A quick look at Kevin Huerter of the Atlanta Hawks reacting to being classified as simply a deadeye three-point shooter.
When the Atlanta Hawks took Kevin Huerter out of Maryland in the 2018 NBA Draft, the natural inclination for many pundits (both lazy and industrious) was to compare Trae Young and Huerter to recently re-signed Hawks General Manager Travis Schlenk’s previous selections of Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson with the Warriors.
Famously, Schlenk was present for the drafting of all three of that team’s franchise foundations, and many believed Schlenk to be recreating his success with two players that were believed to be among the best shooters in last year’s draft class.
Fast-forward one year and both rookies performed extremely well in their rookie seasons, with Young finishing second in Rookie of the Year and landing on the All-Rookie First Team unanimously and Huerter nabbing an All-Rookie Second Team spot.
Anyone who watched Huerter play last season would’ve seen a varied skill set that includes much more than just his incredible shooting, which, indeed, is just as good as advertised.
However, Huerter had some of the best advanced metrics on the Atlanta Hawks last year, including the team’s second-highest efficiency differential per Cleaning the Glass – meaning the Hawks scored 6.6 more points per 100 possessions with Huerter on the court than without him – underscoring Huerter’s all-around impact to the team’s success.
In a far-reaching interview with Alex Kennedy of HoopsHype, Huerter detailed why he believes himself to be more than just a three-point marksman:
“As a player, I want to be more of a complete package rather than just being known as a three-point shooter. Coming out of college, I got the Kyle Korver and JJ Redick comparisons pretty quickly. Those guys are unbelievable, but, for me, I’m looking more toward guys like Bradley Beal and Gordon Hayward and Klay Thompson since those guys do a little bit more off-the-dribble than Kyle and JJ and they have more of a complete game.”
As you can see, Huerter is setting the bar high for his game, which is good to see after his promising rookie campaign.
Who knows what next year will bring, but Red Pepper’s future in the NBA is certainly bright.