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Everyone likes to talk about various NBA players having the "clutch gene." You know, those guys who perform the best when the lights are brightest and the stage is biggest.
While it may seem like a number of players possess these traits, when it comes to true shooting percentage in the playoffs, only one player stands out above the rest: Kawhi Leonard.
Kawhi might be the least flashy or flamboyant star in the NBA, but he also might be the most effective, especially in the playoffs. Outside of Kawhi, only Draymond Green saw an improvement in his true shooting percentage in the playoffs. Chris Paul, Kyrie Irving and Paul George all stayed relatively the same. Every other star in the league saw a significant downturn. Joel Embiid's decline is pretty stunning.
In the NBA Playoffs, the competition is tougher, the stakes are higher and the defense is tighter. This makes Kawhi's improvement all the more impressive.
While we're not suggesting this one stat is the main indicator of the clutch gene, it's certainly an eye-opening look into the difference of playoff basketball and the skill of Kawhi.
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David Kaestle is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, David also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username davekaestle. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in their articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.