Monthly Archives: December 2010

Star-Gate: Western Conference

Earlier this week we looked at some questionable omissions from the All-Star ballot for the Eastern Conference. Today we’ll be doing the same thing but for the Western Conference.

For this examination we will be turning to Wins Produced and Wins Produced per 48 minutes. Below is a list of all the players appearing on the Eastern Conference’s All Star Ballot, showing the minutes they have played this season, their WP48 and their total Wins Produced.

Keep in mind that when looking at WP48, 0.300 is considered super-star performance, 0.200 is considered star performance, 0.100 is considered average performance and anything in the negative is considered atrocious and embarrassing.

Leaving out a few players who have played limited minutes we can put together some fun lineups. Using listed position designations here’s the most productive lineup for the Western Conference.

Point Guard – Chris Paul – WP48 0.445
Shooting Guard – Manu Ginobili – WP48 0.288
Small Forward – Carmelo Anthony – WP48 0.178
Power Forward – Kevin Love – WP48 0.430
Center – Marcus Camby – WP48 0.340

This lineup doesn’t like quite as powerful as the most productive lineup we put together for the Eastern Conference but there is a lot more position duplication in the Western Conference. Lamar Odom, Pau Gasol, Tim Duncan and Lamar Odom all play power forward and have a WP48 above 0.290 this season.

Here’s the least productive lineup I could put together.

Point Guard – Derek Fisher – WP48 0.001
Shooting Guard – Corey Brewer – WP48 -0.006
Small Forward – Hedo Turkoglu – WP48 0.004
Power Forward – Carl Landry – WP48 -0.086
Center – DeMarcus Cousins – WP48 -0.041

The frustrations of the Sacramento Kings early in the season manifest heavily in this lineup. Especially since Tyreke Evans is breathing down the necks of Brewer and Fisher with his WP48 of 0.030. Chauncey Billups, O.J. Mayo and Brandon Roy can also thanks Brewer and Fisher for stinking it up and keeping them out of this lineup.

Finally, here’s the most productive lineup I could create with players left off the All-Star ballot in the Western Conference.

Point Guard – Kyle Lowry – WP48 0.149
Shooting Guard – Arron Afflalo – WP48 0.153
Small Forward – Matt Barnes – WP48 0.251
Power Forward – Paul Millsap – WP48 0.229
Center – Tyson Chandler – WP48 0.306

If you don’t like this lineup feel free to switch in any of these players also left off the ballot.

Serge Ibaka – WP48 0.194
DeJuan Blair – WP48 0.182
Josh Childress – WP48 0.161
Shannon Brown – WP 0.155
DeAndre Jordan – WP48 0.152
Samuel Dalembert – WP48 0.150
Deshawn Stevenson – WP48 0.150
Richard Jefferson – WP48 0.147

Clearly there were several misfires with the All-Star ballot besides the omission of Paul Millsap. Hindsight is 20/20 but including Brendan Haywood and leaving off Tyson Chandler looks horrible at this point. Over the summer I’m sure there wasn’t another real obvious candidate at guard, but the inclusion of Derek Fisher is baffling.

A few commenters have shared the opinion that this examination is a waste of time as none of the player’s were are discussing would receive enough votes to be starters, and if their play deserves inclusion on the All-Star team then the coaches will include them when filling out the rosters. To me there is more to this entire All-Star undertaking then just the five players who received the most votes for each conference.

I think of being on the ballot as a way of giving recognition to players who are productive and work hard. Whether or not Reggie Evans deserves to make to the team, it has to be frustrating that Toronto fans don’t have an opportunity to say “Reggie, you’ve been kicking tail on the glass and doing everything you can to help the ream win and we appreciate it,” by voting for him.

Making the All-Star team is one level of recognition. Being on the ballot and having the opportunity for your fans to vote for you is another level of recognition. That’s the one that I think some of these players deserve.

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Last Night’s Numbers – 12/17/10

This is Last Night’s Numbers, a daily feature where we run through the NBA games from the night before, highlighting one or two numbers I found particularly interesting from each game. All the stats are from Hoopdata’s box scores, which contain some additional advanced stats not available in traditional box scores.

