The four plays that make Davis Bertans the best 3-point shooter in the 2020 free agent class


That's how many players in NBA history have ever shot as well from 3-point range as Davis Bertans did this season.

In his first season with the Washington Wizards, Bertans averaged a career-best 15.4 points while taking 8.7 3-pointers per game and making them at a 42.4 percent clip. According to Stathead, the only players who have ever taken 8.0 or more 3-pointers per game and made at least 40.0 percent of those opportunities in a single season are Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson, Ray Allen, Damian Lillard and Duncan Robinson.

That's three players on the Mount Rushmore of 3-point shooting in Curry, Thompson and Allen, plus two of the best 3-point shooters in the league today in Lillard and Robinson. Pretty good company for the soon-to-be 28-year-old to be in.

Bertans' timing couldn't have been much better to have a breakout season. Coming off of his fourth season in the NBA, he's an unrestricted free agent this offseason, free to sign with any team in the league. While money is expected to be tight as a result of the 2019-20 season being suspended and cut short by the coronavirus pandemic, Bertans will likely be at the top of many wishlists.

In addition to those eye-popping numbers, here are four GIFs that help explain what makes Bertans a historically good shooter.

MORE: Where Bertans ranks among best players in free agency

From the parking lot

Let's start here: Bertans has range.

According to, he attempted 24 3-pointers this season from 30-34 feet, which is several feet behind the longest point on the NBA's 3-point line.

Want to guess how many of those attempts Bertans made? 18.

For context, Bertans was one of only three players this season to make double-digit shots from that distance. Trae Young was ahead of him with 21, but it took him 67 attempts to get there. Lillard made the most in the league, going 43-for-105 from 30-34 feet.

Even though it's on a relatively small sample size, shooting 75.0 percent from that deep is absurd.

They weren't all heaves either. Of the 18 3-pointers Bertans made from 30-34 feet, only two came with the shot clock in mind. He isn't afraid to spot-up several feet behind the 3-point line early in a possession and he'll pull-up in transition if the defence doesn't pick him up.

Speaking of getting out in transition...

A different kind of transition threat

According to, Bertans averaged 4.1 points per game in transition this season. That was one of the highest rates in the league, putting him ahead of players like Jayson Tatum (4.0), Kyrie Irving (4.0), Anthony Davis (3.6) and Ja Morant (3.4).

Bertans was incredibly efficient, ranking in the 90th percentile with 1.36 points per possession.

What's unique about Bertans is that the bulk of his scoring in the open court came from the 3-point line. He made 49.7 percent of the field goals he attempted in transition this season, which isn't great, but his effective field goal percentage - a statistic that accounts for 3-pointers being worth more than 2-pointers - was 70.3 percent because the majority of those field goal attempts were 3s, not 2s.

Bertans sprinting to the perimeter off of a make, miss or turnover is his version of Giannis Antetokounmpo eurostepping his way to the basket for a dunk. It makes him a tough matchup for power forwards who are accustomed to recovering to the paint because, once again, he'll shoot several feet behind the 3-point line if he's open and he has a lightning-quick release.

Put him on a team that likes to run, and Bertans will thrive.

Always on the move

According to, Bertans averaged 2.3 points per game off of screens this season, which - you guessed it - was one of the highest rates in the league.

Bertans was once again incredibly efficient, ranking in the 79th percentile with 1.10 points per possession.

That's important because it means Bertans isn't just a spot-up threat in the halfcourt. He's someone teams can run the occasional play for, and all he needs is a little bit of space to get his shot off.

Here's a crazy stat for you: Bertans made 40.4 percent of his tightly contested 3-pointers this season, meaning the closest defender to him was between 2-4 feet away. According to, he was one of 79 players who made at least 10 tightly contested 3-pointers on the season. Of those 79, only 13 made them at a higher rate than Bertans, a list that includes JJ Redick, Kawhi Leonard and Duncan Robinson.

So not only can he shoot on the move, Bertans can shoot on the move while under pressure.

Again, Bertans has a quick release, but he's also big for a shooter, standing at 6-foot-10. It's unusual for a player his size to have the speed and touch to run off of screens as easily as he does.

Taking this show on the road

This isn't something we saw much of from Bertans before this season.

In the first three seasons of his career, all of which were spent with the San Antonio Spurs, Bertans combined to make 20 pull-up 3s. In his first season with the Wizards, he connected on 27 pull-up 3s, doing so on 70 attempts.

Another relatively small sample size, but it points to a part of his game that should continue to grow in the years to come. Probably not to the point where he's taking 3s off the dribble in the same volume as James Harden and Luka Doncic, but perhaps to where he can consistently punish teams for running him off the 3-point line and create a little more offence for himself.

If he does get to that point ... watch out.

The views on this page do not necessarily reflect the views of the NBA or its clubs.

More from

Toronto Raptors rookie Scottie Barnes
Raptors rookie Barnes 'couldn't be happier'
Scott Rafferty
Tobias Harris, Ben Simmons, Joel Embiid.jpeg
Fact or Fiction: Pressing storylines facing 76ers Staff
Jaren Jackson Jr., Kevin Porter Jr. and Shai Gilgeous-Alexander are among the leading MIP candidates for 2021-22 NBA season
Our picks for this season's Most Improved Player Staff
76ers depth chart for 2021-22 season
Benyam Kidane
Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons, Philadelphia 76ers
Are the 76ers real contenders this season?
Benyam Kidane
Ben Simmons (Philadelphia 76ers), Kristaps Porzingis (Dallas Mavericks), Pascal Siakam (Toronto Raptors)
Simmons among players primed for bounce-back season
Benyam Kidane
More News