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Brandon Jennings says he has lost confidence in his shot… but he’s still shooting

Nov 24, 2013, 2:01 PM EDT

Brandon Jennings Getty Images

The Detroit Pistons need floor spacing and Brandon Jennings is not providing it.

He was 4-of-16 shooting with four turnovers in the Pistons loss Friday night, and in his last five games Jennings is shooting just 35.5 percent. On the season he is struggling to finish (hitting just 44.9 percent in the restricted area), struggling from the midrange (34.9 percent) and not hitting from three (30.6 percent). He’s only averaged 1.2 free throws a game his last five games.

That’s not stopping him — he has averaged 15.2 shots per game the last five games. He’s still shooting, just not making. Somewhere Bucks fans are just nodding their heads.

Jennings knows he is off and told the Detroit Free Press it’s about confidence.

“I think that’s why my shot isn’t where it is right now,” he said. “I don’t have any confidence in my shot right now. That’s the reason I’m missing, because there’s just no confidence there….

“I’m just out there thinking too much when I’m playing,” he said. “I feel like I’m playing to prove everybody that I can be this fast for a point guard instead of just playing basketball.”

Jennings is still the Pistons leading per-game scorer on the season (15.9 points per game), but when you are shooting that low a percentage you drag the team offense down.

Thing is, Detroit doesn’t have a lot of other options.

Mo Cheeks has tried to change things up by bringing Josh Smith off the bench and starting Kyle Singler, and Singler shot 9-of-13 for 22 points in that role in a loss to the Hawks. However Smith was 0-7 off the bench.

In the end Detroit needs a lot more and better out of Brandon Jennings, but this kind of inefficient shooter is who he is — but this season is worse than normal. If he can get up to his career averages (a career true shooting percentage of 49.6 percent, it is just 44.9 this season) it would help.

  1. metrocritical - Nov 24, 2013 at 2:18 PM

    Joe Dumars desperately rolled the dice in acquiring Josh Smith and Brandon Jennings this past off season, against common notions regarding individual performance and team chemistry. He also hired a retread coach with no track record for achieving excellence. What we are watching so far in Detroit (when we can stomach to watch them) is what happens when a misfit roster is paired with a nothing head coach. One can only wonder if owner Tom Gores is watching and if he has the gumption to do anything about it.

    • patsfan92 - Nov 26, 2013 at 3:56 PM

      joe dumars went downhill when he traded Billups for AI. he f***ed the franchise with that move. hasnt been the same since

  2. spthegr8 - Nov 24, 2013 at 2:33 PM

    ” But he is still shooting”………. SHOCKER!!!!!

  3. m4a188 - Nov 24, 2013 at 2:35 PM

    When you nod you head you approve of something, you meant to say they were shaking their heads.

    • davidly - Nov 24, 2013 at 2:45 PM

      I’m pretty sure that he meant that the Bucks fans were nodding in affirmation, as if saying, ‘We know how you feel.’ Conversely, if they’d be shaking their heads if he were still in a Bucks uni.

      • fm31970 - Nov 24, 2013 at 8:06 PM

        Hate to sound like a spiteful Bucks fan, but yeah, we are glad he’s gone from Milwaukee. The guy peaked already, and he doesn’t seem to be improving his game nor his shooting at all, and really, why should he? If a team like the Pistons is willing to sign him and extend his contract for millions, there is no incentive to improve.

        This whole situation in Detroit sounds a lot like the owner is making the final decisions, and Dumars is keeping quiet and going along with it, out of fear for losing his job as GM. It’s a no win situation for everyone. Who didn’t already know Josh Smith is a horrible shooter? Add Jennings (another bad shooter) and you have trouble. Sorry, everyone saw this one coming.

  4. oasis511 - Nov 24, 2013 at 3:17 PM

    The thing about Jennings is you can add up his points and points produced from assists each game, and then compare it to his possessions used, and it rarely ever comes out as a positive.

    Nov. 22 – 16 shots + 14 assists + 5 turnovers = 35 possessions
    8 points + 28 points from assists = 36 points produced

    Nov. 20 – 21 shots + 6 assists + 4 turnovers = 31 possessions
    21 points + 12 points from assists = 33 points produced

    Except for those rare nights when he gets hot, Jennings’ teams pretty much break even or fall behind with him on the court. He’s one of the most overrated players in the league, and frankly, I’m glad to see him finally getting exposed. You can’t use the “he has no one to pass to” excuse anymore.

  5. antistratfordian - Nov 24, 2013 at 3:29 PM

    He is averaging a career high in assists (7.8) – so at least he’s passing. It’s not all bad.

  6. sportsfan18 - Nov 24, 2013 at 4:52 PM

    He never had a shot!

    His career FG% is LESS than 40%. 3 of his 4 seasons in the league his FG% has been BELOW 40% and it’s below 40% so far this season.

    His lone season above 40% was only a .418% so he only rounds up to 42% that one yr.

    If he keeps shooting the way he is, the better baseball hitters will have batting averages higher than his FG%.

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