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Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Knicks Morning News (Sunday, Oct 28 2012)

  • [New York Times] Basketball: McGrady Denies Money a Factor in China Move (Sun, 28 Oct 2012 07:42:10 GMT)
    Two-times NBA scoring champion Tracy McGrady has denied money was a factor in his decision to join the Qingdao Eagles in the Chinese Basketball Association (CBA).

  • [New York Times] Doctor for Amar’e Stoudemire Mostly Agrees With Knicks’ Prognosis (Sun, 28 Oct 2012 05:48:12 GMT)
    Offering a second opinion, the doctor said Amar’e Stoudemire would miss several more weeks with a knee injury.

  • [New York Times] Dwight Howard and Steve Nash Complete Lakers’ Powerful Starting Five (Sun, 28 Oct 2012 05:48:12 GMT)
    Adding center Dwight Howard and point guard Steve Nash give the Lakers perhaps the most formidable starting five in recent N.B.A. history.

  • [New York Times] NBA: Harden Leaves Thunder for Rockets in Multi-Player Trade (Sun, 28 Oct 2012 05:42:10 GMT)
    The Oklahoma City Thunder traded James Harden to the Houston Rockets on Saturday after the Western Conference champions were unable to reach an extension agreement with NBA’s Sixth Man of the Year.

  • [New York Times] Prokhorov Will Put Business Aside for Politics (Sun, 28 Oct 2012 05:33:28 GMT)
    Mikhail D. Prokhorov says he hopes to be a “third forceâ? in Russian politics, between President Vladimir V. Putin’s government and those protesting against it.

  • [New York Times] Thunder Send Sixth Man Harden to Rockets (Sun, 28 Oct 2012 04:21:20 GMT)
    Unable to work out an extension with James Harden, the Oklahoma City Thunder traded the Sixth Man of the Year to the Houston Rockets on Saturday night.

  • [New York Times] Off the Dribble: Knicks Rookie Chris Copeland Realizes His Dream (Sun, 28 Oct 2012 01:13:06 GMT)
    Chris Copeland is joining the N.B.A. at age 28 after spending most of the last five years playing in Europe.

  • [New York Post] Copeland cuts it as 15th man (Sun, 28 Oct 2012 04:14:20 -0500)
    The Knicks sliced their roster to their final 15 yesterday, cutting a player who started their first preseason game and keeping a player who was forgotten about until the second half of the second game.
    The team waived four players â?? forward Mychel Thompson, guard Oscar Bellfield, forward John Shurna and…

  • [New York Post] Knicks lack points with Amar’e out (Sun, 28 Oct 2012 03:19:10 -0500)
    The Knicks have few reliable scorers beyond Carmelo Anthony and Amar’e Stoudemire, so the offense has a points void to fill in Stoudemire’s absence.
    The $100 million power forward is sidelined with a ruptured cyst in the back of his left knee, and as The Post’s Marc…

  • [New York Post] Serby’s Sunday Q & A with… Jason Kidd (Sun, 28 Oct 2012 03:12:42 -0500)
    Knicks point guard, and former Net, Jason Kidd took a shot at some Q&A with Post columnist Steve Serby.

    Q: What was it like being a New Jersey Net in a Knicks town?

    A: It was tough because everybody loves the Knicks. They have such deep history, and for…

  • [ESPN.com - New York Knicks] Without Amar'e, Knicks counting on depth (Sun, 28 Oct 2012 05:00:17 EDT)
    GREENBURGH, N.Y. — It feels like late last season when Amar’e Stoudemire went down, with everyone wanting to know: Where is the secondary scoring going to come from?
    After practice on Saturday, Carmelo Anthony had the reason why this season’s team is better prepared for Stoudemire’s absence while the power forward recovers from a ruptured popliteal cyst in his left knee.
    “We’re definitely a deeper team,” Anthony said.
    Mike Woodson continued the conversation.

  • [New York Daily News] Melo will share the load (Sun, 28 Oct 2012 04:00:36 GMT)
    You’d think that with Amar’e Stoudemire sidelined for perhaps the first month of the Knicks’ season, Carmelo Anthony will come out firing when the NBA season opens this week. Well, think again. For now, Anthony, one of the NBA’s premier scorers, says he plans on being just one of the guys when the Knicks open Thursday night against the Nets in Brooklyn. Well, think again.

  • 64 comments on “Knicks Morning News (Sunday, Oct 28 2012)

    1. KnickfaninNJ

      The wagesofwins site thinks the OKC Houston trade was horrible for OKC basically because they rate Martin much lower in wins produced than Harden, despite similar points per game. But Martin’s surroundings, in terms of having quality players around him will be much better in OKC than anyplace he’s played before. So he should get better shots and less defense. (Wages of Wins of course thinks surroundings don’t matter). Does anyone here have comments on this?

    2. Bruno Almeida

      I think Houston definitely won the trade, but there’s an if: Jeremy Lamb looks like a future star.

      the biggest part of OKC making that play was getting Martin (immediate solution to keep contending) AND Lamb (possible future star to mesh with the core).

      so I think both teams ended up well, and Houston is probably still not a playoff team, but they will be intriguing as hell and are already one of my league pass teams of the year for sure

    3. jon abbey

      KnickfaninNJ:
      The wagesofwins site thinks the OKC Houston trade was horrible for OKC basically because they rate Martin much lower in wins produced than Harden, despite similar points per game. But Martin’s surroundings, in terms of having quality players around him will be much better in OKC than anyplace he’s played before. So he should get better shots and less defense. (Wages of Wins of course thinks surroundings don’t matter). Does anyone here have comments on this?

      yes, why does anyone still bother visiting that site?

