March 6, 2010

A Tip for the Bobcats and Thoughts on Rookie of the Year

Filed under: Uncategorized — wwinston @ 10:12 am

The Bobcats are in a desperate struggle for the Eastern Conference’s last playoff spot.  They should note that when they play Gerald Wallace at the 5 they play 8 points (per 48 minutes and after adjusting for opponent’s strength) better than average. During other times Wallace is in, the Bobcats play 3 points worse than average. So going small more often makes sense for the Bobcats. So far when Wallace is in, the Bobcats go small only around 1/3 of the time!

Another tip for the Bobcats: When Henderson is in with Jackson and or Felton (around 100 minutes) the Bobcats are great: they play 17 points betterthan average. In Henderson’s other minutes the Bobcats play 16 points worse than average.

Rookie of the Year?

So who should be Rookie of the Year? In the media the buzz seems to be for Curry, Evans and Jennings and we agree. For players averaging over 23 minutes per game here are our rankings:

Rank Player Team Points Impact
58 CURRY GS 5 5
64 EVANS SAC 2 13
97 CASSPI SAC -1 10
134 GIBSON CHI -1 -6
146 LAWSON DEN -3 -3
154 DEROZAN TOR -6 0
176 COLLISON NOH -4 -17
179 JEREBKO DET -4 -20
186 FLYNN MIN -8 -17

For example, after adjusting for who he played with Jennings has played 1 point better than an NBA player (per 48 minutes) and Curry has played 5 points better.

        Impact rating gives more weight to how the team does when the game is on the line. Jenning’s impact of +19, for example means that if Jennings were on the court with 9 average NBA players, we estimate his team would win 69% of the games. This high impact means that in close games Jennings is really helping the Bucks win. Our overall ranking here gives equal weight to Impact and Points Rating. So as you can see,  Curry, Evans and Jennings are neck and neck. The Hornets’ Marcus Thorton has played well, but he plays many fewer minutes than Curry, Evans and  Jennings. My guess is Evans will win the award, because the media believes Jennings has tailed off after his early 55 point game. In terms of impact, Jennings has been pretty solid all season and the Bucks are playing great, so I believe he deserves more consideration than he is getting.

March 2, 2010

A Review of the Post-All Star NBA World

Filed under: Uncategorized — wwinston @ 9:27 am

It’s been two weeks since the all star break ended.  That’s time enough to check out which teams’ trades helped and which hurt (at least so far). First, let’s look at how well each NBA team has played since the break. Based on games since the break here is how the teams have performed (adjusted for schedule difficulty).

     For example, the Mavs have been the league’s 2nd  best team playing 9 points better than average: 3.93 points better than average on offense and 5.06 points better than average on defense. We predicted (see our February 13th post) that Haywood’s great defense would really help the Mavs, and so far we have been right. Traditional box score metrics miss Haywood’s great defensive value, so  many other commentators concentrated on Butler as the major piece in the trade. The Nets have not been so bad, while the Knicks have played very poorly.

team rating off def
Orlando Magic 8.99 3.93 -5.06
Dallas Mavericks 8.79 2.40 -6.40
Phoenix Suns 6.99 3.60 -3.40
Atlanta Hawks 6.71 3.20 -3.51
Cleveland Cavaliers 6.30 9.68 3.38
Milwaukee Bucks 5.19 -0.65 -5.83
Oklahoma City Thunder 4.39 4.82 0.42
San Antonio Spurs 4.07 0.38 -3.69
Los Angeles Lakers 4.00 -5.53 -9.53
Utah Jazz 3.79 1.19 -2.61
Portland Trail Blazers 3.21 -1.71 -4.92
Chicago Bulls 2.26 4.22 1.96
Indiana Pacers 2.14 2.95 0.81
Houston Rockets 0.83 8.71 7.89
Charlotte Bobcats 0.24 -5.94 -6.18
New Orleans Hornets -0.30 -1.17 -0.87
Miami Heat -0.51 -10.67 -10.16
Denver Nuggets -0.56 5.06 5.63
Detroit Pistons -1.21 -4.13 -2.92
Golden State Warriors -2.26 3.98 6.24
Memphis Grizzlies -2.57 0.95 3.52
Washington Wizards -2.91 -2.42 0.49
Boston Celtics -3.26 -4.60 -1.34
Los Angeles Clippers -4.58 0.22 4.80
New Jersey Nets -6.16 -5.50 0.66
Toronto Raptors -6.29 -0.51 5.78
Minnesota Timberwolves -7.39 -3.69 3.69
Philadelphia 76ers -8.70 -1.60 7.10
Sacramento Kings -9.92 -7.22 2.70
New York Knickerbockers -11.27 0.05 11.33


Now let’s break down some key points about each team. A +5 rating, for example, means that since All Star Break our best guess is the player has played 5 points better per 48 minutes than average. These numbers are adjusted based on who you play with and against.


