Statistical Analysis. Humor. Knicks.

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Knicks Morning News (2014.06.12)

  • [New York Daily News] Lawrence: Melo & LeBron together at last? Not so fast (Thu, 12 Jun 2014 00:50:11 GMT)
    This wasn’t the time or place to get LeBron James talking about his future and whether he plans on joining forces with Carmelo Anthony, here or in New York.

  • [New York Times] Trial Will Decide Which Sterling Controls LA Clippers (Thu, 12 Jun 2014 08:34:14 GMT)
    Shelly Sterling on Wednesday was granted a trial next month in Los Angeles to resolve a dispute with her estranged husband Donald Sterling over who controls the NBA’s Los Angeles Clippers, leaving its $2 billion sale up in the air.

  • [New York Times] 5 Things to Watch in Game 4 of the NBA Finals (Thu, 12 Jun 2014 07:25:24 GMT)
    The Spurs are old.

  • [New York Times] Sports Briefing | Basketball: Blatche Is Granted Filipino Citizenship (Thu, 12 Jun 2014 04:30:56 GMT)
    The Nets’ Andray Blatche was granted Philippine citizenship so he can play for the country’s team at the World Cup this year, Philippine officials said.

  • [New York Times] Spurs Set Records, and Their Shooting Guru Offers Only a Shrug (Thu, 12 Jun 2014 01:09:58 GMT)
    The role of Chip Engelland, a San Antonio assistant, was spotlighted in the team’s offensive fireworks in Game 3 of the N.B.A. finals.

  • [New York Times] Sterling to Face Trial on Mental Capacity (Thu, 12 Jun 2014 00:37:52 GMT)
    A judge in Los Angeles will decide if Donald Sterling, the embattled owner of the N.B.A.’s Clippers, is mentally competent to serve as a trustee of the family trust.

  • 82 comments on “Knicks Morning News (2014.06.12)

    1. johnno

      I was bored last night so I spent a little time fooling around with WP48 stats and put together three imaginary teams — the THCJs, the DReds and the Johnnos — based solely on WP48. At pg, I gave THCJ the 6th and 7th best in the league and DRed no. 5 and 14. I stuck myself with no. 31 and 32. At sg, THCJ got no. 3 and 9 and DRed got 5 and 6. The lowly Johnnos got 13 and 32. At sf, THCJ got 6 and 10, DRed 5 and 6 and I got 15 and 17. At pf, THCJ got 4 and 6, DRed got 2 and 5 and I picked up no. 25 and 27. At center, THCJ got 4 and 7, DRed got 5 and 8 and I went bottom feeding — I gave myself the 17th and 44th best centers in the league. So, to recap, 19 of the 20 guys on the THCJs and DReds are top 10 in the league at their position. The Johnnos’ best player is 13th best at his position and 6 of the 10 guys on the team aren’t even top 25 in the league. Wow. The Johnnos are really gonna SUCK, right? Here are the rosters –
      THCJs — Rubio, George Hill, Korver, Belinelli, Ariza, Al-Farouq Amini, Jordan Hill, Terrence Jones, Brandon Wright and Mason Plumlee.
      DReds — Prigioni, Corey Joseph, Danny Green, Tony Allen, James Johnson, PJ Tucker, Jeff Adrien, Faried, Chris Anderson, Bismack Biyombo.
      Johnnos — Tony Parker, Reggie Jackson, Ray Allen, Klay Thompson, Melo, Chandler Parsons, Dirk Nowitzki, Paul Millsap, Dwight Howard, Marc Gasol.
      I can’t say for sure, but I think that the Eye Test All-Stars would do pretty well in a round robin tournament with the THCJs and DReds.
      Someone explain to me why anyone should take a stat that says that Brandon Wright, Chris Anderson, Mason Plumlee, Bismack Biyombo and Ronni Turiaf are top 12 at their position and that Dwight Howard, Chris Bosh and Marc Gasol are 17, 43 and 44 seriously. (By the way, it also says that Kris Humphries is “more productive” than Tim Duncan and that Tyler Hansbrough is the 9th best power forward while Blake Griffin, David West, Dirk and Millsap are 13, 24, 25 and 27.)

    2. DRed

      Putting together a team based solely on a box score stat is pretty dumb (not “do you even watch teh games dumb”, but dumb). Putting together a team based solely on one year of WP48 is pants on head retarded. Cool strawman bro.

    3. ephus

      The trial on Donald Sterling’s competency is going to be highly entertaining. If the judge finds he is not “mentally incapacitated”, the Ballmer sale likely will not close by Sept. 15 and the NBA will re-launch termination against the Sterlings. Here is a link to my analysis.

      http://wp.me/p4Dfab-kT

    4. johnno

      “Putting together a team based solely on one year of WP48 is pants on head retarded.”
      True, except for a couple of things — first, while I did look at just one year, guys like Tony Parker, Marc Gasol and Melo are never ranked highly by WP48 so the results would be similar if I used 3 or 5 years worth of data and, second, unless I am “mis-remembering” something, I’m pretty sure that you and TCHJ routinely cite WP48 as “proof” that certain guys are great. So, if WP48 is so valid when you are trying to explain how/why Chandler and Prigioni are the Knicks’ best players (or when THCJ is explaining that the great Jordan Hill is “awesome at basketball”) does that also mean that it’s valid in “proving” that Marc Gasol, Dwight Howard, Tony Parker, Dirk Nowitzki, Paul Millsap, Chris Bosh, etc. barely deserve to be starters in the NBA? (As an aside, I’ve watched some of the finals and it’s utterly amazing how well the 31st best point guard in the league is playing! WOW!) You can’t have it both ways. It can’t be a valid barometer when it supports your position, but invalid when it doesn’t. If there were one or two “anomalies,” you could dismiss them as statistical outliers. However, your favorite “advanced” stat is littered with examples of great players who are rated as mediocre at best and mediocre players who are rated as great. Bismack Biyombo a top 10 center? By the way, don’t you think that it’s strange that an advanced stat guru like Daryl Morey moved heaven and earth to acquire a statistical stiff like Dwight Howard? And why in the world is he going to pay anything more than $3 or $4 million a year to the 17th best small forward in the league? One more thing — the beauty of my roster is that, based on “value,” most of my guys will be playing for the vet minimum so that, when LeBron and Durant are free agents, I can make a real run at them, while, sadly, you and THCJ are totally capped out because you are paying dearly for all of those valuable win producers…

    5. MSA

      “…don’t you think that it’s strange that an advanced stat guru like Daryl Morey moved heaven and earth to acquire a statistical stiff like Dwight Howard?”

