Shooting only negative in Van Vleet rookie season
Fred Van Vleet wrapped up a solid - if inconsistent in terms of opportunity - rookie season for the Toronto Raptors.
The Rockford Auburn graduate appeared in 37 games, playing 294 minutes, scoring 107 points, grabbing 42 rebounds, with 16 steals, 3 blocked shots and 35 assists versus just 15 turnovers.
If you calculate those out per a 48-minute game then Van Vleet's numbers look like this:
Points per 48 minutes: 14.6
Rebounds per 48 minutes: 5.7
Assists per 48 minutes: 4.8
Steals per 48 minutes: 2.2
Blocked shots per 48 minutes: 0.4
Those are solid numbers anyway you look at them. The one area that needs to improve, and this has been the knock if there was one back to his high school days, is his shooting. Van Vleet shot 35.1 percent this season. He actually shot better from the 3-point line, 37.9 percent. For the 5-11 Van Vleet to find more minutes, he'll have to learn more effective ways to get his shot off amongst the trees in the NBA.
No matter the future, it was a breakout season. Van Vleet became just the fifth NIC-10 player to appear in an ABA or NBA game. Here's the list:
Fred Van Vleet, Auburn, played in NBA in 2016-2017, appearing in 37 games and scoring 107 points.
Chad Gallagher, Boylan, played in NBA in 1993-1994, appearing in two games and scoring 6 points.
Kim Hughes, Freeport, played in NBA from 1975-1981, appearing in 425 games and scoring 1,624 points.
Mark Sibley, West, played in NBA in 1973-1974, appearing in 28 games and scoring 46 points.
Skip Thoren, East, played in ABA from 1967-1970, appearing in 170 games and scoring 2,239 points. Thoren was an ABA All-Star.