Statistical Analysis. Humor. Knicks.

Monday, April 21, 2014

Knicks 100, Nets 86

Brooklyn Nets 86 Final
Recap | Box Score
100 New York Knicks
Carmelo Anthony, SF 36 MIN | 12-22 FG | 3-3 FT | 3 REB | 1 AST | 31 PTS | +18

Happy Chrimbus, everybody! What did Winter Man leave you under the Chrimbus Bush? Well, for me, it was a healthy, net-splashing Melo. It’s exactly what I wanted. For all of the hullabaloo about the “New Melo”, there are really only two substantial changes to his game. One, when he’s doubled—and at the start of the 2nd half, Brooklyn went so far as to begin sending every bipedal life form at him literally at midcourt—he’s looking for open ‘mates on the weak side as opposed to forcing a contested shot. Two, the move to power forward (as many a wise wag predicted) creates a mismatch no matter who’s guarding him. His dodgy ankle may have kept him from driving the lane as with as much vigor or as frequently as he was prior to getting pretzeled by Dwight Howard (Nope. Not over that yet. Eff you, Dwight!), but when he’s hitting 4 out of his 8 bombs from downtown, it almost doesn’t matter. Oh, and remember to keep your Chrimbus Bush trimmed and wet for Winter Man!

Ronnie Brewer, SF 15 MIN | 1-5 FG | 2-4 FT | 4 REB | 2 AST | 4 PTS | -13

Remember the double-teaming I mentioned one player capsule ago? (I really hope you do. Otherwise you’re suffering from some serious short-term memory loss. Please consult your physician immediately. Then get Oliver Sachs on the blower, pronto. He’ll write up a picayune chapter about your debilitating plight in his next tome.) The reason the Prokorovs felt so comfortable smothering Melo whenever he got his mitts on the rock was that all the early-season delightful twine-tickling from Ronnie is nowhere to be found. And what remains is a series of bricks and ghastly, hesitation-filled attempts that’d make Landry Fields look like Jesus Shuttlesworth. To top it off, Brew seemed to have a really hard time sticking with any and every Nyet he was assigned to cover. Get well soon, Shump. There are bushels of minutes just waiting for you to snaggle.

Tyson Chandler, C 37 MIN | 7-11 FG | 2-2 FT | 12 REB | 2 AST | 16 PTS | +21

We’re starting to run out of superlatives for this cat. Amazingly enough, 7-11 actually represents an off shooting (as it were) night for Tyson, but just as impressive as the rim-rattling alley-oops where each one seemed to possess greater and greater ferocity and acrobatic difficulty, as if there was a wayward East German judge from the Olympics sitting courtside, determining if Tyson would win the Gold, are the tip outs and the ability to prowl the lane, covering for each and every defensive gaffe on the perimeter like an overly-caffeinated middle linebacker. He’s the most irreplaceable player on the Knicks’ roster. Oh yeah. There’s also this.

Jason Kidd, PG 35 MIN | 2-9 FG | 1-2 FT | 8 REB | 5 AST | 7 PTS | +6

Anyone else think Jason’s been reading his own press clippings? Methinks he saw what the ink-stained wretches have been scribbling regarding his sudden transmogrification into a dead-eye three-point marksman. Maybe Isola/Berman left him a message in the bottom of a bottle of Manischewitz or three, and in the midst of an overly-sweet wine hangover, he’s forgotten that a great deal of his long-range success owes to the fact that he’s really only been shooting the widest of wide-open threes. Mind you, all of the dynamite “Sage of the Hardwood” type things that have so endeared this former foe are still in effect—the faster-than-light flicks of a wrist that deflect the ball away from a less-than-cautious ballhandler, the nifty rebounding and especially the way he found Melo as a trailer on the break to keep our star a’ scorchin’ when the Brooklynites were in the midst of deploying their ABC (Anybody. But. Melo.) defensive strategery. That said, in the LA/Cleveland/Houston and now Brooklyn contests, he’s started to heave the leather skyward even when there’s a cat half his age mere inches away from his grill. I’m not complaining (Okay, I am complaining), but mebbe you want to rein it in a bit, kay? Pretty please?

Raymond Felton, PG 32 MIN | 4-15 FG | 0-0 FT | 5 REB | 4 AST | 8 PTS | +15

Oh Ray. The fact that you’re leading the league with 24 alley-oop tosses to your bestie Tyson is swell and the whole limiting turnovers to the absolute minimum (zero tonight) is a huge part of what makes the ‘Bockers so durned efficient but there has to be a better option when the defender goes under the pick and roll than lofting a fadeaway 15 footer or a floater where I can’t tell if it’s a pass a shot or what. To wit: in years past, Felt averaged 3-4 FT’s per 36 minutes. This year, it’s down to 2. Now Bob, you’re probably thinking. What’s the big diff between one fewer trip to the charity stripe? Well, [Insert Your Name Here], it’s the difference between drawing fouls at an average rate for a point and being Jose Calderon, without the Spaniard’s shooting ability. It’s certainly possible that his injured paw(s) is/are bothering him more than he’s letting on, (Bulldog Mentality, dontcha know) but if so, someone should let Ray know that he’s actually hurting the team by not getting right now. If memory serves the exact same thing happened during our first go round with Ray. He started off shooting in the mid/high 40’s, got hurt, and tried to battle through the injury, only to see his shooting percentage plummet to around .411 before he was forced to fill out one of those annoying change of address forms with his local post office. Ray, if you’re reading this, take a game off and chill. Prigs can man the tiller whilst you slather your mitts in Vaseline and cover them with rubber gloves, like the great Dennis Potter had to do daily because his eczema was so bad the skin on his hands would actually crack when he tried to type during a particularly bad outbreak. Everything will be exactly where you left in when you return, I super-promise.

