One of the recurring questions during Thursday’s exit interviews with the Wizards was about Jan Vesely’s lack of confidence. A.J. Price gave some insight into what exactly is freaking Vesely out.
“I’ve heard it out of his own mouth,” Price explained. “He doesn’t like to go to the free-throw line, because everybody’s watching. It’s a confidence thing, so you know exactly what the issue is with him. It’s up to him to find that piece, or that confidence. However he’s going to find it, it’s up to him to find it.”
Vesely was a 30.8 percent free-throw shooter this season, the worst on the team by a large margin. Maybe it would it help if we all closed our eyes when he went to the line, so he could feel like no one’s looking at him.
Clearly Vesely’s teammates are familiar with his fear of free throws. Back in November, Jordan Crawford attempted to fool the refs in Charlotte by taking Vesely’s shots from the line. He sunk one successfully before getting caught.
“That probably had to do with it,” Price said, when I asked whether Vesely’s reluctance to shoot led to Crawford stepping in. “I was thinking, ‘You’re not going to get away with it.’ He almost got away with it, but he got caught eventually.”
Here’s the video, if you missed it the first time.