      Dwight Howard was always a beast according to WP48.

      And 0.190 is all star material, not a “statistical stiff”

    6. MSA

      This topic was beaten to death but apparently explaining it again is never enough

      WP48 show who performed well, not what the did on the court.

      So, Dred is right, putting together a team based solely on a box score stat is pretty dumb.

    7. Owen

      “I’m pretty sure that you and TCHJ routinely cite WP48 as “proof” that certain guys are great.”

      How sure are you? I was big on it, oh, six years ago, I can’t lie. But don’t see too many people taking that tack these days….

      Also, Dwight Howard has a pretty strong track record statistically, pre back injury anyway….

    8. iserp

      “I’m pretty sure that you and TCHJ routinely cite WP48 as “proof” that certain guys are great.”

      How sure are you? I was big on it, oh, six years ago, I can’t lie. But don’t see too many people taking that tack these days….

      Well, it is thrown in conversations from time to time. Since we are capped out and we don’t have WP48 superstar landry fields anymore, it is talked less. Not to mention that if you disagree and you point out the flaws of metric “X”, the conversation turns into a trial of whether it is ok to use metric “X” and the consequences of usage with metric “X”; and you lose the original conversation.

    9. iserp

      Also, i can’t find anywhere WP48 numbers older than 2 seasons. So it is hard to use them for research.

    10. johnno

      “Dwight Howard was always a beast according to WP48.
      And 0.190 is all star material, not a “statistical stiff””
      Well, compared to WP48 greats like Ronni Turiaf and Chris Anderson, it’s pretty bad, especially when you can get those guys for pennies on the dollar compared to what you pay Howard.
      I think WP48 is a ridiculous stat, but some people think here that it’s the be-all/end-all when it comes to advanced stats. According to WP48, the team that I put together for myself is lottery-bound, while the teams that I put together for THCJ and DRed are going to “produce” about 60 wins a year. I think that, if my team played those teams in 7 game series, they’d probably sweep them both (and win every game by double digits). I’ll ask the WP48 lovers — would you rather have Tony Parker or Prigioni? Marc Gasol or Ronni Turiaf? Chris Bosh or Chris Anderson? Jeff Adrien or Dirk Nowitski? David West or Tyler Hansbrough? (Note — the idiot Pacers decided to keep West.) If you believe in WP48, your answer has to be Prigioni, Turiaf, Anderson, Adrien and Hansbrough. If you think that it is absurd to pick those guys (like I do), then you have to acknowledge that WP48 is pretty much a useless stat. (I know, I know, WP48 says that Durant, LeBron, and CP3 are great — then again, so does the eye test, and just about every other old school and new school stat, so that doesn’t prove a whole lot.)

    11. Farfa

      The THCJs and DReds, if put in the hands of a good-to-great coach, could really win against the Johnnos. What WP48 shows (and, while I don’t share the same views with Jowles, I think WP48 is anyway an interesting litmus paper) is the tendency to not fuck up on the court; basically, if you are aware of your limitations and have a better than average motor, WP48 will show that. It’s obvious that Melo is a better player than Cory Joseph. It’s not obvious that Melo will always be a better contributor on the court than Cory Joseph, especially if Melo goes ISO on everything that moves while Joseph makes always the right decision and never forces anything. The only real aberration of WP48 is Bismack Biyombo; I think the system translate his inability to catch the ball into “knows his limitations and doesn’t want anything to do with the ball while more competent teammates are on the court”. That is just plain wrong. Biyombo is virtually unplayable as of now.

      Anyway, back to the point: do you remember USA Basketball getting handed its ass on international level on 2004 and 2006? USA Basketball were the Johnnos; Greece and Argentina were the THCJs and DReds.

    12. DRed

      first, while I did look at just one year, guys like Tony Parker, Marc Gasol and Melo are never ranked highly by WP48 so the results would be similar if I used 3 or 5 years worth of data and

      Tony Parker and Gasol were highly ranked by WP48 way back in last year. Melo was the Knicks best player this year by WP and was highly ranked by WP48. Not as highly ranked as his fanboys would like, but he had a very good season this year.

      “Does that also mean that it’s valid in “proving” that Marc Gasol, Dwight Howard, Tony Parker, Dirk Nowitzki, Paul Millsap, Chris Bosh, etc. barely deserve to be starters in the NBA?”

      Uh, no. Because all those guys have generally been very productive players, according to WP48. Are you even looking at their WP48 numbers, or are you just completely making shit up?

      (As an aside, I’ve watched some of the finals and it’s utterly amazing how well the 31st best point guard in the league is playing! WOW!)

      Have you seen how well Patty Mills has been playing? LOL, that guy can’t even start. If he was so good, how come Portland just let him go?

      Someone finishing 31st in the league in WP48 doesn’t mean he’s the 31st best point guard in the league. It means he finished 31st in WP48.

    13. Kevin Udwary

      The only real aberration of WP48 is Bismack Biyombo

      Hey, leave Biz alone! He is what he is, a very good rebounder and defender, gets a ton of blocks, and scores efficiently, if infrequently. And for having an “inability to catch the ball”, he has a remarkably low turnover rate. He is the kind of guy that I think metrics like WS48 and WP48 are good at finding. Guys that do things less obvious things on the court that help you win. johnno inadvertently made a really good point about the usefulness of such advanced stat metrics when he said:

      Well, compared to WP48 greats like Ronni Turiaf and Chris Anderson, it’s pretty bad, especially when you can get those guys for pennies on the dollar compared to what you pay Howard.

      It’s about finding good value in players that fly under the radar because they don’t score a lot or jump really high. Obviously one metric like WP48 isn’t the be all, end all of how good a player is, and I really haven’t seen anyone claim that it is. A balance in your constructed team is still needed. You aren’t going to fill your team with all Biyombos, but one Biz can definitely help most teams (if he can actually stay on the court by reducing his fouling rate). I think he’s very much underutilized in Charlotte and would love to have him on the Knicks.

    14. Farfa

      I think he’s very much underutilized in Charlotte and would love to have him on the Knicks.

