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#pounditThursday, January 27, 2022

Gregg Popovich hates the 3-point shot, does not think it’s basketball

Gregg Popovich coaching

The San Antonio Spurs have ridden the successful 3-point shooting of guys like Danny Green, Patty Mills and Manu Ginobili to an NBA championship and hundreds of victories the past few years. In fact, when the team won the NBA title two seasons ago, they were first in the league in 3-point percentage. But just because they’ve been good from long range and had some success with it doesn’t mean head coach Gregg Popovich likes that part of basketball.

In fact, prior to his team’s game in Toronto on Wednesday night, Pop reiterated to the media that he hates the 3-pointer.

“I still hate it,” Popovich said via CBS Sports’ James Herbert. “I’ll never embrace it. I don’t think it’s basketball. I think it’s kind of like a circus sort of thing. Why don’t we have a 5-point shot? A 7-point shot? You know, where does it stop, that sort of thing. But that’s just me, that’s just old-school. To a certain degree, you better embrace it or you’re going to lose. And every time we’ve won a championship, the 3-point shot was a big part of it. Because it is so powerful and you’ve gotta be able to do it. And nobody does it better than Golden State, and you know where they’re at. So it’s important. You can’t ignore it.”

He makes a good point — where do you draw the line? So far it’s at 3-pointers, but what if the league says they want more excitement and say anything beyond half-court is worth four points?

Also, threes are such a big deal because as Pop said, nobody does it better than the Warriors. Golden State leads the league in threes attempted and made, and their collective 43.8 percent mark as a team is off the charts. How are you supposed to keep up with them when they make threes at the same clip most teams make 2-point shots? You can’t, which is why they’re 23-0.

So even though the purist in Pop doesn’t like 3-pointers, at least he knows how valuable and important they are. And unless you have a guy on your team who can make 77 straight 3-pointers when he’s shooting around, then you better do your best to figure them out, too.


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