Richard Hamilton on the midrange shot: 'Definitely a lost art'

Published December 6, 2023, 4:00 PMJC Ansis

The NBA champion gave his insights on 3-on-3 basketball, the playing style today, the midrange game, and which players he enjoys watching.

NBA champion and Detroit Pistons legend Richard "Rip" Hamilton is in the Philippines for the upcoming NBA 3X Philippines.

In an interview with One Sports on Wednesday, Hamilton gave his insights on 3-on-3 basketball, the playing style in the NBA today, the midrange game, and which current players he enjoys watching.

Your thoughts on 3x3 basketball and your return to Manila

It's a great event, the NBA 3X Philippines. I love it because when you look at the game and you were taught to play the game, a lot of it came through 3-on-3. I was a young kid in Pennsylvania playing 3-on-3 basketball since I was 7, 8 years old.

Just getting the opportunity to come out here and interact with fans, give some young hoopers some tips, which more than anything would be very appreciative of them because I didn't have that when I was a kid. I think it's going to be an exciting event.

How much has the NBA game changed?

The game has definitely changed a lot - there's a lot more scoring. My Pistons team held opponents under 70 points for multiple games... now, teams might score 70 in a quarter. But the game has grown, from an offensive standpoint, it's been amazing. Guys are getting better and better—with the talent that's coming in—so the game is in a good place.

I tell people this, the biggest difference is that we played for the last 7 seconds in the shot clock. In today's game, they play for the first 7 seconds in the shot clock, and what that means is there are a lot more quick shots in today's game compared to the years I played.

You were a master at the in-between game. Do you think the midrange shot is a lost art?

I think it's definitely a lost art in our game. I wish more kids would adopt it because I just feel that when you have a great midrange shot that makes you more effective from the 3-point line and getting to the basket. The guy who's guarding you doesn't know what you're going to do. But if you're just a guy who'll shoot 3s, and I'll attest to it, that's the easiest thing to guard. I tell people to add that to their game. You look at the great scorers in the league from Devin Booker to the Kawhi Leonards, they all have a good midrange jump shot.

Who are some of the current NBA players you enjoy watching?

I love watching Steph (Curry) and Klay (Thompson). And you know, I love watching Victor Wembanyama. He's a freak - the guy is 7-foot-3, 7-foot-4. He can do everything that I can do, everything that Kevin Durant can do, he can do everything that Rasheed Wallace can do because he can post up. He's an amazing talent who a lot of fans and people enjoy watching.

How would you assess the In-Season Tournament and what do you like about it?

I like the In-Season tournament because it makes the regular season more competitive. especially when you got guys that really understand that they're only going to be judged on what they do in the playoffs: the LeBron Jameses of the world, the Steph Currys, and guys at the end of the day, when they put these teams together, they're getting judged if they win the championship. But if you put the In-Season Tournament, it makes the regular season more competitive. I love how they decorated the courts, I love to see fans more engaged and more excited, almost like an NCAA Tournament type of vibe. I think it's something that's going to be with the game for years to come.

Original NBA.com Philippines feature