Phoenix Suns point guard Eric Bledsoe gets to the rim as well or better than any NBA guard, but AZCentral.com reported that Coach Jeff Hornacek has encouraged the former University of Kentucky star to work on his mid-range game.
Bledsoe's ability to get the basket often prompts defenders to choose to leave him open for jump shots.
AZCentral.com reported that less than one-fifth of Bledsoe's shots last season came in the 16- to 24-foot range. And he only took 72 shots in the 8- to 16-foot range last year.
"I see a lot of Kevin Johnson in his strength and ability to get to the basket," said Hornacek, who played with Johnson in Phoenix. "If you can come down full bore and hit the pull-up jumper from anywhere between 15 and 20 feet, teams are going to just be back there going, 'What the heck do I do?' You can't just lay back and play the drive because then he just kills you with the jumper."
Bledsoe told the news organization that his focus during the summer was on conditioning so he legs would be stronger later in games.
"He's been telling me since I came here and he got here that a lot of players he played with perfected that mid-range shot," Bledsoe said. "He wanted me to take that a lot more and just go hard while doing it."