After rumors of improvement and a summer of hard work, Markelle Fultz's shooting motion looks like it may have regressed.
The 20-year-old guard's shooting form has become a running joke among NBA circles, and it looks like things have gotten even worse for him. As the Philadelphia 76ers took on the Miami Heat on Monday, the hitch in Fultz's shooting motion hit an all-time low on a free throw in the second quarter.
NBA Twitter reacted with a mixture of disbelief and outright sympathy.
The Sixers and Fultz both need Fultz to be traded.— Yaya Dubin (@JADubin5) November 13, 2018
Fultz shoots a basketball like Charles Barkley swings a golf club— David Dennis Jr. (@DavidDTSS) November 13, 2018
And of course, some folks anticipated how Fultz's new, outspoken teammate, Jimmy Butler, would react to the awkward mechanics.
Fultz has been scrutinized heavily since being drafted with the No. 1 overall pick in the 2017 NBA Draft. He sat out the majority of his rookie season due to a shoulder injury and possible confidence issues relating to his shot mechanics. He appeared in just 14 regular-season games last year and played in just three of 10 postseason games as head coach Brett Brown was careful in managing Fultz's playing time.
While the 6-foot-4, 200-pound guard has seen more minutes this year -- including being inserted into the starting lineup -- the results have been very mixed. He's averaging 9.3 points in 24.3 minutes per game and is converting on just 42.2 percent of his field goal attempts, including 30.8 percent of his 3-point attempts.
If Fultz's shooting motion hasn't improved after all of the scrutiny and coaching, any chances of fixing it may be in the rearview mirror.