    4. massive

      So because Wages of Wins makes an argument that Kevin Martin won’t be good without bringing up the fact that he will be on a better team, and you think they’re wrong? That’s hypocrisy. I’ve seen many people here make that same argument about Raymond Felton, despite him actually playing good basketball when the talent level and system were in his favor. People here seriously criticize them for not having a perfect system, even though theirs (WP/48, Points Over Par) is the closest to actually predicting how well a team will do.

    5. ess-dog

      Congrats to Copeland. Hope he sees a little court time. He seems like a pretty polished scorer, and this team’s gonna need points, especially until Amare gets back.

    6. Bruno Almeida

      massive:
      So because Wages of Wins makes an argument that Kevin Martin won’t be good without bringing up the fact that he will be on a better team, and you think they’re wrong? That’s hypocrisy. I’ve seen many people here make that same argument about Raymond Felton, despite him actually playing good basketball when the talent level and system were in his favor. People here seriously criticize them for not having a perfect system, even though theirs (WP/48, Points Over Par) is the closest to actually predicting how well a team will do.

      don’t bother, it’s jon abbey, he was a fencing master so he’s naturally a great basketball analyst.

      people are just against Harden because the advanced stats people harped him all season long and he presumably “disappeared” in the playoffs, which is obviously stupid.

      and yet, they keep defending Carmelo Anthony even though he never did anything in the playoffs, and magically this argument doesn’t work for him because there are 1 billion extra factors that are never related to sub-par shooting or terrible efficiency and high usage.

    7. BigBlueAL

      I dont like the trade for OKC at all but those 2 first-rounders next season could be very interesting because they are picks belonging to Toronto and Dallas. Toronto is improved but should still be a lottery team and Dallas could possibly miss the playoffs. OKC could have a couple of late lottery picks next draft.

    8. The Honorable Cock Jowles

      Bruno Almeida: don’t bother, it’s jon abbey, he was a fencing master so he’s naturally a great basketball analyst.

      people are just against Harden because the advanced stats people harped him all season long and he presumably “disappeared” in the playoffs, which is obviously stupid.

      and yet, they keep defending Carmelo Anthony even though he never did anything in the playoffs, and magically this argument doesn’t work for him because there are 1 billion extra factors that are never related to sub-par shooting or terrible efficiency and high usage.

      And Harden had a fantastic playoff run (his WS48 was something like .180) but a terrible Finals. (He must not be “clutch.”)

    9. iserp

      WP48 loved Kevin Martin not so long ago. He changes to different teams, his new WP48 could be anything random, who cares what his WP48 was before, it has no correlation whatsoever with his new WP48. That statistic is totally absurd.

    10. jon abbey

      I’m repeatedly on record as finding Berri and WoW laughable and not worth even the minimal time it takes to click through to go to their site. sorry if that bothers you, Bruno.

      and the issue with Harden is that he was a tertiary option in OKC which is why it’s silly to compare him to a primary option like Melo, but one reason this trade is fascinating is that we’ll get a great chance to see what happens when efficient players like Harden and Lin are given larger roles.

    11. massive

      Why do we just accept the idea that Westbrook is a good defender? When compared to some of the game’s best perimeter defender (in terms of DRtg), he doesn’t measure up:

      LeBron James DRtg – 97
      Tony Allen DRtg – 100
      Rajon Rondo DRtg – 99
      Andre Iguodala DRtg – 98
      Iman Shumpert DRtg – 101
      Russell Westbrook DRtg – 105

      Mind you Westbrook had the defensive frontcourt of Ibaka and Perkins to erase mistakes. He’s a high volume, average efficiency scorer good for 3.7 TOV/36. 5.6 Assists/36 to 3.7 TOV/36. But I’m relatively new to statistics, so I’m probably using them wrongly. Why do we think of him as an elite basketball player, again? I looked at his highlight reel and it’s really just clips of him dunking the ball and throwing lobs to KD. All-in-all, I’d much rather have Ty Lawson on my team (who has a better handle, MUCH better jump shot, and better statistics).

    12. The Honorable Cock Jowles

      jon abbey:
      I’m repeatedly on record as finding Berri and WoW laughable and not worth even the minimal time it takes to click through to go to their site. sorry if that bothers you, Bruno.

      and the issue with Harden is that he was a tertiary option in OKC which is why it’s silly to compare him to a primary option like Melo, but one reason this trade is fascinating is that we’ll get a great chance to see what happens when efficient players like Harden and Lin are given larger roles.

      Who gives a shit if he’s a “tertiary option?” He’s still tasked to shoot the ball when the play calls for it — does that make it easier to put the ball in the basket?

      And his USG was something like 21. We’re not talking about a guy who has a sky-high efficiency with a low usage. This is one of the most efficient SG seasons in league history.