      I admit most of my Biyombo analysis stems from the fact that a very good coach such as Clifford hasn’t found a way to play him more than 15 minutes per night. He’s an aberration because, while he’s productive, his low turnover rate really comes from the fact that no one is passing him the ball for fear he won’t know what to do with it. That said, I would love to see what happens if Biyombo wears a Knicks jersey too. It’s just that in my mind Biyombo is the only guy who would have trouble playing in any setting until he develops at least good hands, so that when someone throws him the ball he’ll catch it with strength and finish, kind of what the Plumdogs already do.

    15. iserp

      “Does that also mean that it’s valid in “proving” that Marc Gasol, Dwight Howard, Tony Parker, Dirk Nowitzki, Paul Millsap, Chris Bosh, etc. barely deserve to be starters in the NBA?”

      Uh, no. Because all those guys have generally been very productive players, according to WP48. Are you even looking at their WP48 numbers, or are you just completely making shit up?

      What’s up with that attitude? Nobody is making shit up, here are the numbers:

      Marc Gasol: 0.075
      Tony Parker: 0.085
      Dirk Nowitzki: 0.126
      Paul Millsap: 0.125
      Chris Bosh: 0.078
      Dwight Howard: 0.190

      So Gasol, Bosh and Parker are below average players according to that statistic, and Millsap and Nowitzki are good but nothing special. Howard has the numbers of an all-star.

      Sometimes you are really hard attacking Melo, and then you get all defensive when someone confronts you, or the arguments you use. I think it would be better if you could talk things in a more civilized way.

    16. DRed

      I think WP48 is a ridiculous stat, but some people think here that it’s the be-all/end-all when it comes to advanced stats.

      Again, nobody thinks that. I say that time and time again, and you just ignore it. Your argument is totally dishonest.

      I’ll ask the WP48 lovers — would you rather have Tony Parker or Prigioni? Marc Gasol or Ronni Turiaf? Chris Bosh or Chris Anderson? Jeff Adrien or Dirk Nowitski? David West or Tyler Hansbrough? (Note — the idiot Pacers decided to keep West.) If you believe in WP48, your answer has to be Prigioni, Turiaf, Anderson, Adrien and Hansbrough.

      Parker. Prigioni can’t play starter minutes. Parker can, and has generally played at a high level in his career. Gasol. Gasol has been better over his career than Turiaf. Anderson, maybe. Chris Anderson is a good player, but because of injuries and substance abuse problems has played more than 1500 minutes once in his career. Bosh is way overpaid relative to his production, so I could really go either way on this one. For the money, you could pay Chris Anderson and someone else who could replicate what Bosh does and probably still have money left over for another productive player. I honestly don’t know who Jeff Adrien is, but he seemed pretty productive last year, so for the money I’d probably take him over Dirk. He obviously can’t score like Dirk, but he’s going to get your team the ball a lot more. Finally, Hansborough is a more productive player than David West, but he fouls a ton so it’s hard for him to stay on the court, so this one is another toss up. Overall, though, I’d take Psycho T and 9 million dollars over old David West.

    17. DRed

      So Gasol, Bosh and Parker are below average players according to that statistic, and Millsap and Nowitzki are good but nothing special. Howard has the numbers of an all-star.

      No, no, no, no, no, no, no. That’s what they did last fucking season according to what they did last season-which is what I keep saying. Sure, if you throw out the rest of their careers, ignore their injuries, etc, they were below average players. But that’s not what I’m saying you should do.

      Sometimes you are really hard attacking Melo, and then you get all defensive when someone confronts you, or the arguments you use. I think it would be better if you could talk things in a more civilized way.

      You repeatedly ignore or misstate what I say. Melo is a good player who is badly overpaid and who is likely heading into the decline phase of his career. That’s why I don’t want the Knicks to sign him to a big money long term contract. I don’t think it’s likely that he will produce at a level high enough to justify spending a lot of money on him. I’ve said that, I dunno, 20 times this season? I’m sure people are tired of reading it. I don’t think it’s a particularly complex argument. It doesn’t mean I hate Melo. I don’t think it’s an attack on Melo. He’s just not the player he’s paid to be.

    18. iserp

      No, no, no, no, no, no, no. That’s what they did last fucking season according to what they did last season-which is what I keep saying. Sure, if you throw out the rest of their careers, ignore their injuries, etc, they were below average players. But that’s not what I’m saying you should do.

      If you looks this season’s Grizzlies record with and without Marc Gasol. Do you think he had a below average season?

      What about Bosh or Parker, do you think they did a below average season? (And not a below average season for their standards, i mean a below average season for an NBA player)

      I’ve been complaining for a long while that WP48 is very inconsistent. Their PER did not change much.

    19. Kevin Udwary

      I think it’s more informative to look at the numbers and see why a guy’s WP disagrees with what you expect, rather than just say “This stat is ridiculous and worthless!”. Let’s look at some of your examples and why they have a lower WP than you’d expect:
      Gasol: Below average rebounder, well below efficiency scorer.
      Parker: Had a down year. Average assist rate, not great scoring efficiency, average TO rate. He has classically had an above average WP, though.
      Dirk: Has an above average WP. What hurts him most is his below average rebounding at a position that puts high value in rebounds.
      Millsap: Again, this is an above average WP. He gets knocked for his below average scoring efficiency.
      Bosh: Well below average rebounding, blocks, but did score efficiently, at least.
      Howard: As has been said, 0.190 WP48 is pretty damn good. His turnover rate is ridiculously high, though.

    20. JK47

      Hey, leave Biz alone! He is what he is, a very good rebounder and defender, gets a ton of blocks, and scores efficiently, if infrequently. And for having an “inability to catch the ball”, he has a remarkably low turnover rate.

      He has a low turnover rate because his teammates almost never pass him the ball. Other than rebounds, Biyombo gets about one touch every five minutes– not one SHOT, one TOUCH every five minutes on the court, by far the lowest rate in the NBA. That is an eternity of time to not even touch the ball. Biyombo’s teammates are playing four-on-five pretty much the whole time he is on the court, because he can’t shoot, pass or dribble. He is one player that absolutely “breaks” WP48.