Boston 102 – Atlanta 90

  • Atlanta shot the ball well, 50%, and did a great job getting to the line with a FTR of 0.353 compared to just 0.133 for Boston. However, they were just 3 of 10 on three pointers and turned the ball over on 20.5% of their possessions.
  • Playing without Rajon Rondo the Celtics still racked up 28 assists which was 63.7% of their made baskets. Paul Pierce led Boston with 10.

San Antonio 113 – Denver 112

  • Tim Duncan had a flashback game for the Spurs. In 33 minutes he scored 28 points on 12 of 18 from the floor. He added 16 rebounds, 4 assists and 4 blocks.
  • Both teams lived at the free throw line last night. San Antonio posted a FTR of 0.301. Denver’s was 0.432.
  • Both teams protected the ball well. Combined, the Nuggets and Spurs turned the ball over on just 9.4% of their total possessions.

New Jersey 97 – Washington 89

  • Washington just couldn’t keep New Jersey off the glass. The Nets grabbed 58.4% of available rebounds, including 17 at the offensive end for an ORR of 37.0%.
  • Devin Harris scored 29 point for the Nets but on 7 of 25 shooting. He was 14 of 17 at the free throw line. Harris used 40.9% of the Nets’ possessions on the night.
  • Both teams were extremely careless with the ball. Each team had 20 turnovers for a TOR of 20.8%

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Last Night’s Numbers – 12/15/10

This is Last Night’s Numbers, a daily feature where we run through the NBA games from the night before, highlighting one or two numbers I found particularly interesting from each game. All the stats are from Hoopdata’s box scores, which contain some additional advanced stats not available in traditional box scores.

Denver 111 – Orlando 94

  • Perhaps bolstered by rumors of an impending trade, Carmelo Anthony had a huge game. Melo had 35 points and 11 rebounds on a 67.7% TS%. He was 8 of 10 at the rim, attempted 11 free throws and 14 of his shot attempts come from within 15ft.
  • J.J. Redick broke out of his shooting slump in a big way. Redick had 29 points on a 96.9% TS%. He made 6 of 9 three pointers and all three of his shots from inside the arc.

Detroit 103 – Atlanta 80

  • Detroit beat up Atlanta on the boards. Detroit grabbed 58.1% of available rebounds including 10 on the offensive glass. They posted an ORR of 26.3% compared to just 8.3% for the Hawks.
  • The Pistons were 19 of 21 at the free throw line, including a combined 12 of 12 from Richard Hamilton and Rodney Stuckey.
  • The Pistons made 10 of 22 three pointers, including a 4 of 6 performance from the ghost of Tracy McGrady.

Golden State 108 – Minnesota 99

  • The Warriors were just 5 of 20 on jumpers from 16-23ft. They made up for it by knocking down 11 of 22 from behind the three point line.
  • Darko Milicic had 25 points and 11 rebounds for the Timberwolves. He was 6 of 7 at the rim but only 6 of 12 on shots inside of 10ft. but not at the rim.
  • Golden State drew a ton of fouls, posting a FTR of 0.403 for the game. Unfortunately they made just 19 f their 31 attempts at the line.

Houston 118 – Sacramento 105

  • Sacramento actually outshot Houston, 52.5% to 50.0%. Houston was able to pull out the win, and post a ridiculous 121.6 Offensive Rating because they knocked down 10 three pointers and only turned the ball over on 11.3% of their possessions compared to 18.6% for Sacramento.
  • DeMarcus Cousins took 15 shots for the Kings, only 2 of which came at the rim. I guarantee that is not the kind of shot distribution they are looking for from him.

Philadelphia 82 – New Jersey 77

  • Philadelphia was able to grab a win despite getting destroyed on the glass. New Jersey grabbed 58.6% of available rebounds and had an ORR of 38.0%. No 76er had more than 6 rebounds in the game.
  • The difference for Philadelphia was their ability to make more shots than New jersey, barely. The 76ers shot 40.6% for the game, the Nets shot just 34.2%. The Nets were just 8 of 20 on shots at the rim.

