Kenny Boynton has tried different things to address his shooting problems.
During Boynton’s freshman season, he studied videotape. Over the summer, Boynton hired a shooting coach.
But eight games into the 2010-11 season, Boynton is at a worse percentage from 3-point range now (26.5) compared to at the end of his freshman season (29.7).
Boynton has missed his last nine 3-point attempts after going 0-for-6 from 3-point range (and 0-for-9 overall) against American. It appears that he is firing up more line drives compared to earlier in November, when he started 7-for-20 from beyond the arc.
I asked Florida coach Billy Donovan after the American game if he’s worried that the shooting woes are getting into Boynton’s head. Florida fans watched Dan Werner gradually implode mentally during his four-year career due to his inability to make wide-open shots.
“I don’t worry about that because I’m not going to allow him to stop shooting,” Donovan said of Boynton. “What I want him to do is to take good shots.”
The question is, if career 28 percent 3-point shooter is wide open, is it still a good shot? Donovan thinks so. Boynton has been a streaky shooter early in his UF career. The problem is, Boynton’s bad streaks outweigh his good streaks. Boynton went 5-for-8 in UF’s biggest game this season against Ohio State. But he also failed to make a three-pointer in three games this season, going a combined 0-for-15 against UNC Wilmington, UCF and American.
“He’s not going to do that every game,” Donovan said. “I’m more worried when he shoots for a low percentage and he takes very hard shots. And I thought we found him, we ran him off some screens we got him the ball in space. He didn’t make some shots (against American) and there’s gonna be some games when he’s gonna really, really explode.
“I think when you look at the course of the season there’s gonna be a lot of ebbs and flows in shooting and what I always do is look at shooting percentage at the end of the year. And right now, he has not shot the ball well from the 3-point line. That’s definitely a fact. The UCF game I thought not only him but a lot of our team took a whole lot of difficult tough shots. (Against American) he took great shots and it didn’t go in.”
Donovan gives Boynton more rope to miss shots because he doesn’t let his problems putting the ball in the basket bleed into other areas of the game. Boynton is still UF’s best perimeter defender. And against American, Boynton made good decisions with the ball, finishing with seven assists and no turnovers.
We’re going to be a team that’s probably going to be streaky from the 3-point line,” Donovan said. “Kenny is a good scorer and we need his scoring, but we need him to take good shots. And I thought he played really the right way and took good shots. He didn’t add to our team in terms of the points, he added to the team, in my mind, he had 14 assists tonight. He contributed 14 points. Even though he didn’t put the ball in the basket he helped a couple of other guys put the ball in the basket.”