Through the first 18 games of his career, Scottie Barnes took 19 threes and knocked down five of them. Over his past three games, he’s taken 21 long balls and connected on ten. Reportedly, that shift is partly the result of Toronto Raptors head coach Nick Nurse encouraging the tantalizing rookie to let it fly from deep more often.
As Fred VanVleet views that dynamic, Barnes’ willingness to heed said advice indicates Barnes possesses the most important traits for improvement.
“I think it just speaks to being accountable and being coachable, and that’s part of the thing that you don’t really talk about a lot,” he said. “We are very pampered, spoiled guys and we make a lot of money, and everybody in our world is telling us how great we are, but sometimes, you gotta have people to tell you the truth and you’ve gotta be able to accept that.”
“Whether that’s Nick pulling him after he threw a crazy behind-the-back pass or telling to shoot more, he steps up and he looks like he’s been shooting all his life. … Being accountable and being coachable, and that’s the best way to improve.”
Fred VanVleet: "We are very pampered, spoiled guys, and we make a lot of money, and everybody in our world is telling us how great we are. But sometimes you gotta have people to tell you the truth, and you've gotta be able to accept that." (via @raptors) pic.twitter.com/sDLjUdeGoT
— Dime (@DimeUPROXX) December 3, 2021
VanVleet’s growth curve during his NBA tenure is starkly impressive, so clearly, he’s well-versed in what’s required to improve in this league and with the Raptors organization. Barnes is off to a tremendous start in his career and looks as though he’s already adding parts to his game and is receptive to coaching to become even better.