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Houston Rockets: 3 ways for Kevin Porter Jr. to reach stardom

SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA - APRIL 10: Kevin Porter Jr. #3 of the Houston Rockets walks out on court during player introductions prior to the game against the Golden State Warriors at the Chase Center on April 10, 2021 in San Francisco, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Daniel Shirey/Getty Images)
SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA - APRIL 10: Kevin Porter Jr. #3 of the Houston Rockets walks out on court during player introductions prior to the game against the Golden State Warriors at the Chase Center on April 10, 2021 in San Francisco, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Daniel Shirey/Getty Images)
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Kevin Porter Jr. #3 of the Houston Rockets (Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images)
Kevin Porter Jr. #3 of the Houston Rockets (Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images)

Houston Rockets’ Kevin Porter path to stardom #2: The step-back jumper

The NBA has become a league that lives and dies by the 3-pointer and the step-back jumper has become the ultimate defense stretching weapon. Nearly every elite perimeter scorer has a dangerous step-back jumper that is efficient from well beyond the arc.

Kevin Porter has no hesitation about taking step-back jumpers but he leaves a lot to be desired when it comes to the consistency he shows on it. In this video, he doesn’t create much separation between him and his defender and as a result, needs to rush the shot.

https://videos.nba.com/nba/pbp/media/2021/03/16/0022000613/200/3fabfa41-dd62-81ea-efb0-7a6b1506f200_1280x720.mp4

When Porter has time to get his legs underneath him and go up in rhythm his shot looks a lot prettier. Here he notices that his defender is not locked in, takes a small step back, gathers himself under control, and sinks the shot.

https://videos.nba.com/nba/pbp/media/2021/04/14/0022000461/363/7f3b7528-e302-dc67-df48-d9724b6efc3f_1280x720.mp4

Porter needs to improve two areas of his step-back game and fortunately, they go hand in hand. The first is that he needs to create more separation when he uses the move. It’s harder to hit a shot after stepping back so the extra space created has to be worth it and he consistently does not get enough space out of the move.

Second, he needs to be more fluid and in rhythm with his shot after he creates the space. When he rushes his lower half his shot comes out flat or he misses short. When he takes the time to gather himself his shot comes out pure with a nice arc and portends a bright future as a step-back merchant.

If Porter is able to consistently create more space off of his step-back he’ll have more time to rise up and hit the shot. He needs to work hard in the offseason to get the most out of the move and gain the confidence to not rush his shot once he has the space to shoot.

Next: Path to stardom #1

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