Why Lauri Markkanen is struggling

By Joni Ahokas 

There has been a mystery surrounding around the poor form of Lauri Markkanen. Chicago Bull’s leading power forward has performed under expectations. 

Markkanen started the season in an explosive way breaking his scoring record (35 points) in the opener against Charlotte Hornets. After brilliant season debut, it has been a downfall for Finnish superstar. 

Lack of consistency has emerged more in Markkanen’s playing than in previous two seasons. Looking Bulls-forward’s stats, can be seen that his shooting hasn’t been as lethal as in previous seasons. 

Especially threes behind the line. Dirk Nowitzki –compared Markkanen has executed before threes effectively, but after hsi first eight games the per cent is just 30.4. 

From 56 attempts he has hitted only 17, which is simply poor effort for a leading player. 

With field goal attempts, Markkanen isn’t doing well either submitting 39.3 percent of his attempts. 

Bulls- forward has also shown sloppiness in defending committing 12 personal fouls and total of 15 turnovers. 

Markkanen’s struggles has been speculated with possible injury. October 30th against Cleveland Cavaliers the Finn was even subbed in last quarter to watch remaining minutes from bench. 

Underperforming could be also related to last season’s heart problems. That was the reason why his season ended already in March.  

It was speculated that Markkanen suffered from overtraining. He had also changed recently his diet. The doctor diagnosed symptoms were caused by a combination of dehydration and lacking nutrition. 

Leading players lacking form has affected too on Bulls results. Despite facing weaker sides like New York Knicks and Cleveland Cavaliers, team have won just three of their nine games. 

Last game against Atlanta Hawks Markkanen showed signs of improvement making important blocks on defence and scoring 17 points in 113-93-win. 

A strong game can be the confidence boost he needed to regain his form. 

Sub-edited by Jack Bryant 

This image Tuomas Vitikianen complies with the Creative Commons License.

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