San Antonio Spurs’ long-range shooting specialist Patty Mills is in excellent position to leave his mark on the franchise record book during the 2015-16 NBA season.
When the team signed him back in March 2012, few expected the Australian point guard to impact San Antonio in a major capacity. Three years later, though, Mills can enter the top 10 in career three-point baskets by a Spurs player.
Mills is approaching Gary Neal, who knocked down 301 shots from beyond the arc throughout a three-year stretch with San Antonio. Assuming Mills stays healthy, he should eclipse Neal’s total before the end of the calendar year.
But then, Brent Barry’s 356 career three-pointers are up next—and reachable—for Mills. While he’d need 83 to pass Barry, Mills shouldn’t have trouble passing that mark, either.
Since joining the rotation on a full-time basis in 2013, Mills has averaged 1.5 triples per night. At that pace, he’ll connect on 122 long-range attempts next season. However, the Spurs’ impressive second unit makes Mills an even bigger three-point weapon.
In addition to Manu Ginobili’s craftiness on the perimeter, both Boris Diaw and David West are excellent passers from the interior. So, Mills is a threat to receive the ball from any teammate at any time from anywhere on the court.
Although Mills encountered a half-season struggle last season that nearly led to his a benching in favor of Cory Joseph, a long-term slump for Mills in 2015-16 seems unlikely. He should be given an uncontested opportunity every night, and soon enough, Mills will pass Neal and Barry.
Then, in 2016-17, Tony Parker, Chuck Person and Michael Finley are in jeopardy. Mills is coming for their spot in the record book, too.