Crawford (+2 rating vs. +10 season rating) has played much worse since hurting his shoulder. Teague (-21 ) and Pachulia (-21) have played poorly off the bench.


The starters have played about at their regular season level.. The good news is that Daniels(+3), Tony Allen (+4) and Davis (+2) have been solid off the bench. The bad news is that Nate Robinson (-39) has played very badly.


Augustine (-9) has been in a slump while the newly acquired Tyrus Thomas (+7) has played great.


Gibson (+6) and Noah(+5 in the games he has played) have stepped up their play.


  The King has continued to play at near MVP level.  When Big Z returns he can fills the Shaq void during the regular season (both have -1 ratings) but against Orlando, Shaq is probably needed. Jamison (+3) has been solid but not spectacular. West (-10) and Gibson (-14) have played poorly.


Dirk continues to play at near MVP level. Butler (-5) has so far not lived up to expectations.  Haywood (+12 rating due entirely to a -12 defense rating) has been the key to  the Mavs resurgence. Najera (-1 rating vs. -8 whole season rating) has also stepped up his play.


Stuckey (+18) and Wallace (+16) have played like all stars. Daye (-24) and Bynum (-16) have killed the Pistons.


Birdman (+24) and Nene (+15) have continued their great, unsung play. Lawson (-9) has played worse and Carter (-25) and Allen (-21) have killed the Nuggets coming off the bench.

Golden State

Watson (+13) has played like an all-star while Maggete (-19), Ellis (-21), Turiaf and Biedrins (-14) have played poorly.


Battier (+11) and Hayes (+17) have been heroic. Kevin Martin has played at an average level while Jeffries (-30 rating) has not yet found his place.


Granger (+14), Ford (+7) and Head (+13)  have all stepped up their play. Solomon Jones (-17) has killed the Pacers all season.


  Outlaw (+15) has been great while Craig Smith (-9) has been in decline. Blake (-3) has not played as well as we would have thought.


Odom (+13) has carried the Lakers.  Bryant (+5) is clearly fighting injuries. Fisher (+7) has stepped up his play. Bynum and Farmar (-8) have caused problems.


Wade’s injury should in the long run help the Heat. Wade has still been playing at near MVP level, but Richardson (+13), Beasley (+11) and Cook (+10) have really stepped it up. Haslem (-9) has played poorly.


Thabeet (-23) was playing poorly before his demotion to D League. Haddadi (+20) has been great, but Young  (-11) and Arthur (-19) have killed the Griz.


Ridnour (-16) and Delfino (-9) have struggled. John Salmons (+12) has really keyed the Bucks improved play!


  Gomes (-9) and Flynn (-11) have played poorly. Even before his DUI Jefferson (-17) was really playing poorly. Wilkins (+5) has played his best ball of the season.


   Most guys are playing at their typical levels. Gray (+35) has stepped it up in his limited minutes while Songaila  (-7) has had problems.

New Jersey

Lopez has played like an all star (+11), keying their recent improvement. Terrence Williams (-13) has played poorly.

New York

TMac (-2) has been ok.  House (+5) and Bender (+10) have played well. So why have the Knicks been the league’s worst team? Douglas (-14), Duhon (-15), and Rodriguez (-16) have killed them.


Good news all around for the Magic. Carter (+11), Nelson (+10), Redick (+7), and Pietrus (+9) have all stepped it up.  Gortat (+22) has been amazing off the bench.


KD continues to play at near MVP level. Ibaka (-19) has played veyr poorly.


No noticable trends here. Young really keys their success.


The Suns have been great. Amare (+13) has played his best ball of the season as have Lopez (+15) and Hill (+6). Nash continues to be great and Dragic (+9) is now a super sub for Nash.


Roy (+3) has played at his whole season level since returning from injury. Fernandez (+11) and Miller (+14) have carried the Blazers. Camby (+2) has been near average, but this is a big improement over Howard and Pendergraph.


   Green (-14), Thompson (-23) and Nocioni (-14) have played poorly. Despite being in the doghouse, Hawes (+7) has played well.

San Antonio

Hairston (+23) has been great in limited minutes while Bogans (-11) and Bonner (-4) have struggled.


The absence of Bosh has clearly hurt. Bargnani and Turkoglu (-5) have seen their performance decline. DeRozan (-15) has really struggled. On the bright side, Amir Johnson (+4) and Wright (+7) have been super subs.


AK47 (-3) and Okur (-10) have struggled. Korver (+16) has been amazing off the bench.


Josh Howard (+27) was playing like an MVP before he sadly tore his ACL. Miller (+11) has also played well. Foye (-16) and Ross (-17) have played poorly.

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