Counter-Point Step Attack Distances

I noticed that there’s different distances on the Counter-Point Step Attacks, most notably on the punch. At max distance in training mode, I can vary it so that it either whiffs or hits.

During actual game play, I feel like the max distance on the counter-point attacks are harder to achieve. It would be nice if there was more leeway for it, since getting the shortest distance is pretty easy.

Also, how many distances are there? Is there a middle distance? Is there more?

As far as I can tell, it just starts going into the followup attack animations when you press the button, so there’s a sort of period of time where you can start the followup at any point