The emergence of Tobias Harris | Magic Basketball



Mar 19

The emergence of Tobias Harris

The haul the Orlando Magic got in the J.J. Redick trade from the Milwaukee Bucks at the deadline, which brought in Tobias Harris, Beno Udrih, and Doron Lamb, is looking better and better by the game, highlighted by the strong play of Harris. After being buried on the bench in Milwaukee, he’s finally getting meaningful minutes in Orlando and his production has jumped with an increase in playing time.

In the 12 games Harris has played since the trade, he’s averaging 15.8 ppg and 7.3 rpg in 31 minutes with a .587 True Shooting percentage. What’s gone into his success with Orlando? Let’s dive into the tape.

Harris has been very efficient in isolation situations with the Magic so far. He’s shooting 53.3 percent and averaging 1.04 points per possession in isolation using a variety of methods, per Synergy.

Harris’ explosive first step helps him get to the hole easily and from there, he can finish with both hands, using a variety of layups, floaters, and hooks. If defenders overplay the drive, he’s confident pulling up from midrange and shooting.

Cut and transition
This is where Harris’ athleticism, smooth finishing, and basketball IQ come into play. He’s tough to stop once he gets close to the basket — he’s shooting 62.7 percent at the rim post-trade — especially when he has momentum.

It’s not all power and speed, either. Harris is creative in his finishing. He’s proved to be an intuitive cutter and knows how to fill the lanes properly on the fast break. He’s averaging more than 1.21 points per possession on both of these play types, per Synergy.

Harris’ silky outside shooting and spot-up ability has been a pleasant surprise for the Magic. He wasn’t known as an shooter with the Bucks, but his work on the perimeter has stood out with the Magic. Harris is a tweener and having a player who can play the stretch four position is huge in this era of the NBA.

Some will point to Harris’ success with the Magic as just a hot streak and, to some degree, it is. But his per minute stats post-trade are very similar to those pre-trade and even if his shooting regresses a little, he has all the tools to be a solid contributor for Orlando.