Can Jae Crowder Break out like Jimmy Butler?


Rajon Rondo was traded away from the Boston Celtics, and they were able to bring in Jae Crowder and several other pieces. Before arriving in Boston, Crowder was a sporadic role player in Dallas. When he arrived in Boston he was able to breakout in a way.

Apr 12, 2015; Boston, MA, USA; Boston Celtics forward Jae Crowder (99) drives the ball against Cleveland Cavaliers guard Mike Miller (18) in the second half at TD Garden. The Celtics defeated the Cleveland Cavaliers 117-78. Mandatory Credit: David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports

A comparison that is commonly made is Crowder to Jimmy Butler of the Chicago Bulls. Let’s look at the numbers from Jimmy Butler’s 2013-14 season, and Jae Crowder’s numbers this season. Both seasons the players were 24 and was their third season in the league. Crowder played about 900 less minutes than Butler, so for this I’ll be using Per 36 minutes stat lines.

In 2013-14 Jimmy Butler averaged 12.2 points, 4.6 rebounds and 2.4 assists per 36 on just 40% shooting from the field. Before this past season no one was clamoring for Butler, and now he is going to get a max deal in the offseason.

May 6, 2015; Cleveland, OH, USA; Chicago Bulls guard Jimmy Butler (21) defends against Cleveland Cavaliers guard Kyrie Irving (2) during the fourth quarter in game two of the second round of the NBA Playoffs at Quicken Loans Arena. Mandatory Credit: Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports

Let’s look at Crowder’s 2014-15 season per 36. Crowder averaged 13.7 points, with 6.4 rebounds, and 2.1 assists on 42% shooting. He showed his toughness on defense and his heart all season, and during the playoffs. Per 36 minutes, Crowder had a better season, but let’s dive deeper into the advanced numbers.

During the 2013-14 NBA Season, Butler had a 44.6% effective field goal percentage, a 52.2% true shooting percentage, and a net rating of 4.2. He finished the season with a 7.3% rebound rate, and a 9.1% turnover ratio.

This season, Crowder put up similar numbers to Butler in his 2013-14 season. Crowder had 47.6% effective field goal, 51.7% true shooting percentage, and a net rating of 2.8. This year he finished with a 9.6% rebound rate, and only a 6.5% turnover rate.

The numbers between the two players in their third seasons is really comparable. The one discrepancy between the two is Jimmy Butler got to the free throw line at a much higher rate than Crowder did.

In the end, it’s on Crowder to improve enough so that he can make the jump that Butler did in his fourth year. We’ll see how everything looks come next season. Until then let’s remember this

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