    21. iserp

      You repeatedly ignore or misstate what I say. Melo is a good player who is badly overpaid and who is likely heading into the decline phase of his career. That’s why I don’t want the Knicks to sign him to a big money long term contract. I don’t think it’s likely that he will produce at a level high enough to justify spending a lot of money on him. I’ve said that, I dunno, 20 times this season? I’m sure people are tired of reading it. I don’t think it’s a particularly complex argument. It doesn’t mean I hate Melo. I don’t think it’s an attack on Melo. He’s just not the player he’s paid to be.

      I was not talking about “what you say”. I am talking about “how you say” it. It is ok if you find Melo overrated, overpaid, both, or none. What it is not OK is to imply that other posters are not intelligent if they don’t agree with you. You have a very aggressive way of saying things in this blog, and i personally find it annoying.

    22. Kevin Udwary

      He is one player that absolutely “breaks” WP48.

      He only breaks it if you look at WP as telling the complete story of someone’s value. Biz does a lot on the court that is benificial to winning, such as rebounding, defense and scoring efficiently when the opportunity arises. I’m not saying he is some offensive beast, just waiting for an opportunity for more touches, but what seems to be true from last year is that he isn’t going to hurt you by taking inefficient shots. That’s just one year though. I’m not all in on Biz, but he does show promise. He just has to get his fouls under control.

    23. iserp

      For the record. DRed has called other people in this thread:

      “Dumb”
      “Retarded”
      “Fanboys”
      “Making Shit up”
      “Dishonest”

      And expresions like:

      “No, no, no, no, no, no, no.”
      “You repeatedly ignore or misstate what I say”
      “I don’t think it’s a particularly complex argument”

      Which either imply i am not intelligent, or want to assert his authority in the matter.

    24. johnno

      @19 I understand why certain guys have lower wp48 than others. Understanding why Howard has a lower wp48 than Turiaf doesn’t make a stat that says that Turiaf is more “productive ” any less ridiculous — either to a dumb guy like me or a genius like Morey. It merely explains the ridiculousness. DRed – as I am sure you realize, wp48 doesn’t measure productivity per dollar — it measures productivity per minute. So, it does not say that Birdman is more productive than Bosh, considering what you pay him. It says that he is more productive period. Pat Riley is a pretty smart guy. If he had to give up Bosh or Anderson based solely on their contribution to the team, do you think that there is a chance in hell that he’d keep Anderson . Oh, and you are right — I misspoke — There weren’t 30 better point guards than Parker this year. Just 30 more productive ones. I bet Pop disagrees…

    25. johnno

      Hansbrough is more productive than West? Someone should break that news to Knows Squat About Basketball Larry Bird because he chose to re-sign West.
      You know who else is one of the least efficient least productive players in the league? John Wall. But by some miracle the Wiz are a much worse team when he’s injured. Go figure.

    26. Kevin Udwary

      Pat Riley is a pretty smart guy. If he had to give up Bosh or Anderson based solely on their contribution to the team, do you think that there is a chance in hell that he’d keep Anderson

      Even with the eye test, for this season, is it really unbelievable to say that Birdman has been more productive in his minutes than Bosh? That’s a serious question. I feel like you’re judging Bosh on past season success, and not for this season. He really hasn’t been very good this year. Of course, Anderson has serious durability issues, but when he is on the court, I think it’s pretty obvious Miami is better off.

    27. DRed

      You know who else is one of the least efficient least productive players in the league? John Wall.

      John Wall had an above average WP/48 of .125 last season. He played almost 3000 minutes. That’s a valuable basketball player and in no way one of the least productive players in the league.

      Larry Bird is a smart guy who was a great basketball player. He also traded a first round pick, Green and Plumlee, for Luis Scola, who sucked. He’s not infallible.

    28. Farfa

      Again, it’s all about roles. Hansbrough is very productive (if psychotic) brawler from the bench. West is an above-average starting caliber PF. WP48 seems to capture only the adjectives (very productive – above-average) and not the general settings-surroundings.

    29. Nick C.

      Does anyone think WP/48 is similar to something like ERA or ERA+ for relief pitchers in baseball if you equate “role players” with relievers. Relievers have better ERAs, etc. then starters but then again they often get “platooned”, rarely (never) face the same batter twice a game, can fire away without concern for pacing themselves, etc.

    30. stratomatic

      It amazes me how WP48 can get relentlessly trashed on an advanced stats forum by people that don’t even seem understand what the model says or how to use it.

      Wins Produced says absolutely nothing about team construction. It has been repeatedly stated by Berri that it’s on the management to ensure that the high WP48 players selected create a team with a balance of ball handling, play making, scoring, rebounding, defense etc…

      If you put together 5 high WP48 players with no consideration at all for the “skill set” of the individual players (not necessarily by position) it would fail just as a team made up of Shaq, Robinson, Olijawan, Chamberlain and Russell would fail even though they are 5 of the greatest players of all time.

      WP48 is simply valuing what a player has done on the court without any regard for how or why.

      It’s on the analyst to look determine where the value is being generated by a player (scoring vs. rebounding, blocks vs. assists etc..) and then fit the pieces together in a way that generates the greatest overall value.

      It is also NOT saying which player is better!

      It is comparing players relative to the norms of the position they tend to defend. In other words, since SGs tend to be the least productive position overall, even a decent overall player that plays SG may look better on WP48 than a superior overall player that plays PF (PFs tending to contribute more to winning).

      Landry Fields (when he was healthy) rated highly. Fields has a skill set closer to a low usage SF or PF than a SG. But since D’Antoni forced him into the SG slot because he could defend it reasonably well, he could generate a lot of value from the position from his way above average rebounding for that position. To do that though, you need a ton of efficient scoring elsewhere because typically the SG is a primary scorer. If you don’t, you are doomed. So Fields usually plays SF where his rebounds generate less value and his overall…

    31. DRed

      Does anyone think WP/48 is similar to something like ERA or ERA+ for relief pitchers in baseball if you equate “role players” with relievers. Relievers have better ERAs, etc. then starters but then again they often get “platooned”, rarely (never) face the same batter twice a game, can fire away without concern for pacing themselves, etc.

      This makes some sense intuitively, but people who have looked into it have found that players generally produce about as well in limited minutes as they do playing starter minutes. We had this discussion about Cole Aldrich this summer. People said he only played against backups, asked why he didn’t play more if he was a solid player, etc. And then it turned out that like most players who are productive in limited minutes, he was also productive when we gave him more minutes. There are always going to be exceptions, but generally guys are the same playing 30 minutes as they are playing 12 minutes.

