Gortat thriving without splint

Jan 9, 2012, 6:29 PM | Updated: 6:51 pm

It turns out playing with a splint on a broken right thumb really is a hindrance.

Marcin Gortat is living proof. In Sunday’s win over Milwaukee, the Suns center led all scorers with 18 points on 9-of-10 shooting. In the two games since having his splint removed, Gortat is shooting a blistering 83% from the field.

“I feel good, I feel great,” Gortat said, “Obviously not having a plastic thing on my finger is a major change for me. I’m glad that I’m finally able to catch the ball.”

Gortat suffered a non-displaced fracture of his right thumb last month in a preseason game against Denver, but to his credit, his shooting percentage didn’t dip too far. In six games while wearing the splint, Gortat shot a very respectable 56% from the field.

Gortat won’t blame the splint for another area of his game that he feels is lacking.

“I’m not going to blame my rebounds, because of my finger, but I’m still missing a couple rebounds,” Gortat said, “I think I’m going to do a better job in the next couple games, I think I’m just screwing up my positioning under the basket. I definitely have to focus on that.”

Gortat averaged 9.3 rebounds per game after being traded to the Suns last year, but this season he is averaging just 6.8 and has only one double-digit rebounding game.

It is obvious that Gortat is more comfortable without the splint, so one could speculate that all areas of his game will see improvement in the near future.

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