Kurt Thomas, PF 8 MIN | 0-0 FG | 1-2 FT | 1 REB | 0 AST | 1 PTS | -3

At the end of the first half, Kurt got bonked during his slower-than-Molasses-being-shown-in-slow-motion dives to the hoop, resulting in some fidgeting with his contacts. When the camera returned to Kurt sitting on the bench, maybe it’s just me, but it almost seemed as if the aforementioned whack uncrossed his eyes. DON’T SMACK THE CRAZY OUT OF OUR KURT. WE’S GONNA NEED IT FOR THE PLAYOFFS.

Chris Copeland, SF 23 MIN | 3-4 FG | 0-0 FT | 1 REB | 0 AST | 8 PTS | +10

Steve had an upset tummy today (as friend-of-the-blog Seth Rosenthal noted, it’s highly likely that when Stevak hurls, he does so into a bucket placed exactly 23’ away, just so his form doesn’t suffer during his illness-induced absence) so Cope got to spin with the second unit, managing to perform a reasonable Novakaine imitation, save he actually hit a shot and in the painted area and the fact that, visually-speaking, he may resemble Steve Novak less than any other sentient being with opposable thumbs.

Pablo Prigioni, PG 14 MIN | 2-5 FG | 0-0 FT | 0 REB | 2 AST | 6 PTS | -4

That was Prig’s finest stint since the game when he logged some serious minutes back on I’m too lazy to comb through basketball-reference.com and look it up. For the majority of the year, he’s seemed to have an iron-clad 12 minute limit on his floor time, regardless of how well the erstwhile starter is doing (YES, RAY, YOUR EARS SHOULD BE RED. I’M DEFINITELY TALKING ABOUT YOU.) but tonight, the bulk of the game-changing 23-7 run extending from the middle of the third to the beginning of the fourth occurred when the comely Argentine gentleman scholar was at the wheel and Son of Wood, shockingly, let the man play on. I’m just spitballin’ here, but maybe, after a good 15 years of starting in Europe, Prigs is just hard-wired to absorb the flow of the game before getting his shwerve on, rather than gunning from Jump Street, like one would hope of a quality sub. In any case, it’s always fun to watch Prigs thrive. Right, Coach?

James White, SG 2 MIN | 0-1 FG | 0-0 FT | 0 REB | 0 AST | 0 PTS | -4

It should be noted that our athletic swingman suffers from a slight case of body dysmorphia.

J.R. Smith, SG 37 MIN | 7-11 FG | 4-4 FT | 5 REB | 3 AST | 19 PTS | +24

Well hi there, early season J.R.! Welcome back. Whether it was the yeoman defensive effort, the wrangling of many a long rebound, the sopping-wet jumper, the Euro-steps to the tin or the oh-so-gorgeous feed of Tyson Chandler as the shot clock was about to expire, that was definitely Earl’s best outing since…now it’s way too late to check old boxscores on basketball-reference. What are you doing awake at this hour, anyway? Go to bed. Get some rest, already. No, no…there isn’t any leftover pie. You’re going to eat pie at 2 in the morning? You know what that does to your stomach. Besides, J.R. Smith will be dropping by in a few hours after an evening of carousing and I’m saving the last slice for him. He deserves it after tonight’s performance. Love you too, Sweetums. Kiss.

Five Things We Saw

  1. Is it just me, or does it seem like these teams play each other every week? The old saw about familiarity breeding contempt certainly comes to mind. There’s part of this still-embryonic rivalry that feels like so much artificial, PR/Media-inspired hogwash, but as I’ve said before, there are 3-4 Men in Black who get on my nerves like fingers on a blackboard while chewing on aluminum foil and hearing an impatient five-year old ask, “Why?” to the point that you just want to bellow, “BECAUSE, THAT’S WHY.” As such, it was nice to whomp on our fellow Big Apple residents, but not in a manner in which it seemed any overdue effort or exertion was required. It was a solid, professional win; the kind of victory that the traditional powers—Miami, Boston, San Antonio—enjoy with the casual indifference of a good, regular bowel movement.
  2. You know who else doesn’t like the Nets? Chris Copeland, that’s who.

    STARING CONTEST, MOFOS!

  3. The Nets D is…er…not good. It’s not like this was some Spock-type, multi-level chess shit either. Brooklyn decided they had to stop Melo if they were to prove triumphant (an odd conclusion, considering they were only down four at the half). For the beginning of the third, though, it seemed like a genius maneuver, mainly because they were funneling the ball into Ronnie’s bent arms. Once Woody subbed Earl back in (and yeah, that took waaaaaaaaaaayyyyyy too long to occur) the floor was once again properly spaced for the Felton-Chandler pick and roll at the top of the key. I need to watch this chunk of the game again, but I’m pretty sure the ‘Bockers ran the exact same play for 5-6 consecutive trips down the floor, each time resulting in a Tyson smash or a pinging of the ball around the perimeter to an open three point shooter. Call me crazy, but it seems like there’s a pretty basic countermove available: the defender goes under the pick and gives Ray-Ray the wide open 15 footer. Whether they couldn’t deduce what was going wrong or simply don’t possess the talent to execute properly remains a mystery. In either case, these guys ain’t too good, defensively-speaking.
  4. Just wait. To paraphrase John Paul Jones, I have not yet begun to rip the Nyets. Sure it’s mean to kick a fella when he’s down (They’ve dropped 8 of the last 10.) but who said I was just your garden-variety nice Jewish Boy? On offense, throughout the first half, they were having a goodly amount of success running both the Joe Johnson/Deron and the Brook/Deron pick and roll, leading to some face-to-the-desk moments from your humble correspondent when the Knicks (predictably) switched and/or doubled freeing up wide open shooters like the immortal Keith Bogans banging home trey after trey. But when the 2nd half started, they gorted a couple of threes and for some reason, decided that ISO-Player X was the path to their salvation. By now you’ve probably seen Deron’s slambook of Avery’s play calling. Honestly, after witnessing what went down tonight, I might be inclined to agree with ol’ Neckbeard.
  5. And that’ll just about do it. For any of those who were worried after yet another drubbing by the Houston RockLins, tonight’s game was a welcome reassurance that all is right and noble and holy and good in Knickville. We’re 19-6. The last two times the Orange and Blue started out that well? Oh, just during the 1969-70 and 1972-73 season. If memory serves, those years ended well, n’est pas?

