“Midrange” has become a dirty word in basketball over the last few years. With the rise of extremely complicated data due to very fancy technology, the basketball community discovered that a three-point shot is worth one more point than a two-point shot. Kidding aside, the analytics movement revealed that shots from midrange yield far fewer points per possession than three-point attempts. Consequently, most teams have gone away from midranges. The 2019 Indiana Fever are not one of those teams.
Indiana takes the most midrangers in the league….by a lot.
The Fever actually have one of the most efficient offenses in the league through 20 games. Indiana ranks third in offensive rating at 98.8, according to WNBA.com. Yet, they sit at 6-15 and four and half games back of the last playoff spot. Essentially, Indy’s solid offense has kept them in the playoff race while their defense has dragged them down.
The offense relies HEAVILY on midrange jumpers though. The Fever lead the league in percentage of points that come from midrange shots at 24.0%, which is six percent more than any other team. 285 of their possessions have ended in a shot from 17 feet out to the 3-point line (or as I like to call it, Daryl Morey’s hell). No other team has more than 230 such possessions, according to Synergy Sports. They take 36.7% of their shots from midrange, far above the league average of 25.5%.
I could go on, but you get the picture: the Fever love the midrange. At the very least, they are pretty good at shooting from there. Indy maintains the 4th most efficient midrange offense with 0.736 points per possessions. Candice Dupree and Erica Wheeler basically made the All-Star Game by taking midrange jumpers. Those two rate out as “very good” in terms of points per possession from the midrange, according to Synergy’s data.
Despite what the numbers and the basketball analytics beehive say, Indiana built a very good offense predicated on midrange jumpers in 2019……for now.