    32. Hubert

      For the record. DRed has called other people in this thread:

      “Dumb”
      “Retarded”
      “Fanboys”
      “Making Shit up”
      “Dishonest”

      And I think he’s going easy on those people.

      This is some crazy shit I’m reading. Between the strawman argument that started this, the seriously flawed logic (e.g. “If you believe in WP48, your answer has to be Prigioni, Turiaf, Anderson, Adrien and Hansbrough”), and a total lack of understanding for both the stats in question and the beliefs of the people being called out…I’d say this is one of the weirdest threads I’ve ever read here. I feel like we’re all characters inside johnno’s snowglobe.

    33. stratomatic

      To continue….

      IMO the primary weakness of WP48 right now is that it doesn’t (or can’t) make positional adjustments based on skill set instead of actual position. It calls Dirk a PF, but he’s really a floor spacing SF. That impacts his WP48 because he doesn’t rebound as well as the typical PF. But he doesn’t get those rebounds partly because he spends so much time on the perimeter instead of in the post of near the basket. It’s an issue they are working on (or at least were). They are also looking at floor spacing ability as an individual value metric.

    34. Nick C.

      Thanks for the reply DRed. I don’t even want to get back into the “more minutes” argument (and the related study) that seems to have been rearing its head on a regular basis since the David Lee days. lol

    35. Hubert

      Someone finishing 31st in the league in WP48 doesn’t mean he’s the 31st best point guard in the league. It means he finished 31st in WP48.

      This.

    36. johnno

      “I feel like we’re all characters inside johnno’s snowglobe.”
      Fun discussion though…
      “That’s a valuable basketball player and in no way one of the least productive players in the league.”
      You’re right. I exaggerated to make a point. I can’t believe that someone would do such a thing on this site. His WP48 made him the 20th most productive point guard, which made him more productive than Tony Parker (who was just about the least productive starting point guard in the league), but not nearly as productive as Pablo.
      But, do you really and truly think that, this year, Marc Gasol was not even in the top 40 centers in the league on a per minute basis?

    37. GoNyGoNYGo

      New topic.

      How do you all feel about the LeBron, Wade, Bosh, Melo fearsome-foursome idea?

      Me? I might stop watching NBA basketball. What BS.

    38. Cincinnatus

      “I honestly don’t know who Jeff Adrien is, but he seemed pretty productive last year, so for the money I’d probably take him over Dirk. He obviously can’t score like Dirk, but he’s going to get your team the ball a lot more. ”

      this is problematic…you don’t even know who he is yet you make these assertions about how he’s better than Dirk for the $ and “he’s going to get your team the ball a lot more.” I don’t get it.

      I actually watch a lot of Bucks games (strictly because i’m a degenerate sports bettor)…Adrien is not that good. He did get a ton of run though after Sanders and Henson went down and did ok. A LOT of that value comes from his rebounding but it’s important to note that Pachulia & Middleton are two horrible rebounders and the Bucks are, I think, the worst rebounding team in the NBA…It’s like no one else can grab the ball on that team. WP is in love with guys like him, Aminu, Humphries, Booker, evans, etc…bench PFs, often on bad teams, produce lots of WP.

    39. Hubert

      Hansbrough is more productive than West? Someone should break that news to Knows Squat About Basketball Larry Bird because he chose to re-sign West.

      Johnno, look at this way:

      1. more productive on a per minute basis does not equal better.

      2. a guy like Hansborough comes into a game and a grabs a ton of offensive rebounds, gets a few buckets on limited shots with a very high percentage. that’s production. wp48 says if you took that production that he gives you in a short amount of time and spread it out over 48 minutes you would have an extremely productive player.

      That’s all.

      The reason Larry Bird chose West over Hansbrough is that he knows Tyler can’t provide that production over 48 minutes, and I promise you DRed does, too!

    40. stratomatic

      The reason Larry Bird chose West over Hansbrough is that he knows Tyler can’t provide that production over 48 minutes, and I promise you DRed does, too!

      This.

      So does David Berri, but in general, if given the opportunity, many players can sustain their productivity per minute with more minutes. The problem for the model is that it’s very difficult to recognize which players can and which players cannot with a set of rules. So you calculate the productivity per minute and let the Larry Bird types decide.

    41. lavor postell

      I honestly don’t know who Jeff Adrien is, but he seemed pretty productive last year, so for the money I’d probably take him over Dirk. He obviously can’t score like Dirk, but he’s going to get your team the ball a lot more.

      I have no words for this.

    42. johnno

      “1. more productive on a per minute basis does not equal better.

      2. a guy like Hansborough comes into a game and a grabs a ton of offensive rebounds, gets a few buckets on limited shots with a very high percentage. that’s production. wp48 says if you took that production that he gives you in a short amount of time and spread it out over 48 minutes you would have an extremely productive player. ”
      You have made my point much more precisely and cogently than I could have! My problem with any of per minute stats or “aggregate” states (like win shares, wins produced, etc.) is not with the stats themselves — it is with how they are used by people who choose to ignore context and role on a team — but only when it suits their needs to do so. For example — the ad nauseum arguments on this site about how efficient Chandler is on six shots a game — as if he would be anywhere near as efficient if he were put in a position in which his team wanted him to shoot 20 times because no one else on the team could shoot. Or Prigioni has a great TS% — maybe because he never takes a remotely difficult shot.
      “The reason Larry Bird chose West over Hansbrough is that he knows Tyler can’t provide that production over 48 minutes, and I promise you DRed does, too!”
      I’m not so sure about that. DRed calls the choice between Hansbrough and West a toss-up and insists that Hansbrough is the much more productive player. He appears to be much more of a WP48 zealot than you or I might think reasonable. After all, this is a guy who likes Jeff Adrien even though he’s never heard of him…

    43. lavor postell

      2. a guy like Hansborough comes into a game and a grabs a ton of offensive rebounds, gets a few buckets on limited shots with a very high percentage. that’s production. wp48 says if you took that production that he gives you in a short amount of time and spread it out over 48 minutes you would have an extremely productive player.

