It’s been a rough couple of weeks for Portland Trail Blazers guard Wesley Matthews. In the second half of January, Matthews is shooting just under 30% from the field and around 33% from beyond the arc.
OregonLive.com says that Matthews is calling this the biggest slump of his career, going all the way back to his days of playing ball as a kid.
“What I’m struggling with is I feel like I’m not helping the team,” Matthews said. “It’s not like I’m not doing what I’m supposed to be doing to be successful. I’m doing everything the same. It’s just not working.
“The worst part is I feel great. My body feels good. I feel excited. I’m genuinely happy to be here. I understand the blessing I have to play this game. I’m excited every time I go to the arena. I feel good at the tip. My shot feels good and then it’s just like, miss, miss, miss, miss. Keep shooting. Miss, miss, miss.”
In his short NBA career, we’ve seen Matthews play the game with passion and even a little bit of kid-like enthusiasm (the “three goggles”). Now it seems like all the joy has been sucked out of him. It really is as if Dr. Evil has gone back in time to steal his Mojo.
Matthews is getting some encouragement from his teammates. Point guard Raymond Felton told him to keep shooting. Guard Elliot Williams told him to “keep the faith.”
Matthews has said he’s at a loss right now and doesn’t know what to do to fix his slump. I’m going to have to echo what Felton said, just keep shooting. We’ve seen some magic from Matthews during his short NBA career. He wasn’t even drafted but worked his way on to the Utah Jazz. It’s that dedicated work ethic that will get him out of his slump. It’s called a slump for a reason, if it wasn’t supposed to end, we’d just be calling him a bad player, and I haven’t seen anyone do that.