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NBA Christmas: 1 Thing the Spurs Can Learn From Every Matchup

San Antonio Spurs Dejounte Murray, Derrick White, Lonnie Walker
San Antonio Spurs Dejounte Murray, Derrick White, Lonnie Walker / Ronald Cortes/GettyImages
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Utah Jazz reliance on threes a polar opposite of the San Antonio Spurs

You don't have to be a mathematical genius to figure out how the Utah Jazz have built the most dangerous offense in the NBA today. They average 115.4 points per game and any basketball fan with access to Basketball Reference and a calculator should be able to tell you how they got there.

The Jazz hunt threes. They currently taking 49 percent of their field goal attempts from behind the arc, easily the highest percentage in the league. They don't take the top spot in three-point accuracy, (they're fifth in that metric), but when you take nearly 43 three-point attempts per game and hit on almost 37 percent of them, you've got the makings of a pretty lethal offense.

Let's contrast that with the Spurs. San Antonio ranks dead last in three-point attempts per game, putting up just under 30 per contest. In terms of accuracy, they're right in the middle of the pack, averaging a respectable but not overly impressive 35 percent from behind the arc as a team.

We've pounded this drum for years now but would it kill Gregg Popovich and the guys to start hunting threes a little bit more aggressively? I know this isn't how they do things, but when the rest of the league is firing away from deep, you're going to get left behind if you don't at least make an effort to ramp up your attempts from behind the arc.

It's not as if the Spurs are lack shooters either. Keldon Johnson, Bryn Forbes, and Doug McDermott all average nearly 40 percent from deep or better. It's about attempts.

One route to increasing their three-point attempts could be an increase in playing time for Jock Landale. Spurs Twitter loves to complain about a lack of playing time for the guys at the end of the bench but there's a real argument for Landale getting more run.

When Landale checked into the game against the Clippers earlier this week it didn't take long for him to make an impact. He quickly knocked down two threes, displaying the same quick, high release that had Spurs advocating for an increase in his playing time for weeks now.

It's not hard to understand both sides of the argument here. Yes, Landale did need time to get acclimated to the NBA, he also had a concussion that kept him sidelined for a while. At the same time, he remains an underutilized asset that the Spurs could lean on to help close the 13 three-point attempts per game gap between themselves and the Jazz.

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The Spurs don't need to completely flip the script and copy the Jazz play for play. But pushing their shooters to shoot more while also increasing playing time for the lone stretch big on the team could go a long way to improving their overall offensive efficiency. Let's see if that happens over the coming weeks or if the Spurs stick to their ways.

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