    13. Juany8

      Wages of Wins doesn’t actually make any arguments, they simply say “my model says player X is better than player Y, so whoever got player X did better”. It’s the equivalent of saying Carmelo scores more points than Harden so he’s a better player, except Berri uses a fancy statistical model most people can’t fully understand. This allows him to deflect most questions about the validity of the system by pointing to things like year to year correlation and a high correlation to wins AFTER the season (WP is terrible at predicting what’s going to happen in the future)

      Unfortunately, I know statistics well enough to know that someone who uses the commonly available box score as scientific data and who thinks a linear correlation can fully describe a game as complex as basketball doesn’t know what he’s talking about, or he’s being intellectually dishonest in some kind of huge troll attempt on the internet. Berri provides little to no justification for many of his subjective assumptions. He simply translates how stats are valued at the team level to the individual level, he makes every player on a specific team equal defenders, and he assumes that usage and shot distribution is entirely irrelevant when discussing a player’s offense. Even Hollinger is becoming honest about his stat being a glorified fantasy number, and he’s better at predicting the future than Berri!

    14. jon abbey

      the last full year stats for WP (2011, I don’t see 2012 although I’d think it must be somewhere by now) rank Landry Fields and Ronnie Brewer ahead of Westbrook, Lawson, Noah, Harden and Tony Parker.

    15. jon abbey

      The Honorable Cock Jowles: Who gives a shit if he’s a “tertiary option?” He’s still tasked to shoot the ball when the play calls for it — does that make it easier to put the ball in the basket?

      yeah, of course it does, or maybe you thought that Steve Kerr and John Paxson’s jobs weren’t any easier playing alongside Jordan.

      anyway, again, the beautiful thing about this trade is that we can stop having this argument over and over. Harden is now a primary option, so we can see for ourselves.

    16. The Honorable Cock Jowles

      Juany8:
      Wages of Wins doesn’t actually make any arguments, they simply say “my model says player X is better than player Y, so whoever got player X did better”. It’s the equivalent of saying Carmelo scores more points than Harden so he’s a better player, except Berri uses a fancy statistical model most people can’t fully understand. This allows him to deflect most questions about the validity of the system by pointing to things like year to year correlation and a high correlation to wins AFTER the season (WP is terrible at predicting what’s going to happen in the future)

      Unfortunately, I know statistics well enough to know that someone who uses the commonly available box score as scientific data and who thinks a linear correlation can fully describe a game as complex as basketball doesn’t know what he’s talking about, or he’s being intellectually dishonest in some kind of huge troll attempt on the internet. Berri provides little to no justification for many of his subjective assumptions. He simply translates how stats are valued at the team level to the individual level, he makes every player on a specific team equal defenders, and he assumes that usage and shot distribution is entirely irrelevant when discussing a player’s offense. Even Hollinger is becoming honest about his stat being a glorified fantasy number, and he’s better at predicting the future than Berri!

      If you’ve noticed, I don’t respond to your silly ethos-based arguments, and unless you want to explain to the rest of us how microeconomics is a voodoo science and how the model is invalidated by the data we put in it, you should just save your “I’m an engineer, trust me” bullshit for some other forum that gives a shit.

    17. Juany8

      This debate was over a long time ago, Wins Produced can’t predict the future worth shit! Landry Fields was supposed to be a superstar and Toney Douglas an above average player remember? The Spurs traded for Stephen Jackson and Boris Diaw, 2 practically negative players by WP, and got better. When David Lee got traded to Golden State, Berri predicted a 50+ win team! Dallas was supposed to trade Dirk and keep Kris Humpries the year Dirk won the Finals MVP, and Derrick Rose was the 4th or 5th best per minute player on his team the year he won the MVP.

      And best of all, the Timberwolves are supposed to win 55+ wins this season if only Love (not Rubio) had been healthy to start the season. That is all

    18. Juany8

      The Honorable Cock Jowles: If you’ve noticed, I don’t respond to your silly ethos-based arguments, and unless you want to explain to the rest of us how microeconomics is a voodoo science and how the model is invalidated by the data we put in it, you should just save your “I’m an engineer, trust me” bullshit for some other forum that gives a shit.

      Well ad hominem attacks are certainly a praise worthy debate tactic, why don’t you actually counter my points instead of simply insulting me?

    19. thenamestsam

      I think if you start from the premise that they didn’t have much choice but to trade him I think this looks like a reasonable deal for OKC. They take a definite step back this year in my eyes – Kevin Martin is a nice player and his numbers should be helped by playing in OKC, but he wasn’t really the same player last year and either way he’s much more of a supporting player than Harden was. For all the people hating on Harden because he was “tertiary option”, they used him as the focal point frequently and his creativity was a significant part of that offense. But that step back could easily be offset down the road by getting Lamb (I’m personally not a big fan but they’re smarter than I am) and what could easily turn out to be two lottery picks. Given how close they’re going to be to the tax line going forward, securing a number of picks is a smart move. Plus taking a step back for this one year makes sense from a big picture perspective. This Lakers core will definitely be at its strongest this year.

      That said, I’m not sure the premise is correct. I especially don’t see why they made the trade now instead of waiting until next summer. I guess they thought it would be too much of a distraction, but I liked them to win the title this year, and now I’m leaning Miami. Very few teams willingly take a step back when they’re that close to the title.

