Why Bridges is broken and how the Phoenix Suns can fix him

Mikal Bridges, Phoenix Suns (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
Mikal Bridges, Phoenix Suns (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images) /
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Phoenix Suns, Mikal Bridges
Phoenix Suns, Mikal Bridges. Mandatory Credit: Alonzo Adams-USA TODAY Sports /

Getting to the free throw is a tried and true method for helping get a scorer back on track, and Bridges seems to understand that and will hopefully do it more.

Bridges needs to rely less on the three-point shot

Alternatively, one way to not end a shooting slump and not get to the bucket is to launch three-point shots, which is exactly the opposite of what Bridges needs to be doing. If Mikal is to get back to providing a consistent 15-20 points a night, he needs to attack the basket and stop taking too many three-point shots.

When a player is on a hot streak, taking three-pointers all day makes sense; see Landry Shamet a few weeks ago. However, Bridges has been ice cold from three-point land, hitting over 50% of his nearly five-a-game – a career-high in attempts – only two times since December.

This does not mean Mikal should not shoot any threes, which has happened several times this season; however, when he is going two for ten or one for five, he needs to do something different and attack the basket, which can help lead to free throw attempts is the answer.

The simplest solution with his outside shooting is for Mikal to take a page out of Cameron Johnson’s playbook. Johnson is an excellent pump faker who uses that move to draw out the defense the attack the bucket. Bridges’ awkward release makes pump fakes more difficult, but adding one or two fakes on threes to put the ball on the floor and step in for a shorter shot or go all the way to the basket can help expand Bridges’ game.