January 15, 2010

A Happy New Year for the Knicks?

Filed under: Uncategorized — wwinston @ 4:24 pm

The Knicks have surged amazingly since a 3-14 start. Since then the Knicks have played 4 points better than an average NBA team and they have a great shot at making the playoffs.

      By the boxscore (as measured by Hollinger’s PER ratings) David Lee (PER of 21) is the Knicks star. This just is not true. Jared Jeffries (with a horrible PER of 9 and Gallinari (PER of 16) as well as Chandler (PER of 14) and Robinson (PER of 17) have all been bigger contirbutors to the Knicks amazing surge. For the months of December and January here are estimated Adjusted +/- for some key Knicks:

  • Jeffries +13
  • Gallinari +14
  • Robinson  +9
  • Chandler +8
  • Lee 0

Gallo’s +14 rating indicates that after adjusting for who he played with and against in January, we estimate Gallo has played 14 points better than an average NBA player.

    To justify these estimates look at the following stats for the Knicks last 21 games.

  • With Gallo and Jeffries in the Knicks are 14 points better per game than an average NBA team.
  • The rest of the time the Knicks are 4 points worse than an average NBA team.

For example, when Lee, Gallo and Jeffries are on the floor the Knicks play 15 points better than average; the rest of the time Lee plays the Knicks are average.

   So how can Jeffries with his miserable PER rating of 9 be an effective player? The answer is Jeffries is great on defense. For the season Jeffries has an Adjusted +/- Defensive rating of  -11. This indicates that after adjusting for who he plays with and against, Jeffries causes the Knicks to give up 11 points less per game than an average defender. Bos score states are heavily weighted towards offense, so PER misses Jeffries’ great D.

  In all fairness Adjusted +/- is highly influenced by the coaches’ ability to put together sensible lineups. This is why a player may be traded and go from a good  Adjusted +/- to a medicore Adjusted +/-. But we believe Adjusted +/- gives us a good way to measure a player’s contribution to a team based on how the team used him.


  1. Out of 1850 minutes D’Antoni puts Robinson Chandler Gallinari Jeffries and somebody else on the court together only 36 minutes for the season? They go +27 raw +/- in that time. I can’t say for sure it works not seeing them individually much and off 27 minutes together but I will say putting that quad out there only about 2% of the time looks odd and way short of what I’d do.

    Comment by Crow — January 15, 2010 @ 7:29 pm

  2. Theoretically you could put Robinson Chandler Gallinari Lee Jeffries out there together. Unless I missed out scanning the data I don’t think D’Antoni has used that lineup a single second all season.

    Comment by Crow — January 15, 2010 @ 7:32 pm

  3. Right or wrong. But there isn’t any data basis to say either way. If D’Antoni can find time to try 200 or so other lineups I find it silly and ultimately unacceptable that he has never ever tried this one.

    Comment by Crow — January 15, 2010 @ 7:38 pm

  4. There are so many cases of coaches not trying stuff that the numbers suggest might be worth look at or using it is so little you can’t make a meaningful statistical judgment. It is silly and unacceptable. Even if it comes back not so good in more minutes at least they explored it and got a bit better basis for making that judgment.

    Comment by Crow — January 15, 2010 @ 7:41 pm

  5. Actually this may not be the very best case to criticize a coach.

    Nate Robinson is a handful. And you’d have to check more about the adequacy of Chandler-Gallinari-Jeffries on rebounding and scoring.

    But there are still many cases where low lineup usage should be at least reviewed. Justify it or not. Same for some of the high usage lineups.

    Comment by Crow — January 16, 2010 @ 3:45 pm

  6. [...] <em>is</em> the defense. It’s true. He scores so few points points <a href=“http://waynewinston.com/wordpress/?p=370” target=“_blank”>yet according to guru Wayne Winston (thanks Italian Stallion for the [...]

    Pingback by Knicks Midterm Report Card | The Knicks FanBlog — January 21, 2010 @ 1:03 am

RSS feed for comments on this post. TrackBack URL

Leave a comment

Powered by WordPress