they’ll enlist my help pronto. The season may very well hang in the balance. My advice is to act soon, before Shaq and the Heat sign me to an exclusive tutoring deal for the remainder of the postseason.