Lonzo Ball and Markelle Fultz by almost nearly every major NBA Draft pundit, analyst, or even Twitter NBA Draft are the top 2 picks in the 2017 NBA Draft. They shot a tremendous 41% from 3 point land as freshman. They also had the dubious act of shooting below 70% from the charity stripe. So that begs the question, how well have similar players (if there are any) transitioned to the NBA who shot a fairly high volume of three pointers while having those same shooting percentages respectively from three and the charity stripe.
In looking through NBA and NCAA data I was able to find 732 players for a given set of conditions.
I decided to try to find if a player was purposely shooting three pointers and trying to find players who probably were fairly talented as I stratified the number of minimum attempts required by a freshman on through a senior year.
For “one and done” players, aka Freshman, they were required to have attempted 100 3 point fields. Sophomores were required to shoot 125, Juniors 175, and Seniors, by the time they went to NBA la la land would have need to have fired off 250.
Here’s the analysis.
If that isn’t clear or can’t be enlarged, a link to the same image can be found here.
There have been 11 such players who met my criteria out of the 732. None of them has ever matched their 3PT FG% from college. Mookie Blaylock came the closest at just 4.3% off his college mark of 37.9%. The average decrease was 8.9%. That would mean Ball and Fultz would fall around 32% if they followed the average. If they were the exceptions, they’d likely be closer to what Blaylock did and only 4.3% off their college marks, leaving them in the 36% range.
While this means it’s never been matched. But how ‘low’ off of that 41% mark they attained in college would make them viable NBA players? Given that Fultz can score on multiple levels, shooting 33% might not be so bad. But for Ball, would 33% make him a viable NBA starter?