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How concerning are Hassan Whiteside's free throws?

This is a case where form and function aren't aligned.

Hassan Whiteside's form at the line appears fine. He doesn't have a pronounced hitch, and his release point seems consistent with proper rotation. Nor is he the type of player to overthink things. So it's odd that he's gone through stretches in which he's struggled so much with his free throws. 

Saturday night against Houston was another such stretch. After making 5-of-7 during the scrimmage, he missed all nine against the Rockets. All nine. You'd think he would have made one by accident. 

While he made just 12-of-27 for Sacramento in 2011-12 -- before he spent the next two seasons out of the NBA -- he was a semi-respectable 255-of-414 last season, which equates to 62.8 percent. That's not ideal, but that's not all that destructive, especially with good free throws such as Goran Dragic and Chris Bosh in the starting lineup. 

Missing all nine, though? Problem. Major problem.

What's even more strange about this is that Whiteside has been feeling better about his free throws than he ever has. He told us on 790 The Ticket that, with his hand healed after a severe laceration late last season, "I expect the free throws and the jumpshot percentage to go way high."

He added: "I think I'm gonna shoot like around 75, or 75 or above, or at least over 70. That's really a goal for me. Pat Riley kind of was the first person to say, 'I think that should be one of your goals for this year.' And I really worked on it a lot."

Clearly it needs more work. 

Or the Heat will be working harder than they should on offense. 




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