      So I think the biggest problem a lot of people have isn’t necessarily the statistic itself but how the WoW guys use it in discussing player value. I think it was 3 years ago when they stated that the Lakers would have been better served giving the majority of Kobe’s minutes to Matt Barnes. It’s saying things like that and then calling anybody who disagrees with you an idiot who just bases their opinions on the eye test that probably leads to people’s frustrations with the statistic.

      I think WP48 has value, but like any metric has it’s flaws as well.

    44. Nick C.

      Not that I am a fan of the volume shooter, but there has to be some accounting for usage. There’s 48 minutes a 24 second shot clock so that’s 50+ possessions per team as a conservative estimate.

    45. thenamestsam

      How do you all feel about the LeBron, Wade, Bosh, Melo fearsome-foursome idea?

      I’d be very annoyed with Melo if he is willing to take a big paycut to win somewhere else after he basically forced the Knicks to weaken their team because he wasn’t willing to take any paycut in coming here. That said, if he does leave, I would love to see the fearsome foursome in Miami. I think it would be fascinating from a team-building perspective to see how they’d look. How much would Melo’s stats change in an environment where he’s not the primary creator? Could he take some of that energy and use it to become a real high quality defensive 4? How good an offense could that be? Could they guard anybody? I think it would be the most intriguing NBA team assembled maybe ever.

    46. Cock Jowles Has Predicted the Last Three Knicks Seasons

      One of the stupid presumptions is that Dave Berri “chose” to weigh stats as he saw fit. Like he went into the process being like, “Hey, I think rebounds are really important, so I’m going to give them lots of value.”

      That’s not how regression works. Berri works with the data he has and then argues what the data mean when processed. Intuitive basketball thinking is simply confirmed by WP48: that it’s important to score efficiently and it’s important to generate and maintain possessions. We can then argue that high-efficiency possessions result in high-efficiency shooting numbers, and high shooting numbers are the result of high-efficiency possessions.

      It is a more complicated line of reasoning that claims that because Tyson Chandler refuses to take difficult shots that he “forces” his teammates to take them in his place. Intuitively, I never want my basketball team to take a bad shot. It is the mark of a great offense like the Spurs’ that those possessions are minimized in quantity.

      To my mind, this is all very simple and difficult to argue against. No one will argue that every possession has the same expected point value, but then again no one will argue that isolations must EVER be used in the course of a basketball game. Again, to my mind, there’s no circumstance in which isolation should be played over a pick and roll, unless you’ve got LeBron being guarded by Andrea Bargnani with four Ray Allens on the perimeter clearing the paint.

      Wins Produced produces very few arguments that are difficult to swallow. What baffles me is that the posters on this board still champion Win Shares as if it’s somehow got an entirely different methodology. It’s confirmation bias at its dumbest.

    47. DRed

      I’m not so sure about that. DRed calls the choice between Hansbrough and West a toss-up and insists that Hansbrough is the much more productive player. He appears to be much more of a WP48 zealot than you or I might think reasonable. After all, this is a guy who likes Jeff Adrien even though he’s never heard of him

      These binary choices are a bit unrealistic, which is one of the reasons you can’t just look at WP/48 and make a choice between players. Let’s assume Hansborough can’t maintain his effectiveness playing the minutes West does (because of his propensity for fouling, or his playing style, or whatever). So, you’d have to factor in who your backup players are. If they’re pretty good, you would take Hansbrough over West, because he’s more productive per minute. If your backup is Andrea Bargnani, you’d take West, because you need to keep Bargs off the floor. And then Hansbrough is much younger and significantly cheaper. WP/48 doesn’t know that, but we do. If Larry Bird could only keep West or Hansbrough for this year, keeping West was not a bad decision. West was more productive, because he’s a good player and he was able to log a ton more minutes. But I think you can make a very strong case that Hansbrough is a better player to have on your team.

    48. DRed

      For example — the ad nauseum arguments on this site about how efficient Chandler is on six shots a game — as if he would be anywhere near as efficient if he were put in a position in which his team wanted him to shoot 20 times because no one else on the team could shoot. Or Prigioni has a great TS% — maybe because he never takes a remotely difficult shot.

      What I don’t understand about this argument is that you don’t consider the opposite. No, Tyson could not shoot 20 times a game and maintain his efficiency. But Melo can’t play center and do what Tyson does (maybe Lebron could, but that’s why he’s the best player in the world). And the fact that you can’t shoot another 14 times doesn’t mean the 6 really good shots you did take aren’t valuable. Scoring 12 or 13 points a game at the highest efficiency in the league is very valuable. Would Prigs or Tyson be somehow better if they missed more shots? Jon Abbey used to argue this, and it never made any sense to me. Missing shots is the second worst thing you can do on offense. It’s bad to miss shots.

    49. Hubert

      I’m sorry, I’m not even on Team Berri but the way their arguments are being misrepresented and misunderstood in this thread is driving me nuts.

    50. Hubert

      I said:

      2. a guy like Hansborough comes into a game and a grabs a ton of offensive rebounds, gets a few buckets on limited shots with a very high percentage. that’s production. wp48 says if you took that production that he gives you in a short amount of time and spread it out over 48 minutes you would have an extremely productive player.

      DRed said:

      Let’s assume Hansborough can’t maintain his effectiveness playing the minutes West does (because of his propensity for fouling, or his playing style, or whatever).

      For the record, I wouldn’t normally make the argument that a guy who is effective in limited minutes would be less effective if you gave him more.

      However, in the case of two of the people being discussed (Hansbrough and Birdman) I would, only because they both play such a high energy brand of basketball.

      It’s not like I’m saying Andre Drummond wouldn’t be as dominant if you played him 40 minutes. I’m just saying these two guys in particular (Birdman and psycho T) play at a frantic pace and most human beings don’t have the stamina to maintain that.

    51. lavor postell

      I don’t think anybody is disputing that Chandler is a very valuable player, but if you really thought Chandler was an elite player this year I don’t know what to say. 2011-12 and 2012-13 pre-injury Chandler is an awesome fucking player and one every single team in the league would love to have. Chandler this year was still really efficient and a pretty good rebounder, but his defensive effort and leadership for a guy lauded for those 2 things was fucking pathetic. He was pretty willing to throw anybody and everybody under the bus and act like he had nothing to do with this shit show of a season.

    52. er

      No, Tyson could not shoot 20 times a game and maintain his efficiency. But Melo can’t play center and do what Tyson does (maybe Lebron could, but that’s why he’s the best player in the world).

