“The first words out of his mouth after the season ended were, ‘I think I could have been better this year,’” Swarm assistant coach Dan Ladouceur recalled about an end of season conversation with Shayne Jackson.
That’s the pressure that Jackson places upon himself each season, and after seven years, there are no signs he’s relieving himself of it.
It’s hard to ask for more from a guy that has been consistently great as Jackson has. Five straight seasons with 75+ points, 30+ goals, and 40+ assists. But a slow start to the 2018-19 season – just 3.0 PTS/GAME in the first third of the season – meant that the 28-year-old had to turn on the jets for the remaining 12 games.
|First six games||7||11||18||12.96%|
|Middle six games||9||17||26||20.45%|
|Final six games||15||21||36||28.30%|
From January 27 on, the Limestone College alum started producing 5.17 PTS/GAME. If Jackson was able to stretch that pace throughout the course of a season, he would finish an 18-game season with a whopping 93 points.
Jackson’s shooting was uber-elite for two-thirds of the season, resulting in his second-highest single season shooting percentage of his career at 20.53%.
The next closest Swarm player was Lyle Thompson at 19.55%. Amongst NLL forwards with 100+ shots, only Tyler Digby, Thomas Hoggarth, and Chase Fraser had better season shooting percentages.
“There’s a guy who takes full advantage of being a professional lacrosse person,” Ladouceur added. “Coaching and living in Atlanta gives him the opportunity to have the stick in his hands all the time, and Shayne takes full advantage of it. When you look at his shooting percentage, his on-net percentage, it’s very clear that that’s a direct result of his ability to have his stick in his hands as much as he does.”
Night night, Knighthawks
The Swarm swept the Rochester Knighthawks in the 2018-19 season, and no player feasted on the East Division rival as much as Jackson did.
In the trio of games, the Bowmanville, Ontario native recorded 21 points (9G, 12A) and a 34.52 S% against the Knighthawks. Jackson happily spread the ball around, as six different players benefited from his passes.
His success against the Knighthawks is a tad bit unprecedented. Jackson had 49 points (15G, 34A) against teal and purple before the 2018-19 season, a 3.27 PTS/GAME pace.
Not sure what Rochester had from 2013 to 2018 that helped keep Jackson in check, but chances are good they missed it last season.
2018-19 Player Capsules:
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