2. Diminished skills
Llull’s best season came during the 2016-17 season, in which he averaged 16 points in both the Liga ACB and the EuroLeague tournaments. Llull won the MVP that season in both tournaments of play, which were certainly deserved.
Llull tore his ACL in the following season and simply hasn’t been the same player since. Llull’s best scoring outputs since that year have netted him 12.9 points per game, which is a considerable dropoff from the 16 points he averaged during his MVP season. In addition, Llull averaged five assists in both tournaments that year, and he has yet to even reach that number in the three years since.
We all know the Houston Rockets run the 3-point heavy offense, and it’s debatable if Llull can fit this style of play at this point of his career. Over the past two seasons, Llull has only made 32.5 percent of this 3-pointers (in both tournaments combined) which isn’t good enough to be considered a sniper.
We generally see players improve upon their scoring and shooting percentages in international ball, which makes sense considering the dropoff in competition from the NBA. In essence, this means we have to expect Llull to actually perform worse in the NBA than he’s been playing overseas, which is certainly not good.
During the most recent EuroLeague tournament, Llull averaged a mere 7.5 points per game on a measly 28.7 percent from the floor. This is obviously dismal and has to raise the question of whether Llull would even be able to contribute for the Rockets.
All in all, Llull’s scoring, facilitating, and 3-point shooting abilities have each regressed significantly in spite of an easier level of competition overseas. With this being the case, why do the Rockets even want him at this point? Furthermore, why would they want him in the future? The more he ages, the more we’ll see his skills and abilities continue to regress.
Next: No. 1