Raptors forward Pascal Siakam is getting in the paint and finding early paths to the free-throw line this season which has helped boost his points per game average. Full episode of Imman Adan and Katie Heindl discussing early trends is available on the 'Raptors Over Everything' podcast feed.
IMMAN ADAN: Pascal Siakam, he has been an absolute killer. Like I said, his numbers right now, he's averaging 27-10-7 or something ridiculous, has been absolutely stellar. One thing that he's really done to drive his points per game is get to the free throw line. Now, he hasn't been great when he's there. Making them is a different story. But he's been getting there.
He is averaging over 8 free throw attempts per game, 8.3 currently. Do you think that that keeps up moving forward?
KATIE HEINDL: I think Pascal Siakam overall, the force of Pascal Siakam as we're going to talk about him this season, yes, I absolutely think that continues.
IMMAN ADAN: Can I make it more specific? Do you think that he will continue to average over 8 free throws a game?
KATIE HEINDL: OK, to get to the free-- I was going to--
IMMAN ADAN: OK, OK, sorry.
KATIE HEINDL: --try and neatly get into that.
IMMAN ADAN: Ahh, OK.
KATIE HEINDL: No, that's OK. I like the specificity. I do because it doesn't-- to me, it just means he's showing a lot more confidence in his game. I don't want to say selling it because it's like, some of those, I think, are warranted calls. But it's like, in the past with Pascal Siakam, there was sometimes a little bit of a question of like finishing or kind of following through and playing the play through or just really being intentional, especially at the offensive end.
And to me, him getting to the line so much just speaks to him actually doing that more. So yeah, because to me, that's all tied up in confidence, so absolutely I do think that will continue.
IMMAN ADAN: Yeah, yeah, you don't see him sort of shirking the contact and kind of moving his body in a way to sort of avoid that. He wants to get there. And I think that that's an important part because sometimes a big-- especially when they start shooting-- and I imagine that his free throw percentage will go up. I don't think that he's going to shoot-- what is it, like 50%-60% from the free line--
KATIE HEINDL: Yeah.
IMMAN ADAN: --moving forward. But a lot of times we've seen it. When guys are that bad from the free throw line, they start to lose confidence and don't want to get there. Cough, Ben Simmons, cough. So to see him continue to be aggressive and get there, I think, is really important.
So I agree with you on that. I think that that will continue. So are you saying over 8? Because 8 is a lot.
KATIE HEINDL: 8 is a lot.
IMMAN ADAN: We're getting into DeMar DeRozan territory.
KATIE HEINDL: Yeah, we are. I mean, because to me, another thing is it's also a respect thing. So it's that he's also being seen as this kind of like All-Star-caliber player. 8 does feel like a lot. It's generous. Let's say between 6 and 8. I think that can continue.
IMMAN ADAN: Between 6 and 8, OK.
KATIE HEINDL: Yeah, yeah.
IMMAN ADAN: I like that. Though more than he's ever had in his career because prior to that, he's only done about 5. OK, I like--