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Reno Bighorns Sink NBA D-League Record 31 Three-Pointers in One Game

By Brian Kotloff | February 2, 2015

“The System” the Sacramento Kings have brought to their NBA D-League affiliate this season had produced some incredible numbers: 11 threes in one game for Brady Heslip … and then 13 two weeks later. Scores like 175-152, 174-169 and 160-153. Averages of 138.9 points and 48.2 three-pointers attempted per game.

And then the numbers reached a new stratosphere on Saturday in Reno, when The System clicked on all cylinders and the Bighorns made 31-of-54 from beyond the arc, breaking the previous record of 28 that they had set two months earlier.

Final score: Bighorns 157, Santa Cruz Warriors 132.

How did they do it? Dig into the absurd numbers:

  • To state the obvious, all of the Bighorns caught fire at once from the moment the game tipped off. They made their first four three-point attempts in the span of 59 seconds early in the first quarter, hit 12-of-15 in that opening quarter and finished at 19-of-25 in the first half.
  • Each of their starters made at least four threes and shot better than 50% from beyond the arc. Four of the five players who appeared off the bench made a three, as well; the only player who saw the floor for Reno that did not connect from deep was (not coincidentally) 7-foot-5, 360-pound center Sim Bhullar.
  • They got off a three every 53 seconds in large part due to the 55 shots the Warriors missed. Believe it or not, Santa Cruz’s 52% shooting represented success for Reno on the defensive end: They entered the game giving up 55% shooting on the year, as The System’s full-court press often yields open layups that in turn allow the Bighorns to race back the other way.
  • The Bighorns were so locked in that they needed 25 fewer shots than they normally take to break the record; because they shot 10% better, grabbed six fewer offensive rebounds and forced five fewer turnovers than their season averages, they took “just” 82 shots in a 113-possession game compared to their previous averages of 107.2 shots and 120.5 possessions
Anatomy of a Record: Reno’s 31-of-54 Three-Point Explosion
3FGM/A 1st Quarter 2nd Quarter 3rd Quarter 4th Quarter David Stockton (PG) Ra’shad James (SG) Cameron Ayers (SF) Jordan Hamilton (PF) David Wear (C) Pace OffRtg eFG%
31/54 12/15 7/10 4/15 8/14 5/6 6/11 4/6 7/12 5/8 113 140.9 77.4%

150202_shot-chart_reno

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