Steven Adams has Thunder coach punch him in gut while practicing free throws

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Steven Adams has improved his free throw shooting percentage each of the past three season and knocked down 61.1 percent during the last campaign. Not exactly Steve Nash territory, but good enough to move out of “hack-a-Kiwi” range.

What’s his secret? Well, it may not be one we see DeAndre Jordan adopt, according to Fred Katz at the Norman Transcript.

He plays one of the most physical styles of any NBA player. And he owns an unmatched, eccentric personality. So, when he’s working from the charity stripe, he has Thunder assistant coach Darko Rajaković come out of nowhere and, every once in a while, upper-cut him in the stomach just when he least expects it.

Then, it’s free-throw time.

That may be the most Steven Adams thing ever.

I’m not sure we’re going to see Stan Van Gundy use this on Andre Drummond… although he might have liked to a few times.

With Paul George and Russell Westbrook on the roster, Adams may fly under the radar of the casual fan this coming season, but he is going to be vital to the defense-first identity the Thunder are going to build.