    See you on Friday. You know, as long as the world doesn’t end. That’d really suck.

60 comments on “Knicks 100, Nets 86

  1. Owen

    (as friend-of-the-blog Seth Rosenthal noted, it’s highly likely that when Stevak hurls, he does so into a bucket placed exactly 23’ away, just so his form doesn’t suffer during his illness-induced absence)

    That was classic…..

    Very nice writeup….

  2. BigBlueAL

    Screw the Nets, I was thrilled with the ass-whooping the Knicks gave them in the 2nd half. It was all the Nets lovers (fans but mostly media) who before the season and even at the beginning when they won the 1st meeting and both teams were 9-4 were all talking about how they were the best team in NY. Their players, ownership and even their beat writers before the season were so obsessed about being them being the best team in NY and making it a Nets city. Screw them!!

    P.S. My hatred of the Nets goes back to the Derrick Coleman/Kenny Anderson years when they had the audacity to talk crap about the Knicks and act like they were the better team. In 1994 when they met in the 1st round they actually thought they had a chance because they took the season series since they played every game during the regular season vs the Knicks like it was the NBA Finals. If it wasnt for a fluke overtime win in Game 3 the Knicks wouldve swept them, rather easily too.

  3. Frank

    Obviously a small sample, and his D leaves a lot to be desired, but how does Grunwald keep finding guys like Copeland?

    Per -36:
    23.5 points, 3.7 rebounds (yuck), 54.7% FG, 53.3% 3P, TS 62.7.

    In the last 2 years, guys picked up off the scrap heap for vet’s minimums and turned into valuable contributors:

    Lin
    Novak
    Rasheed
    Copeland
    Prigioni
    Brewer (although rapidly becoming less valuable as time goes on)

    Re: Brewer – seriously — a -13 in 15 minutes in a game we won by 14? Not sure what happened to his funky jumper, but he is missing by huge amounts now – even worse than Landry Fields did. It’s like the ghost of Landry has possessed him.

    btw, what does Harden do that gets him to the line so much?

  4. briand

    Frank: Obviously a small sample, and his D leaves a lot to be desired, but how does Grunwald keep finding guys like Copeland?Per -36:23.5 points, 3.7 rebounds (yuck), 54.7% FG, 53.3% 3P, TS 62.7.In the last 2 years, guys picked up off the scrap heap for vet’s minimums and turned into valuable contributors:LinNovakRasheedCopelandPrigioniBrewer (although rapidly becoming less valuable as time goes on)Re: Brewer – seriously — a -13 in 15 minutes in a game we won by 14? Not sure what happened to his funky jumper, but he is missing by huge amounts now – even worse than Landry Fields did. It’s like the ghost of Landry has possessed him. btw, what does Harden do that gets him to the line so much?

    From what I have seen of Harden, he has the unique way of sort of sticking his arms out when he drives. Defenders see the ball away from his body and can’t help themselves from taking a swipe, only to often times hit only arm. I’m sure there are other things he does as well, but this one thing always stands out to me when I watch him.

  5. Juany8

    Frank:
    Obviously a small sample, and his D leaves a lot to be desired, but how does Grunwald keep finding guys like Copeland?

    Per -36:
    23.5 points, 3.7 rebounds (yuck), 54.7% FG, 53.3% 3P, TS 62.7.

    In the last 2 years, guys picked up off the scrap heap for vet’s minimums and turned into valuable contributors:

    Lin
    Novak
    Rasheed
    Copeland
    Prigioni
    Brewer (although rapidly becoming less valuable as time goes on)

    Re: Brewer – seriously — a -13 in 15 minutes in a game we won by 14?Not sure what happened to his funky jumper, but he is missing by huge amounts now – even worse than Landry Fields did. It’s like the ghost of Landry has possessed him.

    btw, what does Harden do that gets him to the line so much?

    Harden runs the pick and roll really well, and he reaches out his arms way out to draw defenders into trying to swipe the ball away, causing a ton of fouls. Harden is going to be one of the absolute best pick and roll players in the league one day, but he really needs to add more diversity to his game. Teams that can effectively trap the pick and roll in the playoffs will destroy that.

  6. Juany8

    briand: From what I have seen of Harden, he has the unique way of sort of sticking his arms out when he drives.Defenders see the ball away from his body and can’t help themselves from taking a swipe, only to often times hit only arm.I’m sure there are other things he does as well, but this one thing always stands out to me when I watch him.

