In a bright Thunder season that has been all about fun and outgrowing expectations, Terrance Ferguson’s 2019-20 campaign has been one of the few disappointing blights.
He’s still quite young, but hasn’t taken the proverbial leap in years 2 or 3 of his career.
His anemic offensive impact has been well documented. He has long shot attempt (read: attempt) droughts, not to mention scoring struggles (7 points per game on the season). His efficiency has dropped from mediocre to bad on lower volume.
And while he prides himself on being a selfless stat-shunner in the mold of Steven Adams, doing very little hurts the team. He hounds his assignment–often the most difficult–on defense, and makes them work for generally inefficient scoring nights. But the combination of a still-too-high foul rate (4.5 per-36) and lack of help activity show up in team defensive numbers that are much stronger when Ferguson sits.
Personal issues have kept him out of the lineup for weeks at a time, which can’t be helping him deal with his on-court struggles. He’s back with the team now, but may have lost his starting job to a two-way player (Lu Dort).
Ferguson has tools (his bounce is otherworldly, and his shooting form isn’t ghastly) and time (his rookie contract runs through next season), but continued regression won’t result in opportunity forever.