Eyes Off the Ball

When we watch basketball, our tendency is to focus on the ball. Contributor Dylan Murphy reveals an overlooked but important factor we miss when we do that.

This is the first in a series of contributor pieces I am experimenting with, collaborating with others on articles in an effort to add even more of the type and quality of content you’ve come to expect from Cleaning the Glass without reducing my own output. Please let me know what you think in the forums. This first article is from Dylan Murphy.

Dylan is a former G League Scout with the Atlanta Hawks and Assistant Coach with the Fort Wayne Mad Ants. You can find more of his writing at The Basketball Dictionary, and can follow him on Twitter @DylanTMurphy.

Last week, Jabari Parker took a contested long midrange jumper:

Toggle slow motion in the video using the “SLOW” button. Jump back in the clip using the button.

That in itself was not so notable — Parker is no stranger to shooting from 18 feet. But in this case, Parker’s low percentage shot had little to do with Parker, or even really the ball at all. A deeper understanding of the principles governing spacing and off-ball movement explains why.

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