    20. Brian Cronin

      I dont like the trade for OKC at all but those 2 first-rounders next season could be very interesting because they are picks belonging to Toronto and Dallas. Toronto is improved but should still be a lottery team and Dallas could possibly miss the playoffs. OKC could have a couple of late lottery picks next draft.

      Yeah, those picks are pretty huge.

    21. DS

      I think there is a protection on the pick that OKC receives that Houston had received from the Lowry trade. Although articles on the Lowry trade say it was a “likely lottery pick.”

      Does anyone know more details on the protection?

    22. The Honorable Cock Jowles

      Juany8: Well ad hominem attacks are certainly a praise worthy debate tactic, why don’t you actually counter my points instead of simply insulting me?

      What, you want me to defend microeconomics from your baseless rhetoric? No thanks.

    23. Brian Cronin

      I think there is a protection on the pick that OKC receives that Houston had received from the Lowry trade. Although articles on the Lowry trade say it was a “likely lottery pick.”

      Does anyone know more details on the protection?

      It was this really clever thing Morey did. He put a unique form of protection on the Toronto pick where Houston would only get it if it was a lottery pick. In other words, if Toronto made the playoffs, they’d keep the pick this year and Houston would try again next year. This would go on for however long you’re allowed to do it (I think five years) at which point Houston would just get the pick no matter what. So Houston is obviously betting that Toronto is in the lottery once in the next five years (and most likely this year). It was a great move and it made the pick much more valuable than normal (it is also protected on Toronto’s side if it is in the Top 3 – that slowly erodes over time. Top 3 to Top 1 to no protection).

    24. JK47

      So Houston will run this starting lineup out there:

      C Omer Asik
      PF Patrick Patterson
      SF Chandler Parsons
      SG James Harden
      PG Jeremy Lin

      The two weaknesses in that lineup are Patterson, who I don’t like at all, and Parsons, who seems like a pretty generic NBA player. They’ll need upgrades at those positions.

      I like their bench, though. They added Cole Aldrich as a backup big in the Harden trade, and I think he’ll be productive for them. They also have Donatas Motiejunas, who looked quite good in summer league and during the preseason, and who could be a really valuable piece off the bench. Shaun Livingston and Carlos Delfino aren’t going to wow you as the backup guards, but they’re both at least competent. You could do a lot worse than Scott Machado as your third PG.

    25. Bruno Almeida

      I think the decision of releasing Scola in retrospect was pretty bad, it wasn’t needed at all… this would be a much better team with Scola.

      I know they did it because of Howard and everything, but it had a pretty bad result.

    26. Frank

      The Honorable Cock Jowles: What, you want me to defend microeconomics from your baseless rhetoric? No thanks.

      This does not make you look any better. I haven’t checked to see if Berri actually said these things, but assuming he did, I think Juany8 wants you to explain them given your devotion to Berri-world.

      Juany8: This debate was over a long time ago, Wins Produced can’t predict the future worth shit! Landry Fields was supposed to be a superstar and Toney Douglas an above average player remember? The Spurs traded for Stephen Jackson and Boris Diaw, 2 practically negative players by WP, and got better. When David Lee got traded to Golden State, Berri predicted a 50+ win team! Dallas was supposed to trade Dirk and keep Kris Humpries the year Dirk won the Finals MVP, and Derrick Rose was the 4th or 5th best per minute player on his team the year he won the MVP.

    27. jon abbey

      yeah, considering they lost Scola, Lowry, Dragic and Martin, it’s arguable whether they’ll even be improved over last year. obviously the goal is long-term and not short-term, but I think the jury’s somewhat out there also. Lowry and Harden would have been a nice backcourt combo.

    28. The Honorable Cock Jowles

      Frank: This does not make you look any better. I haven’t checked to see if Berri actually said these things, but assuming he did, I think Juany8 wants you to explain them given your devotion to Berri-world.

      What do you mean? Juany8 says that microeconomics is pseudoscience, and I have to defend against that claim?

      And WP48 has an individual-game metric called Points over Par that correlates extremely well with game outcome. Maybe WP48 can’t adjust for things like playing time changes, mid-season trades and injuries, but it does a pretty damn good job of it. Juany8 is a guy who says that we can’t successfully use ANY box score metric, so his analysis is as worthless to me as mine is to him. I’m comfortable with that. But I don’t look at his list of outliers and see the model invalidated. And I certainly don’t look at jon abbey’s incredulity and see any kind of constructive analysis in it. We’re never going to meet halfway on this, and I don’t care to defend an entire branch of statistical analysis because some engineer writes “lol” at the end of his posts to show me how ridiculous my opinion on regression is.

    29. The Honorable Cock Jowles

      JK47:
      So Houston will run this starting lineup out there:

      C Omer Asik
      PF Patrick Patterson
      SF Chandler Parsons
      SG James Harden
      PG Jeremy Lin

      The two weaknesses in that lineup are Patterson, who I don’t like at all, and Parsons, who seems like a pretty generic NBA player.They’ll need upgrades at those positions.

      I like their bench, though.They added Cole Aldrich as a backup big in the Harden trade, and I think he’ll be productive for them.They also have Donatas Motiejunas, who looked quite good in summer league and during the preseason, and who could be a really valuable piece off the bench.Shaun Livingston and Carlos Delfino aren’t going to wow you as the backup guards, but they’re both at least competent.You could do a lot worse than Scott Machado as your third PG.

