Kemba Walker’s pull up jumpers in transition
Earlier, we talked about how good Walker is at getting to the rim (See here). Tonight, we talked about a few crucial points in defending in transition (here). What you will see is that Notre Dame actually plays decent defense in transition, as they get back to the paint and get in front of Walker but they need to give him a little space so he does not beat them off the dribble.
Walker takes advantage of this as he uses the space to pull up for a midrange jump shot. He did this three times tonight, let’s watch.
As you see in the first clip, the Notre Dame defender has locked in on Walker and is backpedaling to protect the basket. Once he gets to the paint, he should probably stop backpedaling and step up and try to cut off Walker. However, since Walker is so great at getting to the basket, he keeps moving back.
Walker recognizes this and pulls up at the foul line and hits the jumper before the defender can react. This is a tough shot to hit on the run but Walker shows he has little trouble with it.
Again, Notre Dame is in decent position to guard in transition. Hansbrough has his eyes on Walker and is working to contain him. Walker gives him a little hesitation like he is setting up to drive by him before pulling up at the foul line to knock down another jump shot.
The final clip is similar to the other two but shows the regularity with which Walker can hit this foul line jumper. Notre Dame has 4 players in the paint but the on ball defender keeps backpedaling to cut off penetration. Walker sees this again and calmly strokes a third foul line jump shot in transition.
Notre Dame was probably right in cutting off lanes to the rim for Walker, especially in transition. Walker countered that by pulling up at the foul line and knocking down the mid range shot before the defense had time to recover. That is why he is one of the top scorers in the country.