Is Kyle Korver Getting a Free Pass?

Is Kyle Korver Getting a Free Pass?
Is Kyle Korver Getting a Free Pass?

While the timing of this article may seem odd considering Chicago Bulls forward Kyle Korver’s performance Monday against the Washington Wizards, I do not want a single game to cloud the big picture.

Korver has played poorly for the Bulls this season.

While Carlos Boozer gets much of the criticism (and justifiably so) very few people seem to be looking at Korver and his lack of performance off the bench.

Of course, expectations for Boozer were much higher as a starter and the Bulls big free-agent splash last offseason, but Korver came with expectations as well.

Those expectations were not 20 points and 15 rebounds every night that Boozer had but they certainly were more than 6.5 points per game and 42 percent from beyond the arc.

This is not a fluke either; Korver struggled last season as well.

He was able to increase his points per game from 7.2 as a member of the Utah Jazz in 2009-10 to 8.3 last season; but he did so at a much less efficient rate.

Korver shot a stunning 53 percent from the three-point line with the Jazz and while that percentage was unsustainable, a plummet to 41 percent should not have happened.

Over 69 percent of Korver’s total shot attempts are threes, which is not an issue given Korver’s skill set. Regardless, he has to be more efficient from the outside.

Korver severely lacks options to his offensive game. He cannot dribble, cannot penetrate and struggles ever creating his own shot.

If his initial look breaks down, Korver has trouble passing out of tight defenses or finding another option on the floor.

Where I believe Korver struggles most is defensively.

This was especially evident Sunday against the Miami Heat as Korver blew multiple assignments leading directly to big shots by Heat guard Mike Miller.

For a fanbase so eager to crucify Boozer for his lack of defensive prowess (again justifiably so), Korver seems to get a free pass.

Korver routinely struggles moving his feet, too often playing defense with his arms and has issues battling through screens, especially backdoor.

I do not expect Korver to be a defensive stopper like Luol Deng or Ronnie Brewer, but his defensive breakdowns are just as galling as Boozer’s. I would like to see both of them take a more serious approach to that end of the floor.

I have faith that Korver can be a valuable asset to the Bulls. His performance Monday night showed just what he is capable of when hitting shots at a high percentage.

Despite these solid performances as of late, I can help but be somewhat disappointing by what Korver has given the Bulls this season.

6 thoughts on “Is Kyle Korver Getting a Free Pass?

  • January 31, 2012 at 9:58 AM

    That is what you get from Korver.
    He was brought in to hit three’s.He is not a defensive player, a dribbler or a rebounding fanatic.
    Her makes threes and he has done that with proficiency.
    He is not like Kerr who just stood around waiting for Jordan to do all the work, he actually is running all over the court to get free. He is tired at the end of the day.

  • January 31, 2012 at 1:35 PM

    Terrible article. All of this was known from the start. He stepped up when he had too when Rose and Watson were out. Also, he did not shoot with a great percentage last night either… 5/12 from threes that’s about 42%

  • January 31, 2012 at 3:57 PM

    I agree with Ed. Korver is in the game to hit big shots, which he has. And to keep a 3 pt percentage of 50% or higher is quite the expectation. Although he isn’t the best all around player, you can’t complain about him not hustling.

  • January 31, 2012 at 4:35 PM

    Even though I never played basketball at a big level I do understand why Korver struggles sometimes and its not his fault. As a shooter you need playing time. Its really hard to warm up for 30 minutes, Then sit for 15 minutes then be expected to make shots. If you have noticed against Washington and the Bucks, Korver started and he hit shoots. If you want him to produce you have to play him more.

  • January 31, 2012 at 8:30 PM

    again,enuf w/ the boozer criticism (justifiably sucks) sam smith already explained it well, on what do we expect from boozer? rose should trust his teammates more during those late and crucial plays (especially him being double team) so sick of blaming boozer,give him a break for god sake! boozer carried the bulls in a lot of nights scoring/rebounding wise!

  • February 1, 2012 at 5:36 PM

    To answer the highlighted by you article. No. Kyle Korver is not getting a free pass because in many games he has stepped up when needed. Yes, at times he goes on a slump and struggles to find his shot (like sometime in last season and last in playoffs). Korver, though, has been a productive guys when he is on a roll. Forty-two percent from the 3pt line is not his greatest, but is the best on the team. Whenever Korver has started he has given valuable minutes and produces around the same points as Rip. His defense is not great, everyone knows that, but even recently he has been playing better defense (and he always hustles). Your point about his lack of defense in the heat game was bad, mainly because that was probably his best defensive game in a while. He was ripping down rebounds (5 total), playing in the paint, and even had a steal. At another point in this season there was a stretch when Kyle was shooting 60%, YES 60% from the 3pt line. Even after his 5/12 3pt shooting night on Monday, Korver admitted that his still feels his shot isn’t quite there just yet. Tonight Kyle goes back to the place he started, and I hope he will have another fabulous night.

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