Analyzing the top five 3-point shooters in Los Angeles Lakers history

The Los Angeles Lakers have some of the top 3-point shooters in NBA history, with three former players and one current ranking among the top 40 all-time for 3-pointers made.

The late Kobe Bryant, Nick Van Exel and Eddie Jones are the three former players who rank within that group. LeBron James ranks 14th all-time in 3-pointers (1,860).

As one of the league’s most historic and successful franchises, the Lakers have 10 former or current players who’ve made at least 350 3-pointers with the franchise. Kentavious Caldwell-Pope ranks 10th in franchise history with 397.

Here are the top five 3-point shooters in Lakers history. All stats are from Basketball Reference and NBA.com stats.

1. Kobe Bryant 

When Bryant stepped on the floor, he had nearly any shot imaginable in his arsenal. The turnaround fadeaway was his signature, but Bryant is a legend because of how he got a variety of shots off.

If his team was in a pinch, Bryant was trusted to score. Hitting 3-pointers was a part of that. He’s No. 1 in Lakers history for 3-pointers made (1,827). Bryant shot 32.9% from deep for his career, but he ranks 17th in league history for 3-pointers.

Bryant and James are the only former or current Lakers players who rank in the top 20 for all-time 3-pointers.

Bryant shot 21.6% of his field goals from the 3-point line during his career, as he also ranks first in Lakers history for 3-point field goal attempts (5,546).

2. Derek Fisher

Throughout his career, Fisher was one of the most reliable 3-point shooters in the league.

As the No. 2 shooter in Lakers history, Fisher made 846 3-pointers while suiting up for the purple and gold. He has the highest career 3-point percentage among the top five shooters in franchise history, hitting at a 37.4% clip.

Fisher played for the Lakers in two different stints, with the first one going for eight seasons from 1996-97 to 2003-04. The other went from the 2007-08 season to 2011-12.

As a key role player during his career, Fisher’s 3-point shot was an important part of his game; he shot 36.8% of his field goals from deep. Stats in this category aren’t available for the first four seasons of Fisher’s career; shot location stats weren’t kept until the 2000-01 season.

3. Nick Van Exel 

Van Exel played for the Lakers before they went on their 3-peat to begin the 2000s, spending his first five seasons in Los Angeles.

During his last season with the Lakers, Van Exel set a career-high in 3-point percentage (38.9%) that he matched in the 2004-05 season with the Portland Trail Blazers.

Van Exel made 750 3-pointers while with the Lakers, and he ranks 35th in league history for 3-pointers.

Van Exel had some of his best shooting seasons while with the Lakers. Aside from his rookie year in 1993-94, Van Exel never shot below 34% from deep during his tenure in Los Angeles.

4. Byron Scott

Scott is the only player from the Showtime Lakers on this list, and with the 3-point line not being used much in his era, his spot at No. 4 is indicative of his prowess at shooting from deep.

A three-time champion, Scott played for the Lakers for his first 10 seasons and his last season in 1996-97. He made 595 3-pointers with the Lakers, and he shot at a 37.0% clip from deep during his 14-year career.

The 3-point line wasn’t put in the NBA until 1979, and Scott’s rookie year was in 1983.

He didn’t average at least one 3-pointer a game until his fourth season in the league, and he didn’t shoot at least two 3-pointers until his fifth season. Still, he remains as No. 4 for 3-point attempts (1,595) in Lakers history.

5. Eddie Jones

Jones and Van Exel were teammates on the Lakers for four seasons, with Jones having one of his best 3-point shooting seasons in 1996-97.

He shot 39.1% from the 3-point line that season, and that’s the second-highest mark of his career. With Jones last on this list, he made 489 3-pointers in five seasons with Los Angeles.

Jones was traded to the Charlotte Hornets during the midst of the lockout shortened season in 1998-1999.  For the shooting location years available, Jones shot 40.2% of his field goals from beyond the arc.

Jones averaged 4.1 3-pointers a game with the Lakers, and he shot 37.3% from the 3-point line during his 14-year career.

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