Posted: Friday January 19, 2007 9:59AM; Updated: Friday January 19, 2007 5:49PM
Should the NBA abolish the three-point line?
Bulls coach Scott Skiles: "I was a big three-point shooter but I've never been a fan of it. I know it's a fan thing, and we're a good three-point shooting team and it can bring you back in games, it's a weapon. But if you took it away, I believe shooting percentages -- and scoring -- would go up. I don't have any proof of that -- it would take me too long to do a study -- but people would get off the [three-point] line and they'd make more twos.
"The counter argument is that missed threes a lot of times lead to transition. If you can get the long rebounds, that actually speeds up the flow of the game.''
Nets president Rod Thorn: "We wouldn't have nearly as many horsebleep shots thrown up. The three-point line is such a part of it now that I don't see them changing it. But you know something, I'm a convert to getting rid of it. I think we'd have a cleaner game without it. I think we'd have not as many terrible-looking shots.''
Pacers president Donnie Walsh: "I think it's a good rule. It's exciting to the fans, it takes a special skill and it keeps shooting -- great shooting -- in the game.
"It shouldn't lead to bad shots, and as the season goes on I don't think it will. Right now there's a lot of bad shots inside the three-point line. There are going to be bad shots going to the basket. When you get down to when teams are really together and playing well, you see the right guys are taking the right shots at the right time. And if they're not, then the coaches aren't playing them.''
Celtics coach Doc Rivers: "Scoring would go up. Spacing would return, especially the in-between spacing that doesn't exist anymore, and people would take good shots instead of bad shots. If you go back and look at the day they started the three-point shot, just about each year that the attempts from the three-point line went up, the overall scoring in the league went down.
"If there were no three-point line you'd have more movement and cutting, and people would space on their own instead of spacing to the three-point line. How many times do you see a guy with a nice two-point shot stepping backward in order to take a bad three-point shot?
"If they wanted it to make use of the three-point line, they could put it in for the last two minutes of the game. Because that's the only time it works -- in the last two minutes of a close game.''
Raptors VP and assistant GM Maurizio Gherardini, who spent the previous quarter century as one of the top GMs in Europe: "When the three-point line was first introduced, I was against it because I thought it took away from the true spirit and nature of the game. But now it has changed the game to the point that you cannot go back to what was before. It has already entered the culture of playing the game in a certain way. A special set of plays is set up for the three-point shot; it is used as a real weapon.
"Because the line is [almost 3 feet] closer to the basket in Europe than it is in the NBA, it is even a bigger weapon over there than it is here. Over there it gives every team a belief that it can beat any opponent. The fans and the players truly believe that if they can get hot from the three-point line, they can knock off anybody.''