Bogdan Bogdanovic more effective coming off the Hawks bench
Bogdan Bogdanovic has played just under 300 NBA games since joining in 2017, including 151 as a starter. In other words, whether in Sacramento or Atlanta, he has become accustomed to regularly moving from the major five to his team’s bench. This season with the Hawks, he played his first 20 games alongside Trae Young and the other starters. With a mixed result of barely 12 points on average.
On his return at the end of January, after several weeks of back and forth with the infirmary (knee, ankle), Nate McMillan preferred to keep his confidence in Kevin Huerter who had recovered the vacant position.
A paid formula according to the coach who appreciates » aggressiveness from Serbian. » Playing with the second five allows him to have a little more control of the ball. By taking him off the bench, we were able to highlight him “Judges the former technician of the Pacers.
Whether he starts or not has little impact on his average playing time (about 29 minutes). As a substitute, Bogdan Bogdanovic however scores more (16 points against 12.2 as a starter) with better skill. On his last 14 outings, he has averaged 17 points (47% on shots including 41% from 3-pointers), 4 rebounds and 4 assists. In February, only Tyler Herro did better than him in the league in « scoring » from the bench.
More the ball in hand
The interested party also notices that by not starting, he plays more “pick-and-roll”. » I play more with the ball, not just without it. In my career, I’ve only ever been a shooter, so that’s better. »
Earlier in the season, he said he never really cared about this starter / substitute status. Priority to victory. « If the coach thinks it can win us the game, then I’ll do whatever it takes “, formulated the former player of the Kings, evoking however a notion of “ sacrifice « .
Last year, Bogdan Bogdanovic had already experienced a personal rise in power which had participated in the recovery of the Hawks. After the All-Star Game, he had thus turned to 19 points on average, against 9 previously. But the adjustment of his role in the team had been done in the opposite direction: the rear had started on the bench before being propelled into the major five.
It doesn’t matter in the end because as Danilo Gallinari, in a situation similar to his, sums it up well, Bogdan Bogdanovic remains » a super striker so we know that once in play, we have to play on him. We know that the more he has the ball in his hand, the more chances there are that good things will happen. »