      What exactly does Chandler do? Melo was avg 25-10 when Chandler was out. So Melo can rebound. Chandler avg .5 more Bpg than melo

    53. MSA

      RPG? Really?

      Melo avg 10 rebounds playing 40 minutes per game

      Per 36 Melo avg 7.5 and Chandler 11.5

      Comparing Melo and Chandler doesn’t make any sense

    54. er

      haha so your arguement is that Melo is able to play more minutes? And i was talking about when Tyson was injured NOT his season per 36 which IS 7.5 I would venture to guess that its closer to 11.5 during the point of the season where Tyson was out and Melo WAS avg 25+ and 10+ in 40 mins a game

      By my bad math that per 36 number is 9.1

    55. DRed

      Y’all really don’t think its possible to take Jeff Adrien and 21 million dollars and get a more production than the Mavs got from dirk this year? There are 3 guys in the NBA who make more than 21 million dollars, and one of them is Gilbert Arenas. SMH.

    56. MSA

      No, my argument is that comparing a Center and a SF doesn’t make any sense.

      You cannot argue that the knicks don’t need chandler (a center) because playing Melo (a small forward) 40 minutes per game he can get 9 rebounds insted of 7.5

      By my bad math 9.1 still below 11.5

    57. johnno

      But wp48 doesn’t say that you get better production from Adrien plus 21 million to spend elsewhere. It says that you get better , actually much better, production from a guy you’ve never heard of than from Dirk straight up. Absurd on its face if you ask me.

    58. DRed

      Have I ever explained to you that WP/48 is not the only thing you should look at in determining player value?

      I agree somewhat with stratomatics assement of WP and players like Dirk. And let’s say Cincinnatus, who actually knows who Adrien is, is right about his rebounding being affected by his awful teammates. Put that all together and you get Dirk > Jeff. But also maybe Jeff is worth a look as a player who outproduces his salary and reputation.

    59. Z-man

      Really excited about tonight’s game, and this recurring argument is a perfect warmup.

      I think Jowles is correct about Pop, his greatest attribute as a coach is maximizing points per possession by minimizing inefficient shots. Spurs’ players generally know which shots are best for them to take. He uses motion to get guys the ball in their sweet spots, or to break down defenses so that things open up.

    60. Z-man

      My problem with WP48 has always been its narrow definitions of roles.

      WP is not about “generating” possessions, since both teams have a virtually equivalent amount of possessions in a game (by the statistical definition of “possession” as opposed to the rule book implied definition.) An offensive rebound “extends” a possession rather than “generates” one. What offensive rebounding does is maximizes “shots per possession.” On the other hand, turning the ball over before a shot attempt reduces overall shots per possession. In an exaggerated model, if a team shoots 40% but gets 2 shots per possession, they will score more points than a team that shoots 60% but gets only 1 shot per possession. Statistically, foul shots increase points per possession without increasing shots per possession.

      On a well constructed and well coached team, shots per possession will be maximized and shooting percentage will be maximized on offense, and defenses will work to minimize both for opponents.

      Where WP48 becomes clunky is in defining players simplistically as “better than” or “worse than” as a whole. In general, a team pretty has to generate 80+ points a game to win, usually requiring 35+ made shots on 75+ shot attempts. A player like Tyson Chandler can be counted on for 6 of those made shots, taking only 10 shots to do it. In a great offense, he might either increase his shot attempts at the same efficiency, or make the same amount of shots on fewer attempts, or increase team shooting efficiency via offensive rebounding. But the reality is, he could never take 20 shot attempts at the same efficiency. The rest of the team has to take the other 65+ shots, no matter what team he is on. and it is likely that those shots will not be as efficient because there are generally only a finite amount of shots available in the 0-5 foot range where Chandler takes most of his 10 shots…for him or anybody else. Defenses simply won’t allow for it.

    61. Cock Jowles Has Predicted the Last Three Knicks Seasons

      The argument that there can only be so many shots in the paint is absurdly presumptuous. The argument that the remaining shots that Chandler doesn’t take will be more difficult than if he weren’t there? Crazy! Totally and absurdly crazy. There is no evidence for this position except for long-winded discussions of how he “clogs the paint” or “can’t draw a defender away from the rim,” which, as we see in the PNR, is totally and completely false.

      Z-man, look at the complexity of that paragraph you just wrote. Basketball is a game of possessions that generally start with the same scenario. What makes you think that Chandler needs to take 2 or 3 shots per game so his teammates don’t have to force up contested 18-footers?

      The reality is that Chandler’s shot attempts are high efficiency and he makes them with historically-great efficiency. I just can’t believe that there are people who presume that because he doesn’t take bad shots, there are other players who consequently have to.

      It’s a slippery slope and there’s no evidence for it whatsoever.

    62. Z-man

      So high-WP48 players like Chandler have a positive impact on offensive efficiency, but a team of Tyson Chandlers (or low-usage, high WP48 players) would simply run out of shots in their individual wheelhouses, whether it be dunks or 3-point shots. Somebody has to take the big chunk of mid-range shots that every team is forced to take by defenses. The real value of the Chandlers is how the fact that defenses must plan to limit their high-efficiency attempts and extension of possessions, and put the ball in the hands less efficient mid-range guys.

    63. Z-man

      @64, heh, I was actually agreeing with you on a certain level, and I think that what I was trying to say did not come across well. I’ll try again.

      Do you agree that even though there is a theoretical possibility of a team taking only high-efficiency shots at or near the rim, there is a relatively narrow statistical range for both volume and relative % of shot types for the winning team in a typical NBA game? Say, 10-15 shots of 0-5 feet, 15-20 3-point shots and the rest assorted mid-range shots? (just guesses, I’ll leave it to others with more time to find the actual data.)

      Do you agree that the probability of Chandler being able to shoot at the same efficiency at a 30+% usage, or at an average of 20+ shots a game is near zero? That the aggregate TS% on every additional shot attempt would likely plummet on the way from 10 to 20 attempts? (on average over an 82-game season, not in cherry-picked games.)

      The beauty of Chandler is that he doesn’t attempt shots outside of his high-efficiency zone. But he doesn’t get that many of them either. His “presence” certainly can positively affect the efficiency of other players, e.g. in the pick and roll. But he can’t be compared to a guy like, say, Tim Duncan, who not only converts the same shots at the rim and in the P&R as efficiently as Chandler, but converts shorter mid-range shots at a higher percentage than other mid-range shooters.

