Rodney Stuckey 2015-16 Season Highlights

Check out these top plays by Pacers point guard Rodney Stuckey from the 2015-16 season.

Rodney Stuckey Player Review 2016

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Rodney Stuckey 2015-16 Season Highlights

Check out these top plays by Pacers point guard Rodney Stuckey from the 2015-16 season.
May 10, 2016  |  02:33

Player Review 2016: Rodney Stuckey

by Mark Montieth Writer

Age: 30
Years pro: 9
Status: Has two years remaining on his contract (player option on the second year).
Key stats: Averaged 8.9 points on 41 percent shooting, including 24 percent from the 3-point line. Had averaged 12.6 points while hitting 39 percent of his 3-pointers last season.

Rodney Stuckey had one of the worst moments for a Pacers player all season in Game 5 of the playoffs at Toronto. Then he bounced back with one of the best moments in Game 6. Those games served as a neat summary of an uneven season that didn't turn out as well as hoped.

Stuckey had been the Pacers' savviest signing the previous season, when, playing on a one-year minimum deal, he averaged 12.6 points while shooting a career best percentage from the field (44) and the 3-point line (39). He scored 30 or more three times and in two consecutive games, the first time a backup player had done that in franchise history.

All of that earned him a three-year deal, but injuries kept getting in the way this time around. He missed the seventh game of the season with an ankle sprain, came back for a game, missed four more with the sprain, came back for 26 games (scoring in double figures 10 times in a stretch of 12 games), then missed the next 19 to let the ankle heal once and for all.

With the cast of reserves revolving around him, Stuckey never seemed to find the groove he had enjoyed the previous season. His defense was a constant and his effort and attitude were consistent, but his shot-making suffered. It wasn't for lack of trying. While the other guards gather at one end of the court for boisterous shooting contests from the 3-point line after practice, he always shoots at the other end while a couple of big men work on their skills. He gets up more shots that way, and it seems to fit his quiet nature. He's always one of the last players off the court, too.

GALLERY: Stuckey's Season in Photos »

Stuckey seemed to get his game back in April, when he scored in double figures in four of the seven games, including consecutive 17-point outings at Philadelphia and New York to begin the month and 10- and 12-point games to close the season. That turned out not to be a prelude to the playoffs, though. He averaged 5.4 points on 30 percent shooting over the first five games, and suffered through an absolute nightmare in Game 5 in Toronto. He missed 9-of-10 shots and both free throws in that game, committed three turnovers and at one point was simply lost the ball out of bounds, with Drake clapping in his ear.

It was an embarrassing episode that brought plenty of "bench him" critiques on social media, but Stuckey responded. He was last off the court again after the next practice at Bankers Life Fieldhouse and responded in Game 6 with eight points on 3-of-4 shooting, including 2-of-3 from the 3-point line, along with three rebounds, four assists and no turnovers in less than 20 minutes.

He played in Game 7, too, with nine points on 4-of-6 shooting, again with no turnovers.

Part of his value lies in the fact he prefers coming off the bench. That, and his calm demeanor contribute to team chemistry. Sometimes you hardly know he's there. To make himself heard in games, though, he'll have to remain healthy and restore his 3-point percentage.

Now that he's 30 and unlikely to become more athletic, shot-making becomes more important than ever. His career averages of 42 percent shooting from the field and 30 percent from the 3-point line need to improve. The fact he did it in 2014-15 indicate he's capable. He shoots a line drive shot that doesn't allow much room for error, so it wouldn't be a bad time to get with a shooting coach and put in a long summer's work in the gym.

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Note: The contents of this page have not been reviewed or endorsed by the Indiana Pacers. All opinions expressed by Mark Montieth are solely his own and do not reflect the opinions of the Indiana Pacers, their partners, or sponsors.


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