Jabari Parker has had a fairly unusual start to his career since being selected with the No. 2 overall pick in the 2014 NBA Draft.
While the former Duke star has struggled with injuries during his first several NBA seasons, the 24-year-old has recently shown flashes of his greatness since joining the Washington Wizards. Even though he never reached his full potential during his time with the Milwaukee Bucks and Chicago Bulls, he’s been particularly productive recently.
Parker has scored 18.9 points per 36 minutes since leaving the Bulls. Better yet, Washington has outscored opponents by 4.8 points per 100 possessions when he has been on the court. In 15 games with the Wizards, Parker is shooting 56.4 percent from the field with a true shooting percentage of 62.0 percent (both of which are career-highs).
He has looked his best when using his size to his advantage as a scorer near the rim. However, his solid jump shot has helped him extend that range beyond just four feet of the rim and he’s having success on short midrange attempts as well.
Since the trade deadline, there are 76 players in the NBA who have taken at least 75 attempts within eight feet of the basket. Only three (Jarrett Allen, Derrick Favors and Anthony Davis) have been more accurate than Parker (71.3 percent) from this zone.
According to Synergy Sports, Parker has scored 1.53 points per possession on finishes near the basket that were not post-ups. He is shooting 37-for-49 (75.5 percent) on these opportunities, which trails only Golden State’s Andre Iguodala among players who have had at least 40 opportunities this season.
This even includes scoring attempts as the ballhandler in pick-and-rolls, like the one he had against the Charlotte Hornets last night (seen above). He uses his decision-making, agility and strength for an impressive finish at the rim.
But he has also been fantastic when posting up on the left block, averaging 1.23 PPP (which is in the 90th percentile among all NBA players) since joining the Wizards. In fact, he is shooting 7-for-11 (63.6 percent) on these opportunities.
Parker has always been an above-average threat when posting up against defenders. He averaged 1.06 PPP (in the 90th percentile) on post-ups when he was a freshman at Duke. In fact, he averaged 3.6 points per game on post-ups for the Blue Devils, which was the second-most of all players in the Atlantic Coast Conference.
Since making the leap to the NBA, he has finished in the 75th percentile or better on this play type every single season. It has been one of the most effective weapons in his offensive arsenal.
He’s now on his third team in as many years, but his recent success should give him a confidence boost as he continues to get acclimated in Washington.