OKC Thunder: 3 goals for Darius Bazley this offseason

Darius Bazley #7 of the OKC Thunder . (Photo by Nic Antaya/Getty Images)
Darius Bazley #7 of the OKC Thunder . (Photo by Nic Antaya/Getty Images) /
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OKC Thunder
Darius Bazley. OKC Thunder. Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports /

The OKC Thunder and Darius Bazley have had an interesting year, to say the least. Baze played 55 games for Oklahoma City this season but battled injuries frequently.

During his sophomore season, Baze started all 55 of these contests and showed the ability to look for his shot, to his detriment at times.

According to basketball reference, Baze averaged seven more shot attempts per contest this season while nearly averaging the same field goal percentage.

During the 2019-20 campaign, he averaged 39 percent from the field as opposed to 40 percent this season.

This finding is somewhat concerning due to the shot attempts, but I would also like to give Darius the benefit of the doubt from a lack of continuity this season as well as being in and out of the rotation so frequently due to injuries.

His 3-point attempts went up drastically, however, he is averaging nearly the same amount of triples made this year as opposed to last season.

Baze took around 2.3 shots on 0.8 makes from long-distance during the 2019-20 campaign. This season, he averaged a whopping 5.2 attempts per game and connected on those attempts 1.5 times.

Let’s dive into a few areas where Darius can improve this offseason.

OKC Thunder goal No. 1) Consistency

A significant issue with Bazley and his critics this season was his inability to bring the same energy from game to game. There were many instances where he would show up lethargic and miss defensive assignments or even take defensive plays off.

Moreover, I noticed that if Darius is not getting involved relatively close to tip-off, it seems like there is no structure or flow to his game. He needs to be more aggressive, or his counterparts need to look to get him the ball earlier in the contest.

The most glaring part of Baze’s game that is somewhat frustrating is his attitude. He seems to have somewhat of a short temper in certain situations with Mark Daigneault, and I sometimes wonder if this bleeds over to the court with his relationship with other players.

Either way, I look for Bazley to be much more consistent during his third season with the OKC Thunder.