    Haha yea seems like we’re on the same page on this, he also kicks his head back remarkably well, which is obviously a type of flop but it works. Not my favorite style of play personally but it’s extremely effective as long as he’s getting the calls

  7. jon abbey

    Harden travels constantly also on those drives, no idea why they don’t call it more often (or ever).

  8. briand

    Juany8: Haha yea seems like we’re on the same page on this, he also kicks his head back remarkably well, which is obviously a type of flop but it works. Not my favorite style of play personally but it’s extremely effective as long as he’s getting the calls

    I seem to remembers the Thunder having some success running some straight iso’s for Harden…maybe thats the antidote if teams constantly trap the P&R.

    Also, maybe I’m being swayed by how well they have played against the Knicks this year, but I really like the Rockets young core of Harden, Lin, Parson and Asik. They are all between the ages of 23 and 26 and all can really play. They are probably a star away from being an actual contender, but its a good start. I actually think Josh Smith would be a really nice fit for them.

  9. johnno

    Re: the Nets — I think that their current problems can be summed up pretty simply – their two “stars” aren’t playing like max players. If Johnson and Williams play like all-stars, the Nets will be a very good team. If they play like they are currently playing, the Nets are slightly better than a .500 team. By the way, I really like Gerald Wallace as a player, but he is one of the most overpaid guys in the league. He is the quintessential MLE-type player.

  10. ephus

    Late in the game, the Knicks ran a set with Kidd in the post that led to an open Carmelo jumper from the foul line. I think this was the play that Kidd diagrammed in the huddle. Felton brought the ball up on the right side, with Kidd on the right block, Smith in the right corner, ‘Melo on the left block and Chandler on the left elbow. When Felton sent the entry pass to Kidd on the right block, Chandler ran a pin down screen for ‘Melo. ‘Melo was wide open for an easy 15′ shot. Really tough to defend that play, because if Chandler’s man switches on to ‘Melo, Tyson rolls all the way to the basket for a Tyson Smash. If Felton’s man cheats towards the foul line, Felton is wide open at the three point line.

  11. Juany8

    briand: I seem to remembers the Thunder having some success running some straight iso’s for Harden…maybe thats the antidote if teams constantly trap the P&R.

    Also, maybe I’m being swayed by how well they have played against the Knicks this year, but I really like the Rockets young core of Harden, Lin, Parson and Asik. They are all between the ages of 23 and 26 and all can really play.They are probably a star away from being an actual contender, but its a good start.I actually think Josh Smith would be a really nice fit for them.

    I agree briand, with some time to grow and develop together they could be a nice unit, and although they don;t have a set PF of the future, they do have several players with some solid upside they can try to develop. Not gonna lie though, I’m gonna be pissed if the rockets get the 14th seed again

  12. Juany8

    ephus:
    Late in the game, the Knicks ran a set with Kidd in the post that led to an open Carmelo jumper from the foul line.I think this was the play that Kidd diagrammed in the huddle.Felton brought the ball up on the right side, with Kidd on the right block, Smith in the right corner, ‘Melo on the left block and Chandler on the left elbow.When Felton sent the entry pass to Kidd on the right block, Chandler ran a pin down screen for ‘Melo.‘Melo was wide open for an easy 15? shot.Really tough to defend that play, because if Chandler’s man switches on to ‘Melo, Tyson rolls all the way to the basket for a Tyson Smash.If Felton’s man cheats towards the foul line, Felton is wide open at the three point line.

    I liked the play where Melo and Chandler just both set picks along the 3 point line and Felton just went along both of them to get free. Nobody on the defense was prepared to defend it and it resulted in an easy Chandler lob. Teams will stick close to Melo and have a hard time simply switching on Felton, they have to keep a lot of people in a good spot to defend, and most teams aren’t that disciplined. The Mavericks ran this play very well with Terry and Barea instead of felton, and it often had wonderful results. Woodson has diagrammed some incredible plays involving both Melo and Chandler this season

  13. d-mar

    johnno:
    Re: the Nets — I think that their current problems can be summed up pretty simply – their two “stars” aren’t playing like max players.If Johnson and Williams play like all-stars, the Nets will be a very good team.If they play like they are currently playing, the Nets are slightly better than a .500 team.By the way, I really like Gerald Wallace as a player, but he is one of the most overpaid guys in the league.He is the quintessential MLE-type player.

    I’m not even sure it’s just about Johnson and Williams. The Nets have lost games where they both have played well, but the team goes into total meltdown in the 4th quarter. I’m not sure if that’s a personnel or coaching issue. Also, they’re not a very good rebounding team (and that’s supposed to be Humphries’ strength), and I think their bench is mediocre at best – Blatche, Evans, Watson, Bogans – doesn’t do much for me. I see them as a 45-47 win team.

  14. chrisk06811

    I know I don’t contribute much here; there are better minds at work. but….can anyone think of a good reason we don’t call Chris Copeland “vanilli”???

  15. ephus

    Juany8 — Woodson has been running that double pick really effectively. It works even better when Novak is on the floor, because teams cannot cheat off of him.

    Woodson has to be the leader for COY. Before the season, the Knicks were a consensus 7 seed (although most of this board had the Knicks as at least a 4 seed). Woodson has managed ‘Melo extremely well and gotten great results from JR Smith. It seems like everyone (except maybe Camby) is buying into the system.

    This is a great time to be a Knick fan.