L.A. Lakers 103 – Washington 89

  • The Lakers spent most of the night at the free throw line. They posted an FTR of 0.533 and ended the game with 40 attempts compared to just 16 for the Wizards. They had a 17 point advantage from just made free throws.
  • Washington’s three headed guard monster, Arenas, Hinrich and Young, were just 17 of 46 for the game. That includes a sparkling 1 for 13 performance on three pointers.
  • The Wizards kept themselves in the game with 19 offensive rebounds. JaVale McGee and Kevin Seraphim each had 6. Seraphim’s 9 total rebounds came in just 15 minutes of action.

Charlotte 97 – Toronto 91

  • The free throw shooting in this game was just plan awful. The two teams combined for a respectable FTR of 0.305. However they were a combined 29 of 50 at the line. That works out to just 58%, yuck!
  • Toronto did a great job on the offensive glass, with an ORR of 38.5%. Three different players had at least 4 offensive rebounds.
  • Charlotte blocked 13 of Toronto’s shots. That’s 14.6% of their total attempts.

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Star-Gate: Eastern Conference

I’m a few weeks late to the dance here, but when the NBA’s All Star ballots were released a lot was made of the omission of the Utah Jazz’s Paul Millsap, who had emerged as a star in the first few weeks of the season. The All-Star ballots are set before the season starts and the rules are fairly rigid. 24 guards, 24 forwards and 12 centers are chosen from each conference and at least three players from each team must be included. This process is completed early to allow for the printing and distribution of paper ballots.

Each year it seems there is a questionable omission and Millsap is this year’s poster boy. But are there are other deserving players who have been left off?

For this examination we will be turning to Wins Produced and Wins Produced per 48 minutes. Below is a list of all the players appearing on the Eastern Conference’s All Star Ballot, showing the minutes they have played this season, their WP48 and their total Wins Produced.

Keep in mind that when looking at WP48, 0.300 is considered super-star performance, 0.200 is considered star performance, 0.100 is considered average performance and anything in the negative is considered atrocious and embarassing.

You may have already identified a few players who’s performance so far this season doesn’t justify their appearance on the All-Star Ballot, but I promise I won’t make you do all the analysis here all by yourself.

With the players on the Eastern Conference All-Star Ballot and a semi-rigid adherence to traditional position assignments here’s the most productive lineup I could come up with:

Point Guard – Rajon Rondo – WP48 0.354
Shooting Guard – Dwyane Wade – WP48 0.284
Small Forward – LeBron James – WP48 0.316
Power Forward – Kevin Garnett – WP48 0.350
Center – Al Horford – WP48 0.345
*Horford beats out Howard by a nose!

And here’s the least productive lineup I could come up with:

Point Guard – Gilbert Arenas – WP48 0.001
Shooting Guard – DeMar DeRozan – WP48 0.004
Small Forward – Linas Kleiza – WP48 -0.011
Power Forward – J.J. Hickson – WP48 -0.108
Center – Andrea Bargnani – WP48 -0.073
*Toronto, well represented on the Anti-All Stars.

I was also able to create this lineup, entirely with players who were left off the Eastern Conference’s All-Star Ballot:

Point Guard – Jose Calderon – WP48 0.194
Shooting Guard – Landry Fields – WP48 0.304
Small Forward – Quentin Richardson – WP48 0.181
Power Forward – Kris Humphries – WP48 0.345
Center – Marcin Gortat – WP48 0.210

If you don’t like any of the guys in that lineup feel free to switch in some of these players who were also left off the ballot for the East:

Reggie Evans  – WP48 0.365
Jerryd Bayless  – WP48 0.259
Mike Dunleavy  – WP48 0.241
Ronnie Brewer  – WP48 0.231
Amir Johnson – WP48 0.227
Tyrus Thomas – WP48 0.191
Josh McRoberts – WP 0.185
Brandon Bass – WP48 0.181

It’s worth noting that just by Wins Produced three different players left off the ballot (Landry Fields, Reggie Evans, Kris Humphries) could be starting in the theoretical most productive lineup made up of players actually on the ballot. My “left-out lineup” may not seem that imposing to many fans but I feel quite sure they could beat the snot out of several lineups made from players on the ballot.

