Salmons remains confident despite drop in production

John Salmons hasn't been scoring as well as expected this season, but he hit a particularly deep rut in the past week, scoring a total of 6 points in consecutive games against the Lakers and Celtics.

Needless to say, it was a relief for Salmons to bounce back with 20 points in Thursday's win over the Knicks. Salmons knocked down a 3-pointer with 47 seconds left that essentially put the game out of reach.

After the contest, the soft-spoken Salmons didn't hesitate to show his spiritual side.

"It's definitely been tough. It's not easy dealing with stuff like that," he said after the New York game. "I'm just trying to look to God, give him all the praise, and hopefully he'll come through. That's what he did today."

One of the questions heading into this season was whether Salmons could match his surprising production of last season, when he averaged a career-best 18.3 points. So far, he hasn't. After Thursday's game, Salmons is averaging 13.5 points and shooting 38.7 percent from the field.

Late last season, Salmons played small forward while Luol Deng was sidelined with a leg injury. This year, Salmons is primarily a shooting guard, and perhaps facing quicker defenders is one reason he hasn't been driving to the basket with as much frequency.

"I don't know. I think I've always been known for taking it to the basket, driving," he said. "But to me, I've always been a midrange player. I was taking it to the hoop and finishing at a high level (last season), so people kind of thought I was more of a driver.

"This year, I know I haven't been taking the ball to the hole as much as I did in the past, but I am confident. A lot of times, I'm taller than the people I'm playing against. I try to get to a spot and shoot over them. That's one of the reasons why I've been shooting a lot of jump shots, because I've been trying to shoot over smaller guys."