What To Expect From Hollis Thompson This Season


Hollis Thompson has two years in the NBA under his belt. After starting off un-drafted in the NBA, he’s had to work harder than some other players to get to the point where he is at today. He now finds his place among other players who could be considered “misfits,” of their own with the Philadelphia 76ers.

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Signing with the Oklahoma City Thunder in his rookie season, he was quickly waived and had to make a name for himself in the D-League. He did well enough there to catch the attention of the San Antonio Spurs, who brought him in for Summer League in 2013. He didn’t do well enough for them to sign him, but the 76ers quickly jumped on the opportunity to add him to their developing arsenal.

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With the Sixers, Thompson quickly found his first important role as an NBA player, where he became a great off-the-bench three point force. He started half of the games with the Sixers in his first year, but was forced down again the next season, only starting just above 20.

Still, Thompson doesn’t let this get to him. He continues to push himself to be the best player he can possibly be, no matter where he finds himself. Whether it’s the D-League, or with an NBA team that is struggling to reach 20 wins, Thompson gives his all.

Last season, despite not starting as many games, he played more minutes than his previous year, and averaged more points per game (8.8).

When it comes to shooting, his three point shot is his best asset. Arguably, his deep shot is the best all-around component of his game. He attempted nearly 300 shots from the three point line last season, totaling up to be 53% of his total shots. Strangely enough, he was fantastic as a three point shooter on the road, shooting 42.8% from deep away from home, and just 37.6% in the Wells Fargo Center.

Hollis makes himself a great part of the offense because of his deep shot, and how he is willing to take a shot from anywhere on the three point line. No one location beyond the arc really sticks out on his heat map.

Hollis Thompson shooting chart 2014-15 season. Image courtesy of NBA.com/stats

He is clearly better from the sides, as shown by his measly 28.9% shooting from the top. Just inside, he shows issues as well, as he went 0/5 in that top section, and only going 1/6 in the section inside that.

It’s clear his mid-range jumper is in need of some help, as he shot just 25% from that middle ring.

Although I believe Thompson had reason to start coming into last year, I’m glad he was demoted right around the time of the All Star break. He started over 20 games before the All Star break, but just two following the break.

Despite him not starting, his off-the-bench role clearly worked out well for him. His three point percentage went up 10%, and his field goal percentage went up by 5% overall.


Hollis Thompson pre-All Star break, courtesy of NBA.com/stats.


Hollis Thompson post-All Star break, courtesy of NBA.com/stats.

His shot chart post-All Star break compared to the pre-All Star Break speaks for itself, and just goes to show how much better he is off of the bench rather than as a starter. While some would think less minutes would hinder him, he was still able to get almost the same amount of minutes as a sixth man.

Looking at this, I think we can expect a huge impact from Thompson next season. As a swingman, he’ll likely not see a lot of the shooting guard position due to Tony Wroten and Nik Stauskas being heavily involved there (although Wroten may be the point guard this year).

We could definitely see him playing small forward more, with his only major competition being Jason Richardson. Jerami Grant has been looked at as a player looking to get his place in the NBA as well, so we could see these two battling for the bench minutes this season.

Don’t expect Hollis to start next year. Expect him to be battling other players for his minutes. But, at the same time, don’t count Hollis out. He’s a player who has always had something to prove, and plays with a chip on his shoulder.

While Hollis would love to start, he performs much better off of the bench, clearly shown by the statistics he put up last season. I hope he comes off as the team’s sixth man next season, and shows the league that he can make an impact, and be a boost from the bench.

Next: Sixers Deciding No Players Worth Re-signing

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