  16. chrisk06811

    I can’t wait for Amare to come back. The knocks on him are mainly defense / rebounding, but we need his offense. Reading the above, plus the last bunch of games, we have a set of guys (Novak, Kidd, Sheed) who only shoot 3′s, which is fine….others (Prigs, Brewer, Thomas) who really can’t shoot at all. Tyson dunks. Only JR and Melo create. No wonder Felton is forcing shots….someone has to; Amare should be a big help. There are plenty of minutes for him. It will be interesting to see how he fits in with the team (melo and tyson’s team) but…since he got to NY he’s said the right thing.

  17. Frank

    Obviously a great win last night – but I was happiest to see Tyson play like a DPOY again. Lopez looked pretty terrible except for a couple of plays in the 1st quarter, and even most of his shots that went in were highly contested. 12 rebounds, 3 blocks,only 2 fouls against what is a pretty active Nets frontline – very impressive. And very few easy buckets at the rim for the Nets – that level of rim protection is what we were missing.

    Re: Amare’s return – I hope that doesn’t mean Copeland gets buried. He is really playing well.

  18. flossy

    If Amar’e Stoudemire comes back and plays at a high level on both ends of the floor, he can use Chris Copeland as a foot rest for all I care.

  19. Juany8

    Frank:
    Obviously a great win last night – but I was happiest to see Tyson play like a DPOY again. Lopez looked pretty terrible except for a couple of plays in the 1st quarter, and even most of his shots that went in were highly contested.12 rebounds, 3 blocks,only 2 fouls against what is a pretty active Nets frontline – very impressive. And very few easy buckets at the rim for the Nets – that level of rim protection is what we were missing.

    Re: Amare’s return – I hope that doesn’t mean Copeland gets buried. He is really playing well.

    I agree Frank, Chandler looked awesome on both ends last night. The last 2 games he looked pretty mediocre defensively, if he’s playing like this every game he definitely deserves DPOY.

  20. ephus

    Juany8: I agree Frank, Chandler looked awesome on both ends last night. The last 2 games he looked pretty mediocre defensively, if he’s playing like this every game he definitely deserves DPOY.

    Since Dwight Howard has taken himself out of the running for DPOY, I think TC’s main competition is Tony Allen, Kevin Garnett and LBJ.

  21. Frank

    ephus: Since Dwight Howard has taken himself out of the running for DPOY, I think TC’s main competition is Tony Allen, Kevin Garnett and LBJ.

    And Ibaka, who in the few games I’ve seen him play, seems to have ratcheted up his skills on both sides of the ball. But like Juany8 says – it TC does like he did against the Nets, he’ll win it again.

  22. Juany8

    So I read this interesting Q&A with Berri just now. He actually comes off as diplomatic, measured, and reasonable. Even after constantly attacking PER he manages to be respectful of Hollinger and admits that a dedicated scouting department and good coaching is necessary to truly evaluate players properly. Seems open to the idea that WP doesn’t contain all you need to properly evaluate players.

    http://www.3sob.com/december-2012/david-berri-educates-us-on-john-hollinger/5515/

  23. Juany8

    Frank: And Ibaka, who in the few games I’ve seen him play, seems to have ratcheted up his skills on both sides of the ball.But like Juany8 says – it TC does like he did against the Nets, he’ll win it again.

    Actually I think the clear cut favorite right now should be Noah, I’m assuming both of you guys just forgot him :) Varejao should probably be up there too, although I don’t think Lebron should even make the first team with the type of defense he generally plays. Being an awesome defender is very different from consistently playing like one, and Lebron doesn’t even consistently guard power forwards like Melo often has to.

  24. Frank

    Thanks for the link on Berri Juany- he does sound pretty reasonable — especially this:

    ““…one cannot end the analysis when one has measured the value of player performance. Knowing the value of each player is only the starting point of analysis. The next step is determining why the player is productive or unproductive. In our view, this is where coaching should begin. We think we can offer a reasonable measure of a player’s productivity. Although we have offered some insights into why players are productive, ultimately this question can only be answered by additional scrutiny into the age and injury status of the player, the construction of a team, and the roles the player plays on the floor.”

    In sum, we can tell you how productive a player has been. But why that player is productive requires a bit more effort.”

    So basically he’s saying that roles are important, team construction (“chemistry”) is important.

  25. Nick C.

    Juany8:
    So I read this interesting Q&A with Berri just now. He actually comes off as diplomatic, measured, and reasonable. Even after constantly attacking PER he manages to be respectful of Hollinger and admits that a dedicated scouting department and good coaching is necessary to truly evaluate players properly. Seems open to the idea that WP doesn’t contain all you need to properly evaluate players.

    http://www.3sob.com/december-2012/david-berri-educates-us-on-john-hollinger/5515/

    I donno he still doesn’t acknowledge that he came up with the figures for team wins and parcels out credit to individuals. Essentially everyone should rebound and only shoot uncontested layups. He won’t admit it but an offensive player who passes up contested shots and let the shot clock expire would not be penalized and in fact probably eliminates the shot that has a thirty percent chance of being made from dragging down his FG% thereby backhandedly is rewarded.

  26. Juany8

    Nick C.: I donno he still doesn’t acknowledge that he came up with the figures for team wins and parcels out credit to individuals.Essentially everyone should rebound and only shoot uncontested layups. He won’t admit it but an offensive player who passes up contested shots and let the shot clock expire would not be penalized and in fact probably eliminates the shot that has a thirty percent chance of being made from dragging down his FG% thereby backhandedly is rewarded.

    Yea I made a point about this the other day, WP penalizes way too many contextually good plays. Shots should be compared to what other shots would be available, not to arbitrary positional averages, you can’t penalize a good basketball play or reward a bad one.