      Yeah, Parsons and Patterson are not ideal at those positions. Patterson had an abysmal sophomore year:

      http://www.thenbageek.com/players/108-patrick-patterson

      When your PPS dips below 1.0, you’re in for a rough time. Parsons is 24, so he’s got room for improvement (and he looks like an average player right now), but there are some question marks on that team.

      The thing is, they’ve got max room in 2013. That means they could potentially sign an excellent PF like Paul Millsap (4/$48M?) and still have money left over. Throw Millsap in the place of Patterson and you’re looking at a potential 55-win team, barring some kind of Jeremy Lin or Omer Asik disaster.

    30. iserp

      The Honorable Cock Jowles: What do you mean? Juany8 says that microeconomics is pseudoscience, and I have to defend against that claim?
      And WP48 has an individual-game metric called Points over Par that correlates extremely well with game outcome. Maybe WP48 can’t adjust for things like playing time changes, mid-season trades and injuries, but it does a pretty damn good job of it. Juany8 is a guy who says that we can’t successfully use ANY box score metric, so his analysis is as worthless to me as mine is to him. I’m comfortable with that. But I don’t look at his list of outliers and see the model invalidated. And I certainly don’t look at jon abbey’s incredulity and see any kind of constructive analysis in it. We’re never going to meet halfway on this, and I don’t care to defend an entire branch of statistical analysis because some engineer writes “lol” at the end of his posts to show me how ridiculous my opinion on regression is.

      I am gonna make a silly example to illustrate our concerns with the good correlation of WP48

      Points correlate perfectly with the winner of a given game. You calculate the points of every player, sum them, and the team who has more points has won. It is quite steady in the sense that a player usually scores more or less the same points. But it is useless predicting anything. If I sum Bryant 25 ppg, Gasol 15 ppg, … and predict the outcome of a given game, i’ll be wrong as many times as i’ll be right.

      In the same sense, WP48 can be considered descriptive; but i hardly see any predictive quality in it.

    31. The Honorable Cock Jowles

      jon abbey:
      yeah, considering they lost Scola, Lowry, Dragic and Martin, it’s arguable whether they’ll even be improved over last year. obviously the goal is long-term and not short-term, but I think the jury’s somewhat out there also. Lowry and Harden would have been a nice backcourt combo.

      Scola was TERRIBLE last year.

      http://www.thenbageek.com/players/109-luis-scola

      Forget the WP48 numbers. League average at PF in parenthesis.

      PPS 1.15 (1.23)
      REB 9.9 (11.3)
      ORB 2.8 (3.4)
      TS% 52.6 (54.2)
      TO 3.6 (2.5)
      STL 0.8 (1.3)
      BLK 0.6 (1.3)
      PF 5.0 (4.7)

      Losing Scola looks bad to you? Tell me, O Master of the Rapier, how bad their replacement would have to be to make him leaving a bad thing.

    32. Juany8

      The Honorable Cock Jowles: What do you mean? Juany8 says that microeconomics is pseudoscience, and I have to defend against that claim?

      And WP48 has an individual-game metric called Points over Par that correlates extremely well with game outcome. Maybe WP48 can’t adjust for things like playing time changes, mid-season trades and injuries, but it does a pretty damn good job of it. Juany8 is a guy who says that we can’t successfully use ANY box score metric, so his analysis is as worthless to me as mine is to him. I’m comfortable with that. But I don’t look at his list of outliers and see the model invalidated. And I certainly don’t look at jon abbey’s incredulity and see any kind of constructive analysis in it. We’re never going to meet halfway on this, and I don’t care to defend an entire branch of statistical analysis because some engineer writes “lol” at the end of his posts to show me how ridiculous my opinion on regression is.

      Bingo! Your OPINION can be whatever you want it to be, I certainly have nothing against you using Wins Produced to analyze the NBA and make predictions with. It’s when you call it scientific and insult everyone who disagrees that I have a problem with, there is no scientific law based on linear regression because that would be silly, a regression is an approximation based on past outcomes that is supposed to help predict the future. It is not a fact checker that allows you to state with full confidence that you’re right and anyone who disagrees must either have a personal agenda or be an idiot.

      I still haven’t seen one explanation from anyone why WP is even better than WS, and I’ve yet to see any kind of reasonable defense of the box score as scientific data with no significant sources of error. Seriously, the error margins on Wins Produced are probably huge, and unavailable

    33. Juany8

      The Honorable Cock Jowles: Scola was TERRIBLE last year.

      http://www.thenbageek.com/players/109-luis-scola

      Forget the WP48 numbers. League average at PF in parenthesis.

      PPS 1.15 (1.23)
      REB 9.9 (11.3)
      ORB 2.8 (3.4)
      TS% 52.6 (54.2)
      TO 3.6 (2.5)
      STL 0.8 (1.3)
      BLK 0.6 (1.3)
      PF 5.0 (4.7)

      Losing Scola looks bad to you? Tell me, O Master of the Rapier, how bad their replacement would have to be to make him leaving a bad thing.