Fans of the Toronto Raptors have to feel especially frustrated. Their three representatives on the ballot, Andrea Bargnani, Linas Kleiza and DeMar DeRozan, clearly don’t even belong in the discussion; especially as two of them have a WP48 in the negative range. Meanwhile, they have at least four other players, Jerryd Bayless, Jose Calderon, Amir Johnson and Reggie Evans, whose production seems to merit a spot on the ballot if not on the actual All-Star team.

Tomorrow we’ll go through this same exercise and examine some of the omissions from the Western Conference.

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Last Night’s Numbers – 12/14/10

This is Last Night’s Numbers, a daily feature where we run through the NBA games from the night before, highlighting one or two numbers I found particularly interesting from each game. All the stats are from Hoopdata’s box scores, which contain some additional advanced stats not available in traditional box scores.

Chicago 93 – Indiana 72

  • Without leading scorer, Danny Granger, the Pacers struggled to put points on the board. They shot 35.8% on the night and went 3 f 19 on three pointers.
  • Chicago controlled the glass, grabbing 54.1% of available rebounds. Carlos Boozer had 18 rebounds for the Bulls.
  • The Bulls recorded an assist on 75.7% of their made baskets, Indiana on just 40%.

Milwaukee 103 – Dallas 99

  • Milwaukee trailed by 10 at the end of the first quarter, but managed to recover and steal the win. The Bucks made their comeback by grabbing11 offensive rebounds and making 9 of 13 three pointers.
  • Andrew Bogut had 21 points and 14 rebounds on 10 of 12 from the field. His night could have been more impressive but he went just 1 of 6 from the free throw line.
  • Dirk Nowitzki had 30 point for the Mavs but shot 12 of 24 from the field. His 59.2% TS% in the game is well below his season average.

Miami 96 – New Orleans 84

  • This game tightened up quite a bit at the end. Both teams combined to score just 23 points in the 4th quarter, 9 for New Orleans and 14 for Miami.
  • Chris Paul was not nearly as dominant as in the Hornets’ first game against Miami. Last night he was 3 of 10 for 11 points with just 5 assists. He did add 8 rebounds though.
  • The Heat’s big three were 25 of 32 at the free throw line. They had only 6 turnovers among them, which was actually the total for the entire team.

Utah 108 – Golden State 95

  • Utah shot 49.4% from the field and recorded an assist on 66.7% of their made baskets. That’s good offensive execution.
  • Golden State kept themselves in the game with 18 offensive rebounds. Andris Beidrins had 7 and David Lee had 5. Their ORR for the game was 37.5%.
  • Gordon Hayward is apparently still finding his way in Utah. Last night he played 11 minutes, committed 4 personal fouls, turned the ball over twice and missed his only shot from the floor.

Memphis 86 – Portland 73

  • There were plenty of missed shots in this game with both teams shooting under 40%. There were also plenty of offensive rebounds. Memphis grabbed 17 offensive rebounds for an ORR of 37%. Portland grabbed 15 offensive rebounds for an ORR of 31.3%.
  • Zach Randolph finished with 25 points and 20 rebounds but just a 48.6% TS%.
  • Wesley Matthews had 18 points on 8 of 15 from the field for Portland. He was 6 of 8 on shots at the rim, a high number of attempts.

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Last Night’s Numbers – 12/13/10

This is Last Night’s Numbers, a daily feature where we run through the NBA games from the night before, highlighting one or two numbers I found particularly interesting from each game. All the stats are from Hoopdata’s box scores, which contain some additional advanced stats not available in traditional box scores.

Orlando 94 – L.A. Clippers 85

  • Orlando controlled the glass, grabbing 56.7% of available rebounds. Four different Magic players had at least 7, led by Brandon Bass’ 11.
  • Blake Griffin had another monster game for the Clippers with 27 points, 16 rebounds and 5 assists. His efficiency was not great as he made just 11 of 23 from the field and 5 of 11 at thre free throw line.
  • Dwight Howard led the Magic with 22 points in just 25 minutes. He could have had more but made just 6 of 13 free throws.