  27. ephus

    I meant to include Noah. He clearly is in the mix. I do not think we will see Sideshow Bob in the mix, just because the Cavs have such awful overall team defense.

  28. Nick C.

    Juany8: Yea I made a point about this the other day, WP penalizes way too many contextually good plays. Shots should be compared to what other shots would be available, not to arbitrary positional averages, you can’t penalize a good basketball play or reward a bad one.

    you would think something along the lines of Dewans defensive +/- from baseball would be possible where a play (shot) is compared to similar history of same with an expected success % and the results calculated accordingly.

  29. Juany8

    Nick C.: you would think something along the lines of Dewans defensive +/- from baseball would be possible where a play (shot) is compared to similar history of same with an expected success % and the results calculated accordingly.

    I think that’s the idea behind DVOA for football too actually. it wouldn’t be perfect still, but it would be a much closer approximation of what’s actually happening offensively. On that note, I don’t see why shot areas and shot clock time left aren’t kept track of in a better way. It’s hard to gauge how open someone is when shooting, but it’s not so hard to see if he was shooting with 20 seconds left or 2 seconds left. That alone would probably provide a lot of the information needed to re evaluate shooting percentage

  30. maxwell_3g

    johnno:
    Re: the Nets — I think that their current problems can be summed up pretty simply – their two “stars” aren’t playing like max players.If Johnson and Williams play like all-stars, the Nets will be a very good team.If they play like they are currently playing, the Nets are slightly better than a .500 team.By the way, I really like Gerald Wallace as a player, but he is one of the most overpaid guys in the league.He is the quintessential MLE-type player.

    the prolem is that Joe Johnson is not a star. take it from an ATL resident. there is a reason that Hawks fans were ready to build a statue for Danny Ferry when he unloaded Johnson. The Nets are going to grow to regret that trade

  31. The Honorable Cock Jowles

    Nick C.: Essentially everyone should rebound and only shoot uncontested layups.

    This is ridiculous. Look at the list of top players according to WP in 2011.

    http://wagesofwins.com/wins-produced-2011/

    Paul? Howard? Love? James? Wade? Gasol? Nash? [Not Fields]

    Rondo? Allen? Randolph?

    Which of those players, WHO LED THE LEAGUE ACCORDING TO THE STATISTIC, fit that description?

    You’re talking out of your ass. That is a list of high usage, high efficiency players.

  32. Juany8

    The Honorable Cock Jowles: This is ridiculous. Look at the list of top players according to WP in 2011.

    http://wagesofwins.com/wins-produced-2011/

    Paul? Howard? Love? James? Wade? Gasol? Nash? [Not Fields]

    Rondo? Allen? Randolph?

    Which of those players, WHO LED THE LEAGUE ACCORDING TO THE STATISTIC, fit that description?

    You’re talking out of your ass. That is a list of high usage, high efficiency players.

    From the same year, Reggie Evans, Chris Andersen, Jeff Foster, Kris Humpries, and Ronnie Brewer are in the top ten in WP48. On a per minute basis, Chris Andersen was a better played than Lebron James. Funny how you have to result to outright bullshit to try to save your stat, the biggest disparity between perceived value and predicted value in WP comes from guys like Chandler and Reggie Evans. Every single statistical model lists guys like Lebron James and Dwight Howard as superstars, most models don’t suggest the Mavs would have benefitted from trading Dirk for Kris Humpries in 2011

  33. Nick C.

    The list is a mixed bag. It does nave most of the best along with some of the “efficiency experts.” It’s good. It’s better than what was used before. But I have yet to see how what may well be accurate as it relates to wins on a team level necessarily should be parceled out individually. But I am repeating myself over and over. The WOW site doesn’t seem very conversationally interactive so I am left to muse here.

  34. flossy

    Juany8: From the same year, Reggie Evans, Chris Andersen, Jeff Foster, Kris Humpries, and Ronnie Brewer are in the top ten in WP48. On a per minute basis, Chris Andersen was a better played than Lebron James. Funny how you have to result to outright bullshit to try to save your stat, the biggest disparity between perceived value and predicted value in WP comes from guys like Chandler and Reggie Evans. Every single statistical model lists guys like Lebron James and Dwight Howard as superstars, most models don’t suggest the Mavs would have benefitted from trading Dirk for Kris Humpries in 2011

    You mean to say Dave Berri figured out that Chris Paul, Dwight Howard, LeBron James, etc. are the best players in the league? What is he, some kind of wizard?

  35. flossy

    flossy: You mean to say Dave Berri figured out that Chris Paul, Dwight Howard, LeBron James, etc. are the best players in the league?What is he, some kind of wizard?

    Oops, quoted the wrong comment.

  36. DRed

    Juany8: From the same year, Reggie Evans, Chris Andersen, Jeff Foster, Kris Humpries, and Ronnie Brewer are in the top ten in WP48. On a per minute basis, Chris Andersen was a better played than Lebron James. Funny how you have to result to outright bullshit to try to save your stat, the biggest disparity between perceived value and predicted value in WP comes from guys like Chandler and Reggie Evans. Every single statistical model lists guys like Lebron James and Dwight Howard as superstars, most models don’t suggest the Mavs would have benefitted from trading Dirk for Kris Humpries in 2011

    That’s not true. On a per minute basis by WP48 Lebron was better than Chris Anderson in 2011. Significantly. Maybe you mean 2010? He slightly edged out Lebron in 2010, but he played only 700 minutes, to Lebron’s 3000.