      Scola was actually quite poor last year, he has value on some teams where there is no other scorers, but with Lin and Harden handling the offense there’s no use for a role player who can’t defend or draw double teams consistently. He’d be a nice 6th man scorer on a contender (I’d rather have him than JR in that role) but you just can’t rebound or defend that well with him as your starting PF

    34. Juany8

      Also, one thing I should point out about that “list of outliers” I pointed out earlier is that most of the players or scenarios I mentioned where front page articles by David Berri. He specifically wanted to point out, in bold proclamations that no one would agree with, that Golden State would become amazing with David Lee. He specifically made Landry Fields one of his golden boys, and defended him to death as a top 10 player. He specifically wrote an entire article saying Dallas was stupid for trading Kris Humpries and keeping Dirk, that the Mavs would be clear cut favorites if the players were switched, and then the Mavs go on to win the freaking title.

      When the players and moves you highlight and make a big deal of continuously fall flat on their faces, it stops being “outliers”. I wonder what the excuse will be when neither the Nuggets or Wolves, two big time contenders now by WP, advances past the second round. Or when OKC doesn’t miss a beat and makes it at least to the WCF. Maybe Lamp will turn into a WP superstar….

    35. The Honorable Cock Jowles

      iserp: I am gonna make a silly example to illustrate our concerns with the good correlation of WP48

      Points correlate perfectly with the winner of a given game. You calculate the points of every player, sum them, and the team who has more points has won. It is quite steady in the sense that a player usually scores more or less the same points. But it is useless predicting anything. If I sum Bryant 25 ppg, Gasol 15 ppg, … and predict the outcome of a given game, i’ll be wrong as many times as i’ll be right.

      In the same sense, WP48 can be considered descriptive; but i hardly see any predictive quality in it.

      But how those points come to be produced is a completely different matter. Wins Produced gives weight to individual statistics to determine which are more important in the production of wins. We know, care of Dean Oliver, that the four most important elements of team success, in descending order, are:

      1) shooting efficiency
      2) offensive rebounding
      3) net turnovers
      4) FTM/FGA

      We can predict the outcomes of games using these four factors and their associated weights.

      The problem with Wins Produced, apparently, is that interaction effects loom large in the NBA and distort our ability to predict what individual players will do in a given game. And while no one claims that interaction effects do not exist, the consistency of WP in individual players from year to year suggests that individual players are chiefly responsible for their own production. And furthermore, the simple WP model does not change from season to season, yet it does a remarkable job of correlating with wins from season to season.

      Asking it to account for significant factors like injuries (etc.) would be ridiculous. I simply think that it’s better than any of the other available metrics, and I use it accordingly.

    36. iserp

      We aren’t asking WP48 to account for injuries. But it is kind of cheating that the correlations of WP to actual wins are made after the new WP48 for that season is calculated.

      Besides, WP48 might be consistent, but has a wide spread even for consistent players. Let’s look at Kobe Bryant: even if you discount his last 3 years (if you want to argue he’s declining), his WP48 changes from 0.146 to .207. That’s like a 25% difference in any calculation you make. The truth might be lying somewhere in the middle, but the fact is that the number is only useful for predicting after the outcome is known.

    37. The Honorable Cock Jowles

      iserp:
      We aren’t asking WP48 to account for injuries. But it is kind of cheating that the correlations of WP to actual wins are made after the new WP48 for that season is calculated.

      Besides, WP48 might be consistent, but has a wide spread even for consistent players. Let’s look at Kobe Bryant: even if you discount his last 3 years (if you want to argue he’s declining), his WP48 changes from 0.146 to .207. That’s like a 25% difference in any calculation you make. The truth might be lying somewhere in the middle, but the fact is that the number is only useful for predicting after the outcome is known.

      There’s an average adjusted WP48 per season, but the formula is exactly the same. I’m not sure what you’re saying, here. How could we possibly predict the future without past outcomes?

    38. chrisk06811

      What was HOU going to trade for Howard? It must have included Martin, or I doubt the salaries would have worked. It looks to me like the 2 picks and Lamb is probably pretty damn close to what they offered. Granted, they were the 3rd best offer that Orlando got, but it kinda looks like they gave up just as much for Harden.

    39. jon abbey

      just got invited to opening night in Brooklyn (assuming Brooklyn still exists on Thursday), YAY!

    40. KnickfaninNJ

      THCJ,

      I think that Berri’s stats do have value, but not so much in the case of Harden versus Martin. The stats are good for identifying undervalued college players. Even if you think Fields is overvalued by them, he clearly was better than his position in the draft, and Berri’s stats predicted that. And that goes for Lin, and Faried and others too. But the stats intrinsically assume that a players role doesn’t change when predicting future performance. Take a look again at the highlights of Harden in the video you posted. In the case of the jump shots he sinks in the beginning of the video, the defender is playing off him and looks surprised that Harden is going to be the offense and doesn’t really get there quite in time to effectively defend the shot. In the case of the drives to the basket, some were impressive, but in many of them Harden got into motion before anyone really committed to defending him so he was moving to the basket and and they were not, which is a difficult situation to defend. If he was the prime scoring option for OKC, he would have been defended differently. In the final drive, he was defended by Jason Kidd, and he did beat Kidd and make it to the basket. But I am not sure Martin couldn’t do that too.

      So I agree with the other posters, it will be interesting to see how Harden does when he’s defended like he is the primary option.

      John, congrats!!! I think Brooklyn will exist, but maybe the arena won’t be too packed.

