In basketball, a “3-and-D” player is a term used to describe someone who specializes in two key skills: shooting three-pointers and playing strong defense.

These players are highly valued in the modern National Basketball Association for their ability to space the floor on offense and lock down opponents on the other end.

The ideal 3-and-D player has a combination of length, athleticism, and basketball IQ.

They are typically wing players, such as shooting guards or small forwards, who can guard multiple positions. On offense, they are relied upon to knock down open threes at a high percentage, often from the corners or wings.

In today’s NBA, where the three-point shot has become increasingly important, having 3-and-D players is crucial for success. They provide spacing for star players to operate and can punish defenses for leaving them open. Defensively, they take on the challenge of guarding the opposing team’s best perimeter players.

Some notable 3-and-D specialists in NBA history include Michael Cooper, Bruce Bowen, and Shane Battier.

Cooper, who played for the “Showtime” Lakers in the 1980s, was a lockdown defender and reliable three-point shooter. Bowen was a key cog in the San Antonio Spurs’ championship teams of the early 2000s, known for his suffocating defense and timely corner threes. Battier, who played for several teams including the Houston Rockets and Miami Heat, was a cerebral defender and a consistent threat from beyond the arc.

Another player that is on the list is Robert Horry. He played from 1993 until 2008 and was nicknamed, “Big Shot Bob” because of his crazy 3-and-D skills. He was better known for his defensive skills than his 3-point shooting.

Last but not the least is Raja Bell. He played from 2000-2012 and boasts of a 9.9-point career stats. He was best known for his 3-point jumps and high-end defense. Due to his skills, he was a favorite commodity in many of the NBA teams.

In the current National Basketball Association, players like Klay Thompson, Robert Covington, and Danny Green embody the 3-and-D role.

Thompson is one of the greatest shooters in NBA history and an elite perimeter defender. Covington has made a name for himself as a versatile defender and reliable three-point shooter. Green, a three-time champion with the Spurs and Toronto Raptors, is known for his ability to space the floor and guard multiple positions.

While 3-and-D players may not always put up gaudy scoring numbers, their impact on the game is undeniable.

They are the glue guys that help teams function at a high level on both ends of the court. As the NBA continues to evolve, the value of the 3-and-D specialist will only continue to grow.