FanPost

Has SHAQ's Free Throw Shooting Improved?

Despite a lot of hopeful discussions on the topic (EDIT: and here too ) and SHAQ's 65% shooting for the month of March, the short answer is, NO and at best, NOT YET.

But that's only because 110 free throws in March are not enough to compare to the rest of Shaq's season or career.  

Now, if you're a BRIGHT SIDE of the SUNS kind of person (like me!), ready to look at the trend and say, "SHAQ's gonna make 65%!", I refer you to the fool's gold of 2001:

By Dennis Hans
Posted Wednesday, May 2, 2001, at 3:00 AM ET

In the final game of the regular season, Shaquille O'Neal converted all 13 of his free-throw attempts. That performance was the culmination of a 16-game stretch where Shaq drained 166 of 245 free throws, or 67.8 percent. On average, he stepped to the stripe 15 times per game and knocked down 10, which is exactly what he did in the first game of the playoffs--not bad for a career 53-percent free-throw shooter who had plummeted to 40 percent earlier this season.

...

Shaq owes that dramatic improvement to legendary Aussie Olympian sharpshooter and instructor Ed Palubinskas, who played for LSU, Shaq's alma mater, in the 1970s. Assuming the cure is permanent...

...

As for Shaq, he still doesn't have the most graceful or rhythmic delivery on the planet. In effect, he does in two steps what most good shooters do in one. Virtually all good shooters have a synchronized, arms-come-up-as-knees-bend-down release. But the Palubinskas-Shaq method has produced a crisp, compact release that works.

...

Shaq's success has exposed a host of critics and rationalizers—including Shaq himself—as clueless. The guy has always had what it takes to be respectable from the charity stripe. He just needed the right instructor.

LOL.

Check out the rest of the SLATE article on top 8 excuses explanations why SHAQ shoots a low percentage.  

If you're thinking SHAQ shoots a better percentage in the playoffs, then think again.  On his career, he was 52.5% in season and 51.5% in the playoffs.  Indeed, Miami won a title with SHAQ shooting 68 for 182 (37.4%)!!




Here is SHAQ's game by game shooting percentage.

Here is SHAQ's Makes, Attempts and Percentage by month.

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