This may just be my own longstanding bias against Kris Dunn, or my lack of knowledge when it comes to actually playing basketball (let alone NBA-level perimeter defense), but when I saw this clip of Trae Young getting ejected for staring down Kris Dunn, it was what Kris Dunn was staring at that caught my attention.
Though he doesn’t really come close, Dunn is strangely (to me, anyway) looking down at the ground to see where his feet are relative to Young’s landing position.
I wouldn’t have really thought much of anything if not for it triggering a memory of another time Dunn was getting lit up by an opposing young PG, back in January when Jamal Murray went bananas.
Dunn, when defending Murray jump shots, is either sticking out his leg, looking down to do so, or both. And on this last play Murray lands awkwardly on Dunn’s foot.
Going back to Trae Young, there wasn’t much look of this from Dunn in that Sunday game before Young was ejected. But in the game prior, the 4OT classic where Young scored 49 points, there looks to be more of this, and again the last clip shows Young actually landing on Dunn’s foot.
Now I acknowledge it’s bad form to be ‘just asking questions’ guy here, and I don’t want to accuse Dunn of being a dirty player, but I want to put it out there in case others want to accuse him and credit my detective work. For all I know, this is a way for Dunn in knowing that shooters often kick out their legs, to make sure he’s avoiding this kind of undercutting.
And again, I’ve long been turned off by Dunn’s attitude relative to his play (i.e. he thinks he’s really good and isn’t afraid to tell you - save that mindset for bloggers!) and he’s shown to be a bit of a redass on the court (specifically with Young) so maybe that bias is fueling a huge reach by me, but I found it strange!