Schröder's slump comes at a bad time as the playoffs start Saturday, April 15.
Yes, Dennis Schröder is only 22 years old. Sure, it's only his third season in the league. However, with career shooting lines of 42%/32%/80% (FG/3PT/FT), is it fair to wonder if he'll ever develop a reliable jumpshot?
In recent years we've seen only a handful of point guards be elite while being poor scorers. Rajon Rondo and Ricky Rubio are two point guards with top-notch court vision and other strong skills who have seen their values drop in recent seasons. John Wall's improvement at jump-shooting was extremely necessary, even with his All-Star ability to finish at the rim. Which of those three will Schröder become more like? He could be in big trouble as the point guard position has become the most loaded position in the NBA. His shooting will eventually be the difference between him being a career sixth man and a regular NBA starter.
The Recent Slump
In his past 10 games, he's been absolutely abysmal with a shooting line of 33%/21%/67%. Stretch that to his past 20 games and his FT% has been good (82%), his FG% subpar(40%), and his 3PT% pitiful (27%). Keep in mind that the 2015-16 league averages are 45%/35%/76%.
The Good News
The Atlanta Hawks are set to open the playoffs Saturday, April 16 against the Boston Celtics. In four regular season games against them this year, Schröder shot a strong line of 41%/38%/92%. If he continues shooting that way against the Celtics then there's a good chance he'll break out of this late season slump. If he continues to stink, there's a chance that Coach Mike Budenholzer will relegate him to the bench like during last season's playoffs and go with the veteran Kirk Hinrich instead.
Make or Break
If the Hawks have any chance of returning to the Eastern Conference Finals this postseason, they'll need him to be better. If Dennis Schröder wants to live up to his All-Star potential, being a better shooter will be vital.