L.A. Lakers 99 – New Jersey 92

  • New Jersey kept the game close by crashing the offensive glass. They had 15 rebounds at the offensive end for an ORR of 31.3%.
  • New Jersey’s point guards, Devin Harris and Jordan Farmar, were a combined 1 of 10 on three pointers.
  • Kobe Bryant had a very efficient 32 points on just 19 shots. He made 3 three pointers and was 11 of 13 at the free throw line.

New York 129 – Denver 125

  • Both team’s scored the ball at an incredible rate. The two teams combined for an Offensive Rating of 130.9. Both teams shot above 50% from the field and 80% from the line. The Nuggets knocked down 7 three pointers to the Knicks’ 13.
  • Raymond Felton had a terrific game with 19 points and 17 assists. He personally assisted on 37% of the Knicks made baskets. 13 of his 17 assists went for layups or three pointers.
  • The Knicks turned the ball over just 6 times in the entire game for a TOR of just 6.2%.

Philadelphia 88 – New Orleans 70

  • New Orleans managed an Offensive Rating of 75.3 by shooting only 30.4% for the game. The Hornets not named Chris Paul were just 16 of 67 from the field.  
  • The 76ers recorded 24 assists in the game compared to only 4 for the Hornets. The Hornets’ total of 4 is the 2nd lowest total recorded in a game going all the way back to the 1986-1987 season.

San Antonio 95 – Portland 78

  • The Trailblazers grabbed 20 offensive rebounds in the game for an ORR of 38.5%. They gave themselves plenty of opportunities by shooting just 38% for the game.
  • Brandon Roy, Andre Miller and Nicolas Batum all struggled in particular, combining to go 8 of 33 from the field.
  • The Spurs didn’t shoot the ball exceptionally, just 43.3%. They did go 9 of 17 on three pointers and have a 15 point advantage at the free throw line.

Oklahoma City 106 – Cleveland 77

  • Anderson Varejao deserves a game ball for his work in a losing effort. Varejao had 16 rebounds in just 28 minutes, including 9 offensive boards. He also added a steal and a block with just one turnover.
  • The Thunder were 19 of 22 on shots at the rim. They finished the game with a 52 – 22 advantage on points scored from inside of 10ft.

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Last Night’s Numbers – 12/10/10

This is Last Night’s Numbers, a daily feature where we run through the NBA games from the night before, highlighting one or two numbers I found particularly interesting from each game. All the stats are from Hoopdata’s box scores, which contain some additional advanced stats not available in traditional box scores.

Dallas 102 – New Jersey 89

  • Dallas shot the lights out last night, finishing the game at 54.7%. Dirk Nowitzki and Shawn Marion were a combined 16 of 20.
  • The Mavericks’ ball movement was crisp as they recorded an assist on 75.7% of their made baskets, for a total of 31 on the night. J.J. Barea led the way with 13.
  • New Jersey turned the ball over on 17.2% of their possessions. 3 different players, Jordan Farmar, Damion James and Brook Lopez, had more turnovers than assists.

Boston 102 – Philadelphia 101

  • The 76ers kept the game close with their offensive rebounding. They had 15 total in the game for an ORR of 34.9%.
  • The Celtics hot shooting was the difference. They finished the game at 55.9% from the field, 90.5% from the line and 58.4% on three pointers.
  • Rajon Rondo had 14 assists for the Celtics, 10 of which went for layups or three pointers.

Portland 97 – Orlando 83

  • Dwight Howard had 39 points and 15 rebounds for the Magic. Indicative of his expanding range, he was 5 of 5 at the rim, 5 of 9 from inside of 10ft., 2 of 2 from 10-15ft. and 1 of 3 from 16-23ft.
  • Besides Howard, the Magic struggled. Howard made 13 field goals, the rest of the team made only 17.
  • Portland won the rebounding battle, grabbing 54.0% of available rebounds. Nicolas Batum added 10 to go along with Marcus Camby’s 13.

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