  37. Juany8

    DRed: That’s not true.On a per minute basis by WP48 Lebron was better than Chris Anderson in 2011.Significantly.Maybe you mean 2010?He slightly edged out Lebron in 2010, but he played only 700 minutes, to Lebron’s 3000.

    It’s the 2010-2011 season, the Finals for the year were played in 2011, so we’re both right in a way. Still doesn’t change the fact that WP48 suggests Anderson is near the same level as Lebron on a per minute basis. Can you say with a straight face that guys like Marcus Camby were anywhere near as productive per minute as Lebron? Do you realize the WoW site wrote an article saying Fields was better than Rose and that Humpries was better than Dirk the year they went on to win MVP and Finals MVP respectively?

    You want to tell me that Evans is underrated and Melo overrated fine, I can appreciate that kind of argument. Don’t tell me that Reggie Evans is a super star and Melo a scrub though, you could never study a basketball game and come away with that impression.

  38. jon abbey

    yeah, it’s pretty clear that WP48 overvalues one-dimensional rebounders even more than the basketball world has ever overvalued bulk scorers. the term ‘advanced metrics’ shouldn’t even apply to WP48, it should be the opposite, maybe a ‘remedial metric’?

  39. Juany8

    jon abbey:
    yeah, it’s pretty clear that WP48 overvalues one-dimensional rebounders even more than the basketball world has ever overvalued bulk scorers. the term ‘advanced metrics’ shouldn’t even apply to WP48, it should be the opposite, maybe a ‘remedial metric’?

    The funniest part about the whole thing is that there IS a skillset that is heavily undervalued by the general basketball community, but it’s not rebounding or efficient low usage scoring, it’s defense. A guy like Ibaka gets called a first team all defensive player because he gets a lot of blocks, there needs to be some kind of defensive WP stat that calls bullshit and points out that Ibaka (probably) has a terrible block to block attempt ratio. A guy like Jeremy Lin shouldn’t get a bunch of defensive credit for steals then he smashes into screens and allows point guards to do as they please every other game.

    There are legitimately undervalued assets to be had out there, and Berri tried to make Kris Humpries and Faried the stars. I’ll take Taj Gibson and laugh when even Lebron James has trouble getting past him. I’ll take an elite defender over an efficient scorer every day

  40. MoogSM

    Good win, bad writeup. There’s more jokes than content, and they weren’t that clever or funny. Can’t win ‘em all, I suppose.

  41. DRed

    jon abbey:
    yeah, it’s pretty clear that WP48 overvalues one-dimensional rebounders even more than the basketball world has ever overvalued bulk scorers. the term ‘advanced metrics’ shouldn’t even apply to WP48, it should be the opposite, maybe a ‘remedial metric’?

    Marcus Camby was never a one dimensional rebounder. He was one of the best centers in the league at rebounding, passing, steals and obviously shot blocking. He didn’t turn the ball over, and didn’t foul. Chris Anderson was also a great shot blocker. The one things those guys weren’t good at were high volume scoring. Is is that hard to believe that a center who was significantly better than average at everything but scoring was might be a really valuable player to have?

    Reggie Evans is pretty much a one dimensional rebounder. But he’s also never been as valuable as Camby or Lebron. This year he’s shooting (in his limited fashion) at a much higher rate than his career average. His TS% is 7 points above his career average, and he’ll probably regress. But he’s really an incredible rebounder. I’d take him on my team.

  42. jon abbey

    MoogSM:
    Good win, bad writeup.There’s more jokes than content, and they weren’t that clever or funny.Can’t win ‘em all, I suppose.

    this applies to every Robert Silverman recap IMO, I find them pretty much unreadable and never make it all the way through. sorry, my two cents…

  43. jon abbey

    DRed: Marcus Camby was never a one dimensional rebounder.He was one of the best centers in the league at rebounding, passing, steals and obviously shot blocking.He didn’t turn the ball over, and didn’t foul.Chris Anderson was also a great shot blocker.The one things those guys weren’t good at were high volume scoring.Is is that hard to believe that a center who was significantly better than average at everything but scoring was might be a really valuable player to have?

    Reggie Evans is pretty much a one dimensional rebounder.But he’s also never been as valuable as Camby or Lebron.This year he’s shooting (in his limited fashion) at a much higher rate than his career average.His TS% is 7 points above his career average, and he’ll probably regress.But he’s really an incredible rebounder.I’d take him on my team.

    Jeff Foster? Kris Humphries? you’d take Evans on your team, but you wouldn’t build your team around him or probably even start him.

    the WP48 list linked to above (http://wagesofwins.com/wins-produced-2011/, sort by WP48) speaks for itself, valuing rebounding and shooting as little as possible over pretty much every other skill set in the game.

  44. jon abbey

    Juany8: The funniest part about the whole thing is that there IS a skillset that is heavily undervalued by the general basketball community, but it’s not rebounding or efficient low usage scoring, it’s defense. A guy like Ibaka gets called a first team all defensive player because he gets a lot of blocks, there needs to be some kind of defensive WP stat that calls bullshit and points out that Ibaka (probably) has a terrible block to block attempt ratio. A guy like Jeremy Lin shouldn’t get a bunch of defensive credit for steals then he smashes into screens and allows point guards to do as they please every other game.

    if someone could solidly quantify defense somehow and add in “percentage of defensive attention commanded” by an offensive player, they’d be making real progress.

  45. hnwingo

    jon abbey: this applies to every Robert Silverman recap IMO, I find them pretty much unreadable and never make it all the way through. sorry, my two cents…

    Robert has some excellent basketball acumen; that bad Ray is like Calderon without the jump shot was interesting as one example. Please Robert cut out 75% of the humor and non basketball inside reference es. Your writing will sparkle then. As Strunk and White stress: “omit needless words.”