    64. johnno

      I agree – Chandler is a historically efficient scorer who has an unbelievable knack for taking and making shots in the paint. No one quite like him in the last 30 years. Here’s what I just don’t get — he’s played for a bunch of coaches and with some pretty good point guards. Why is it that none of them are as smart as we are? You would think that someone somewhere would have figured out what we have figured out– just keep running plays to get him 30 shots a game near the rim and he’ll get you 40 efficient points a night! What a bunch of dopes…

    65. DRed

      The pistons scored 1500 more points in the paint than the Knicks did last year. There may be some theoretical limit to the number of interior attempts you can generate, but I feel fairly confident the Knicks were nowhere near it last season.

    66. Z-man

      “I just can’t believe that there are people who presume that because he doesn’t take bad shots, there are other players who consequently have to.”

      Here’s where we differ: in the definition of what constitutes a “bad” shot. To me, a “bad” shot is a shot that is not the best one available, given the defense, the situation, the 24-second clock, the players on the floor. The empirical reality is that the shots that Chandler can convert efficiently are of limited availability, and that there are scores of NBA players that convert the same exact shots at the same high percentage. Chandler probably gets 1-2 more possibilities than most per game due to his length, but beyond that, he’s of limited value on offense.

    67. Cock Jowles Has Predicted the Last Three Knicks Seasons

      Ayo, Toney Douglas is playing in the NBA Finals. Do you see this? That’s Toney D.

    68. Z-man

      1500 points in the paint divided by 82 games comes out to 9 baskets a game, and you are comparing one of the leagues best to one of the league’s worst and it’s only about 12 shots per game. Interestingly, the knicks had the better record and both teams missed the playoffs. So you actually make the point that having WP48 god Andre Drummond didn’t generate very many wins for the Pistons. ( I seem to remember someone posting that their offense was better with him off the floor?)

      According to B-R, Marc Gasol shot better at the rim and from 3-10 feet than Chandler. There are many others, I’m sure.

    69. DRed

      You’re saying Tyson isn’t that good b/c he hogs the limited number of inside looks that exist? Im not sure I understand what you’re arguing

    70. Z-man

      No. I’m saying he is good, even very good. He’s just overrated by WP48 due to limitations in his offensive game. He is extremely good at what he does, but there is also a lot he can’t do. Comparing him to, say, Marc Gasol on the basis of TS% is misleading because Gasol can be effective from more spaces on the floor than Chandler can. So long as Chandler is in a situation where that doesn’t matter, he’s as good as Gasol.

    71. Cock Jowles Has Predicted the Last Three Knicks Seasons

      I assure you that a guy who shoots 70 eFG% at 30 shots a game is more valuable than one who shoots 5 shots a game, but I will not concede that taking few shots necessarily implies that the shots he doesn’t take become more difficult. That is such a stretch that I can’t really understand how it’s made.

    72. Farfa

      That is such a stretch that I can’t really understand how it’s made.

      Jowles, it’s me again! Jokes aside, I think it is a supposition that stems from the fact that, for a Tyson Chandler to shoot 20 times in the actual system he plays within, it would probably mean he has to shoot 14 elbow jumpers (we have to reckon that he won’t shoot much better than 35% eFG from there).

      But you are right, we can’t say that for sure. If there was a system that could make it easier for Chandler to shoot 4 more point-blank bunnies, he would shoot them also at a 70% eFG. So it’s much more about trying to optimize the offensive output of everyone on your roster than it is about a stale “Adrien vs. Nowitzki” debate.

    73. Farfa

      No it isn’t, sorry. I wrote it badly. I admit I should have written “It stems from the supposition, not necessarily grounded in reality, that for a Tyson Chandler etc. etc.”.

      I’m pretty sure you understood my point anyway.

    74. Cock Jowles Has Predicted the Last Three Knicks Seasons

      I’m not saying that Chandler can take 50 shots a game in the paint. I’m saying that if he’s that effective on the attempts you do take, it should be a priority to run those attempts as often as possible.

      The “maximized low volume” theory is tenuous at best, and I don’t see any evidence for it.

      If Player A is excellent at Shot Type X, design your offense to yield more of Type X. This is how the Spurs are so good. They have lots of great shooters (not situationally great, but objectively great) who are put into great positions.

      Parker may be the (2nd or 3rd) most agile player on the Spurs, but he often takes off-balance, acrobatic shot attempts. He makes quite a few of them, but I don’t really think that he is the primary reason the Spurs score the way they do. Does he create space and movement? Yes. Are his off-balance, fadeaway layups good shots? I don’t think so.

    75. Farfa

      I totally agree with you. Just try to imagine the Spurs with 2010 Nash (4 years removed from last MVP) at the helm instead of Parker.

    76. lavor postell

      Yeah but there’s a difference between Tyson being amazing around the rim at dunking alley oops and uncontested layups and even a guy like Splitter who can finish effectively or create his own shot when it’s possible and necessary and he’s a great passer. For example if Tyson catches the ball without an easy dunk or finish being available he almost always kicks it back out to reset the offense. That usually results in a less efficient look being created in the form of a contested jumper be it a three of mid-range jumper.

      It’s not Tyson’s fault the Knicks suck at running another set when their initial one doesn’t yield a positive result, but the result is that there is less time on the shot clock to run a play and usually the team scrambles to generate a shot which usually ends with some form of contested jump shot. The difference with Chandler and Splitter is that if you ran the same plays for Splitter as Chandler he could probably finish as effectively on the plays that Chandler does convert on while also being able to punish mismatches when a guard gets switched on to him to equally devastating effect. He’s also capable of punishing a defense with his passing ability if they send a double team his way, something Chandler can’t do.

      None of this is to say that Chandler is a slouch offensively, because he’s not and what he does brings value. However if the Knicks can generate 15 great scoring situations a game, but if only 10 of them offer the chance to go up immediately to score right around the rim and the other 5 require him to take advantage of a mismatch on a smaller player or some kind of finesse around the rim to take advantage of great position he struggles to do that and usually results in him missing a shot or kicking it back out to another player.

      Chandler’s a good offensive player, but it’s hard to get him the ball in positions where he is most effective because of his limitations.

    Comments are closed.