Kblaze, I really respect your opinion but that is not true.
Both Wilt and Shaq had terrible form and sure, ALOT of players in league history shot it odd and with unorthodox form a la Jamal Wilkes but they made them.
Both Wilt and Shaq had bad form and they always missed them, they were never even average..
Ive seen Shaq shoot fts waming up in person and barely miss. I cant say ive seen Wilt do it....but ive heard from the mouths of his teammates(not read a report...heard them say it) that he could shoot in practice.
And wilt...unlike Shaq...actually tried everything to help in game. Ive seen him do Shaqs kinda one handed flick, take 18 footers, granny style, and all that. He listened to so many people and put so much pressure on himself to perform he just broke down and got worse and worse. Wilt shot 63% in college in 1957 and shot 38% at the peak of his ability(76ers).
What...you think he got less skilled with all those years of playing ball, taking tens of thousands of shots, and being driven to improve by being mocked when he was one of the most proud athletes ever? This guy HATED the idea that bigmen were not skilled and worked his ass off to be a good FT shooter partly to fight that belief but he just could not make them in game.
Once they saw that he could shoot with guys like Chet Walker in practice but in games he might shoot 25% they had him talking with doctors and gave him a personal Ft coach to tinker with his form and all.
I remember seeing him and his coach talking about it on what I think was an NBA halftime when Shaq was young and his FT shooting was being discussed.
A lot of guys who cant make FTs in the NBA can outshoot guys who can in practice.
You shoot tens of thousands of FTs(he shot over 11000 in the league and many more by himself) you could learn to make them with any form if it were a matter of just....skill.
But it isnt. The mental side comes in. Especally with guys who for one reason or another are under unusual pressure at the line.
This shouldnt be hard to believe. There are too many examples of it. Including modern ones. Here is Dwight who has hired the same FT coach Shaq used(Guy has made 99% of his FTs for years...olds the world record of 1206 made in an hour). guy says Dwight shot 83%(likely 83 of 100 at the end of the workout which is how he did it withshaq).
So Dwight has a world class Ft coach and he shoots 49% this year.
Shaq with the same guy....shot 80% in practice too. Wilt did. Virtually everyone does.
And then still miss half or more in the games.
It just is not as simple as how skilled you are. It never has been.
Wilt like everyone else who takes many thousands of FTs and works hard to improve....could make them with nothing on the line and no pressure. Its a simple thing to do. In games the change is mental. Not the physical ability to throw a ball where it needs to go...the way you have done tens of thousands of times.