We are a full week into November, which means the weather is starting to turn and the NBA season is getting into full swing. In today’s edition of “Notable Numbers,” we check in on a few players that are heating up and others that are ice cold.
* 19.6 percent
Klay Thompson has been arguably the NBA’s second best long-distance shooter the past few seasons. He’s finished with the second most made 3-pointers in three consecutive years, dating back to 2013-14. He has made an average of 246 three-pointers per season over that stretch. His backcourt mate, Stephen Curry, is the only player in the league to knock down more triples. Just as impressively, Thompson has also finished in the top-10 in 3-point percentage each of those three seasons. In fact, Klay has never shot below 40 percent from downtown over a full NBA season in his entire career. Through six games this season, however, Thompson has yet to locate his stroke.
Klay is just 9-of-46 from behind-the-arc in 2016-17. That equates to a chilly 19.6 percent. Thompson is averaging just 1.5 three-pointers per game, which is the same per-game average as Joel Embiid and Marc Gasol. The following players are averaging more 3-pointers per contest than Klay: Frank Kaminsky, Rashad Vaughn, Tyler Johnson, and Karl-Anthony Towns. We can only assume this is a temporary slump for Thompson and that his numbers will normalize once he finds his shot and gets comfortable playing alongside Kevin Durant.
* 20/10 in under 25 minutes
Enes Kanter had to have felt embarrassed on Thursday night. Not only did his OKC Thunder get dominated by the Warriors, but Kanter got into a heated exchange with Kevin Durant during the third quarter from the bench. Durant ultimately had the final say and the last laugh, primarily because Kanter rarely came off the aforementioned bench. Kanter played just three minutes, and was still somehow minus-11 during that short stretch.
Well, Kanter was out for revenge on Saturday night and made the Timberwolves pay. He scored 20 points and grabbed 10 rebounds in 20 minutes of the Thunder's victory in Oklahoma City. According to the Elias Sports Bureau, it was the third time this calendar year that Kanter had at least 20 points and 10 rebounds while playing less than 25 minutes; he also did that on January 27 at Minnesota and March 26 versus San Antonio. Before 2016, no Sonics/Thunder player had done that since Shawn Kemp, on February 15, 1994 against the 76ers in Seattle.
* 10 in 172
Dwyane Wade is one of the game’s all-time greatest shooting guards. However, unlike Klay Thompson, D Wade has never been known for his 3-point marksmanship. Coming into this season, that was one of the concerns in Chicago, as neither Wade, Rajon Rondo or Jimmy Butler are prolific 3-point shooters. How would the Bulls be able to stretch the floor and create space offensively if none of their three primary offensive weapons could keep defenses honest from downtown?
Well, Wade has taken matters into his own hands this season. Defenders have been daring Wade to shoot from deep, and he accepted that challenge. D Wade is shooting 47.6 percent from 3-point territory through Chicago’s first six games. He has made 10 3-pointers in 172 minutes this season. To put that in context, Wade made a grand total seven 3-pointers in the 2,258 minutes he played last season, while shooting 15.9 percent from downtown.
* 33 points at 52 percent
DeMar DeRozan scored “just” 23 points on Sunday night. This was notable because it was the first game all season he scored fewer than 32 points. DeRozan had become only the fifth player over the last 50 years to score at least 30 points in each of his team’s first five games of the season.
Still, DeRozan is averaging a robust, league-leading 33.7 points per game this year. He is also shooting a stellar 52.4% from the field. If DeRozan can somehow manage to keep up this incredible pace, he would join truly elite company. Per BasketballRefeence.com, only four players in NBA history have averaged over 33 points per game and also posted a field goal percentage north of 52 percent over an entire season. The complete list: Wilt Chamberlain (three times), Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (once), George Gervin (once), and Michael Jordan (twice)
* 20 boards 30 times
Andre Drummond pulled down 20 rebounds in the Pistons victory over the Nuggets on Saturday. Remarkably, it was the 30th game in his career in which he’s grabbed at least 20 boards. Dating back to the 1983-84 season, Drummond (who won’t turn 24 years old until next August), has the second most 20-rebound games of all NBA players prior to their 24th birthday. Dwight Howard has the most such games (33). Kevin Love is third, behind Drummond, with 17. Charles Barkley and Shaquille O’Neal round out the top-five, with 16 and 14 such games, respectively.