    41. Brian Cronin

      I am not enjoying seeing OKC trying to spin Harden as greedy for getting the max contract everyone knew he was going to get after this season. I have no problem with OKC deciding that they’d rather hurt their basketball club this year while possibly helping the club going forward and avoiding paying luxury tax next year. Whatever, it’s their team, they can do whatever they want. But this idea that Harden is supposed to take nearly $20 million less than he’s getting from Houston just because he wants to help out the Thunder owners, who are making money hand over fist in OKC, save some money is just absurd.

    42. knicknyk

      Brian Cronin:
      I am not enjoying seeing OKC trying to spin Harden as greedy for getting the max contract everyone knew he was going to get after this season. I have no problem with OKC deciding that they’d rather hurt their basketball club this year while possibly helping the club going forward and avoiding paying luxury tax next year. Whatever, it’s their team, they can do whatever they want. But this idea that Harden is supposed to take nearly $20 million less than he’s getting from Houston just because he wants to help out the Thunder owners, who are making money hand over fist in OKC, save some money is just absurd.

      Are they seriously doing this trying to spin him off as greedy?

    43. Juany8

      Brian Cronin:
      I am not enjoying seeing OKC trying to spin Harden as greedy for getting the max contract everyone knew he was going to get after this season. I have no problem with OKC deciding that they’d rather hurt their basketball club this year while possibly helping the club going forward and avoiding paying luxury tax next year. Whatever, it’s their team, they can do whatever they want. But this idea that Harden is supposed to take nearly $20 million less than he’s getting from Houston just because he wants to help out the Thunder owners, who are making money hand over fist in OKC, save some money is just absurd.

      Let’s be fair here, Harden couldn’t get that $20 million from the Thunder, so he really turned down this deal for that $4.5 million difference the Thunder wouldn’t go up past. Unless he straight up did not want to stay with the Thunder, he really did leave over a difference of a couple of million, although of course leaving did net him an extra $20 million in Houston, plus a starting, featured role. I think it’s fair to ask if Harden was really that ok with coming off the bench for extended periods of time, especially since it was clear during the Finals that the Thunder’s starting unit sucked, and that Brooks had no idea how to adjust. If Brooks ends up benching Kevin Martin and shutting down Lamb entirely, Presti will have been screwed over by his own coach lol. He already cost them any realistic chance they had at a title last year…

    44. Juany8

      I should also point out that Westbrook, (who Presti clearly thinks is the better player) left his Rose rule max contract on the table, meaning he left a lot of money the Thunder could have signed him for on the table. Ibaka is more of a question mark, but there is certainly a chance he would have commanded an extra couple of million on the open market, especially since he has a legit chance to improve this season.

      I’m not saying Harden is greedy, we’re talking about a couple of million dollars, at least part of which is probably going to his family, plus he has no guarantee Presti won’t try to trade him later. That being said, he clearly didn’t value staying in OKC that much, he’s fully responsible for being in Houston now and no one should feel sorry for either OKC or Harden. They both wanted the money and now they’re going to have it

    45. Brian Cronin

      Oh yeah, of course we shouldn’t feel sorry for Harden. I just don’t like the idea of trying to present him as greedy (by the way, I believe OKC inflated the amount of money they were offering in the media a bit – their last offer was “only” 4 years/$52 million, so just a little more than Ibaka got).

    46. JC Knickfan

      I believe Houston going offer 5-year $78.6 Million which significantly more then OKC offer. There also no state income tax which drives net amount up. Plus you never when you could have career ending injury so I personal would have look for most money possible also.

    47. ephus

      The fifth year for Harden in Houston will probably be at a lower rate than he could get if he remained a max player at the end of the four year extension from OKC. Basketball-related revenues are going to go way up in 2016-17, when the new national media contracts get signed. So the salary cap will go up, as will the max salary. Plus, Harden would be eligible for 30% of the salary cap, rather than 25%. But it would be a huge risk for Harden to wait to guarantee that fifth year.

    48. Juany8

      Harden certainly deserved to get payed what any team was willing to pay him, but OKC’s players clearly had a history of signing extensions early for less than they would receive in the open market (except Durant, who’s the cornerstone) If Harden was serious about staying in OKC, he should have realized he had to take somewhat of a paycut. If he just wanted to get his money, then he did and he should be quite happy in Houston as the main guy. Either way, both sides sacrificed winning for money, which is just how it goes in the NBA sometimes

    49. Z-man

      Looking forward to seeing how Houston does. They aren’t terrible on paper (especially if that paper is a WoW journal article) but it will be interesting to see whether changing roles for Asik and Harden will make a difference with their production, especially with a precocious neophyte handling PG duties.

    50. iserp

      Z-man: Looking forward to seeing how Houston does. They aren’t terrible on paper (especially if that paper is a WoW journal article) but it will be interesting to see whether changing roles for Asik and Harden will make a difference with their production, especially with a precocious neophyte handling PG duties.

      I wouldn’t worry too much about Harden. He is already a top 3 SG, and he will likely improve. Even if his %TS suffers because of the added responsability, he’s still gonna be great. Asik is a solid defensive C, if he controls his fouls, he’s a good anchor there. That’s probably the 2 toughest positions to fill right now in the NBA. I am skeptic on Lin, perhaps i am bitter on the situation, but PG is the easiest position to fill. Montiejunas looks like a nice prospect. Still, i don’t think they make the playoffs this year.