  46. DRed

    jon abbey: Jeff Foster? Kris Humphries? you’d take Evans on your team, but you wouldn’t build your team around him or probably even start him.

    the WP48 list linked to above (http://wagesofwins.com/wins-produced-2011/, sort by WP48) speaks for itself, valuing rebounding and shooting as little as possible over pretty much every other skill set in the game.

    No, I wouldn’t build a team around Reggie Evans. But I’d sure as shit take him over Jamal Crawford. I’d take Kris Humphries over Eddy Curry.

    Wins Produced doesn’t value shooting as little as possible. That’s a total misrepresentation. It subtracts value for missing. Someone like Kevin Durant, who shoots a lot, has a really high WP48, not because he doesn’t shoot a lot, but because he doesn’t miss a lot when he shoots.

  47. jon abbey

    but no one makes an actual choice between Reggie Evans and Jamal Crawford, that’s like saying I’d rather play with a right fielder than a shortstop. Berri’s rankings are wildly skewed toward power forwards, rebounds are nowhere near as valuable on an individual level as he gives them credit for.

  48. DRed

    Reggie Evans is making 5 million for the next three years. Jamal Crawford makes 5 million a year (and he used to get paid a lot more) Teams choose to value inefficient, one dimensional scorers like Crawford more than someone like Evans.

    What’s your research showing that rebounds aren’t as valuable? Maybe rebounds are overvalued in WP, but rebounds are certainly more valuable than missed shots. NBA execs have shown repeatedly that they don’t care how much you miss as long as you score. Think of it this way. Reggie and Jamal both have basically one skill. Jamal scores points and Reggie rebounds. Getting rebounds actually helps you win basketball games. Shooting inefficiently doesn’t.

  49. jon abbey

    DRed:
    Shooting inefficiently doesn’t.

    Allen Iverson carried a team to the Finals while shooting inefficiently, and there have been plenty of recent studies about the debatable value of offensive rebounds, we’ve talked about those more than a few times here and I’m sure you’re aware of them.

    everything is context-driven in the NBA: for instance, the better your team defense is, the less efficient your shooting needs to be for the team to be successful.

  50. Juany8

    DRed:
    Reggie Evans is making 5 million for the next three years.Jamal Crawford makes 5 million a year (and he used to get paid a lot more)Teams choose to value inefficient, one dimensional scorers like Crawford more than someone like Evans.

    What’s your research showing that rebounds aren’t as valuable?Maybe rebounds are overvalued in WP, but rebounds are certainly more valuable than missed shots.NBA execs have shown repeatedly that they don’t care how much you miss as long as you score.Think of it this way.Reggie and Jamal both have basically one skill.Jamal scores points and Reggie rebounds.Getting rebounds actually helps you win basketball games.Shooting inefficiently doesn’t.

    But I think Jamal Crawford is a piece of shit player, and a major part of the reason is that he can’t defend. I don’t argue that front offices universally have it right, but some of the smart ones are certainly making more informed and well reasoned decisions than any person on the internet. You want to tell me that guys like Al Harrington and Jamal Crawford are barely positive? Fine by me, they really can’t do anything except take a large volume of bad shots. I think they have SOME value in the right context, but they’re certainly not worth much more than the mini mid level, there is no competition between someone like Ray Allen and someone like Jamal Crawford.

    Biggest straw men in all this argument is that Melo’s major “skill” is just shooting a lot. Coaches like Greg Poppovich don’t abandon their standard defense and sell out with hard double teams to stop Ben Gordon, he does that to stop Kobe and Melo. I don’t care about the shots, I care about the space that opens up when defenses prioritize stopping a guy like Melo over stopping a guy like Steve Novak. I also care about the number of shots they can take with low turnovers

  51. Juany8

    jon abbey: Allen Iverson carried a team to the Finals while shooting inefficiently, and there have been plenty of recent studies about the debatable value of offensive rebounds, we’ve talked about those more than a few times here and I’m sure you’re aware of them.

    everything is context-driven in the NBA: for instance, the better your team defense is, the less efficient your shooting needs to be for the team to be successful.

    It’s not the value of offensive rebounds that’s debatable per se, it’s the value of game planning around getting offensive rebounds. I’ve written at length about this, and I’m pretty sure there has been more than one study posted on here about it, but it’s a nonlinear optimization problem between the value of getting an offensive rebound and the cost of giving up defensive position if you fail. A team like Chicago that has players like Noah, Gibson, Deng, and Rose can both crash the boards and run back fast enough with big enough players to slow down the opposition and play excellent defense. Older teams like the Knicks, Celtics, and Spurs, teams who can’t be expending too much energy every single game of the season like the Bulls do, prefer to play solid defense and make their opponents work for their shots.

    There isn’t one answer, it depends on your personnel. Still like my solution of making the offensive rebound erase the missed shot. Not some “Kobe Assist”, and this actually gives offensive rebounders the same credit for “shot creation” that other players do. THCJ is right in a way, offensive rebounds are a form of shot creation, but not a way of creating a new possession. If the defense can’t secure the rebound then it’s like they never played defense in the first place

  52. The Honorable Cock Jowles

    jon abbey: this applies to every Robert Silverman recap IMO, I find them pretty much unreadable and never make it all the way through. sorry, my two cents…

    Blithering fuckwit.

  53. jon abbey

    I wouldn’t go that far, I just think he should tone down the humor a lot, but you’re certainly entitled to your opinion.

    :)

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