Marcio Jose Sanchez / AP via Bleacher Report
Even before the first tip off, Landry Shamet has once again shown the world why he is legit. The post ‘Lob City’ identity that the LA Clippers have worked really hard at establishing oozes out of their 22 year old shooting guard.
Shamet had a tremendous Second-Team All-Rookie season, scoring 9.1 points per game and shooting 42.2% beyond the arc. Do you know how impressive that is? The only other rookie to shoot above 42% and convert over 160 three point shots, was future Hall of Famer Steph Curry. Not only did Shamet achieve this, he did so whilst being traded, dealing with moving to a different city, and fitting into a new team system. That is ridiculously impressive and a testament to his character.
When news broke that Team USA invited Shamet to take part in their training camp, his response clearly showed how proud and excited he was to receive this invite. When trying to weigh the pros and cons, I’m sure it wasn’t an easy decision for him to make, considering he had a good chance of making the Team USA roster, but he recently withdrew.
It has been reported that Shamet has a minor muscle contusion in his lower leg; I’m sure this was contributed in part to his reasoning for withdrawing, but let’s not get confused. Since joining the Clippers late last season, it’s evident that he is a humble guy that plays for the team and not himself. The main reason he withdrew is for his team and their potential deep playoff run next season.
Shamet wasn’t the only Clipper to withdraw from Team USA: fellow teammate Montrezl Harrell made that same decision. The Clippers acquired both Kawhi Leonard and Paul George this offseason, elevating them to a previously unknown perch for the franchise: title favorites. This newly assembled Clippers team is locked into that goal. Shamet and Harrell are letting their actions speak louder than words in making the Clippers their focus.
Recent interviews have Shamet declaring his desire to handle the ball more next season, evidence of his filling a void left by the departure of Shai Gilgeous-Alexander. Certainly being further down the team USA Roster will not advance those goals, but working out with new team members will. Shamet will have opportunities to score countless buckets from deep, due to Leonard and George spacing the floor, and the possibility of improving his current percentage.
True basketball fans are familiar with Landry Shamet’s name, but with the increased profile of the new Clippers, and the promise of his improvement, the world is about to find out just how legit Landry Shamet can be.