Kris Dunn didn’t need to be told that Fred Hoiberg once led the NBA in 3-point shooting by shooting 48.3 percent and shot 39.6 percent from beyond the arc during his 10-year career.
“Last practice we had, he hit five in a row on accident,” Dunn said. “That shows right there how good of a shooter he was.”
Much like Dwyane Wade was last season, Dunn has become Hoiberg’s personal project. The coach has worked extra with Dunn on many aspects of his shot.
“It’s balance, being athletic on your shot. Hold your follow-through,” Dunn said of Hoiberg’s advice. “Sometimes I like to snap my wrist out of there. And see it go in. Don’t take the shot if you don’t think it’s going in.”
Wade shot 31 percent last year after Hoiberg’s tutelage, the second-best mark of his career, and is at 34.5 percent this season. Dunn shot 28.8 percent on 3-pointers last season and is at 44.4 percent this season on more than twice the attempts.
“He’s doing a great job with me in practice,” Dunn said. “He’s working on my mechanics. He was a good shooter. So he knows when the ball is going to go in for me. He keeps being positive for me. I feel like my confidence is high. I’ll keep working on it and hopefully I stay in that groove.”
Focused Finn: Lauri Markkanen used an exclamation point to post congratulations on his Twitter account for Finland’s 100 years of independence from Russia, celebrated Wednesday. That’s about the most emotion you’ll see from the stoic shooter.
“He can miss four or five in a row or be 0-for-8 the night before and he comes in with the same attitude, smile on his face,” Zach LaVine said. “And that’s something you have to respect. I remember my rookie year and I’d have my ups and downs, I’d be the dude who would be more angry. But he has a positive outlook on everything.”
LaVine, who practiced with the Windy City Bulls in Chicago on Thursday, is excited to see what his return can do to boost Markkanen. Markkanen has been receiving a large share of defensive attention.
“I feel like I definitely could help,” LaVine said. “Hopefully when I come back, I can make a big impact on both ends.”
Layups: Nikola Mirotic practiced without incident Thursday and remains on track to make his season debut Friday against the Hornets. … The Cavaliers posted on their Twitter account that LeBron James hit a critical 3-pointer in Wednesday’s victory over the Kings — their 13th straight — on a play called “Chicago” that they also ran when James sank his buzzer-beating shot over Jimmy Butler to swing momentum in the 2015 Eastern Conference semifinals.
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