Name: Dorell Wright
Last Week’s Stats: 7.5 PPG, 55.6 3PT%
Throughout the first quarter of the 2013-14 NBA season, Dorell Wright has been relatively quiet for the Portland Trail Blazers. He’s averaging 5.5 points and is shooting 39.5 percent from behind the arc, but he hasn’t been the volume shooter some expected him to be from behind the arc.
Off the bench, Dorell Wright rarely earns recognition as a key contributor, but one game changed that during Week 7.
When the Blazers faced off against the Philadelphia 76ers, they set a franchise record for three-pointers made in a single contest. The team from the Northwest knocked down an incredible 21 on the road, and Wright was a big reason why.
The 28-year-old made his homecoming against Philly (he played one season their last year) one to remember. He knocked down five of the team’s long-range shots (nearly a quarter of them, to be exact), and he helped spread the floor every possession he was in the game.
What’s even more impressive than the number of threes made is the number of threes missed. The forward shot 100 percent from distance, scoring all 15 of his points in just 11 minutes.
He even managed to make the play of the game, hitting a contested buzzer beater to put the team at 40 points scored in the third quarter.
The Philly game aside, Wright has looked extremely consistent over the past week. He surely hasn’t been the best player on the roster — that honor belongs to LaMarcus Aldridge and nobody else — but he’s a big reason the team is second in three-point shooting percentage behind only the Golden State Warriors.
To Wright’s credit, he’s made plays all season long that have come in different forms. For instance, take his put-back slam against the Denver Nuggets. He showed that he’s not just a one-trick pony; although if he’s going to make a name for himself in Rip City, it’s going to be behind the three-point line and not anywhere else.
For Wright moving forward, expectations must be tempered. He’s not a Ray Allen-type playmaker, but the nice part for Portland is that he doesn’t have to be.
The Blazers are a deadly three-point team as is, and if he keeps doing what he’s doing, he’ll be an integral part of a well-established offense.