      We will see if they can use their max space.

    51. KnickfaninNJ

      I don’t money was the only factor in trading Harden to Houston. Of course OKC shopped around once they found Harden was too expensive. I think they may havfe thought the Houston deal was too good to pass up. They got a reasonable replacement player who costs less than Harden and they got three draft picks, some which could end up in the lottery. If Martin plays well for them, people may look back at this trade and say OKC got a steal. And there’s no way you can say OKC got ripped off in this trade. I think this trade is a win for OKC almost for sure. Time will tell if it’s a win for Houston too.

    52. The Honorable Cock Jowles

      KnickfaninNJ:
      I don’t money was the only factor in trading Harden to Houston. Of course OKC shopped around once they found Harden was too expensive.I think they may havfe thought the Houston deal was too good to pass up.They got a reasonable replacement player who costs less than Harden and they got three draft picks, some which could end up in the lottery. If Martin plays well for them, people may look back at this trade and say OKC got a steal.And there’s no way you can say OKC got ripped off in this trade.I think this trade is a win for OKC almost for sure. Time will tell if it’s a win for Houston too.

      That’s if you think giving up a SG who shoots 66% TS on 21 USG for one who shoots 54% TS (and is five years older) is a good deal. Harden can’t be replaced.

    53. KnickfaninNJ

      THCJ

      I agree about the five years older part. That’s definitely a downside. But I am not sure that the TS numbers will hold up. Harden could have had a career year last year and Martin certainly didn’t. And I think the OKC situation will be more favorable for Martin to perform well than Houston would have been.

      Don’t get me wrong, I don’t think Martin’s better than Harden. I just think the trade was worth it given that OKC got three good draft choices along with Martin. And I think that OKC will still be a good team with championship aspirationis.

    54. Juany8

      The Honorable Cock Jowles: That’s if you think giving up a SG who shoots 66% TS on 21 USG for one who shoots 54% TS (and is five years older) is a good deal. Harden can’t be replaced.

      Out of the past 6 years, Martin has had 4 seasons above 60 TS%. One just 2 years ago. He had a lot of injuries last year and was disgruntled by the Pau Gasol trade, I wouldn’t be the slightest bit surprised if Kevin Martin had a higher TS% than Harden this year, unless of course he gets injured again

    55. massive

      Another factor people are forgetting in this whole trade for OKC:

      At the end of games last year (under 2 minutes to go in the 4th quarter), Scott Brooks would put James Harden at the point guard slot, with Westbrook playing off the ball. Scott Brooks trusted James Harden’s abilities to make plays and not turn the ball over more than he did with All-NBA PG Russell Westbrook. Without Harden, you no longer have that late game option. You can’t put Kevin Martin at point guard, and Eric Maynor definitely won’t be on court since Martin, Thabo, and Westbrook are all better guards than him. I won’t be surprised if this team loses more close games this year.

      They will definitely have championship aspirations, but they won’t win one now. Trading James Harden handed LAL an NBA Finals berth (unless the Nuggets can outrun everybody this year).

    56. Juany8

      massive:
      Another factor people are forgetting in this whole trade for OKC:

      At the end of games last year (under 2 minutes to go in the 4th quarter), Scott Brooks would put James Harden at the point guard slot, with Westbrook playing off the ball. Scott Brooks trusted James Harden’s abilities to make plays and not turn the ball over more than he did with All-NBA PG Russell Westbrook. Without Harden, you no longer have that late game option. You can’t put Kevin Martin at point guard, and Eric Maynor definitely won’t be on court since Martin, Thabo, and Westbrook are all better guards than him. I won’t be surprised if this team loses more close games this year.

      They will definitely have championship aspirations, but they won’t win one now. Trading James Harden handed LAL an NBA Finals berth (unless the Nuggets can outrun everybody this year).

      The Nuggets aren’t getting past OKC or the Spurs unless they figure out how to make Iguodala guard Westbrook/Durant or Parker/Ginobli at the same time. Even then it doesn’t give them a good answer for Kevin Martin, and the Spurs will destroy the Nuggets big men in the pick and roll. I’m still not sure the Nuggets are even better than the Clippers or Grizzlies, why are people assuming a team with literally 1 above average defender in their top 5 players is going to realistically contend? They’ll make a lot of noise in the regular season and possibly even get home court, but they’re not getting out of the second round unless Faried turns into the superstar WP pretends he is

    57. massive

      Okay, we’ll see how good the Nuggets are this year. That team is going to surprise a lot of people (if their season isn’t derailed by injuries), so don’t be surprised when THCJ is here talking about the Nuggets in May. I’m not gonna spend time on a Knicks blog with (mostly) Knicks fans discussing the Nuggets.

    58. Juany8

      massive:
      Okay, we’ll see how good the Nuggets are this year. That team is going to surprise a lot of people (if their season isn’t derailed by injuries), so don’t be surprised when THCJ is here talking about the Nuggets in May. I’m not gonna spend time on a Knicks blog with (mostly) Knicks fans discussing the Nuggets.

      Let’s be fair here, John Hollinger now has them as the second seed in the West, for the second straight season. Berri isn’t the only analyst high on the Nuggets, most statistical models project the Nuggets as a high win team. It’s a shame how that worked out for the Nuggets last year….

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