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Blog Posts (5)
- Estimating the Impact of a Player's Playmaking Through Numbers (EPI)
There are so many different ways for a player to be a great playmaker. There's those who excel at pressuring the defense to force rotations and open up teammates, and use their passing ability to get the ball to those spots. There's players who are just so good at passing the ball that they are consistently placing their team in the most efficient spots possible without forcing much defensive adjustment. Others may require unique defensive attention because of their scoring ability, and basic reads are enough to create a huge advantage over the defense. Some players have that level of gravity off the ball, and create opportunities for their team to score without ever even touching it. What's the most valuable form of playmaking though? That's what Estimated Playmaking Impact (EPI) measures, using a combination of both the volume and value of a player's creation along with their passing ability and team situation to estimate how much impact they provide as a playmaker per 100 possessions. The most prominent form of playmaking is creation, which is the opening up of scoring opportunities for teammates by attracting defensive attention. There are multiple ways to create these opportunities for teammates including spacing the floor, drawing a double team that creates a power play, applying pressure to the rim and opening up shooters, along with many more, and I feel that Ben Taylor's "Box Creation" model does a great job at capturing the value in all of them. Box Creation estimates the number of shots a player creates per 100 possessions. However, the metric can be a bit biased towards the modern era because of the 3 point explosion, so I use an era-adjusted version to even out the playing field a bit. While that pretty much covers a player's ability to create opportunities, we still haven't included the guys who are just so good at passing the ball that they are able to capitalize on advantages without having to move the defense. What better way to capture that ability than through "Passer Rating", an estimate of a player's passing talent. It's almost impossible for a player to not be adding at least some value as a playmaker if they are a high-level passer, but that passing ability becomes significantly more valuable as they create more shots, and that combination right there is where we see the most impactful playmakers: The final input within EPI is meant to make a slight adjustment for team situation, as it becomes harder to make plays for your team with worse spacing. This is where my Lineup Spacing metric comes into play; this is a simple, yet effective measurement that looks at the team around a specific player and how they shoot the outside shot, relative to their era. The downside to this is that 3 point data can only go far as back as the 3 point line itself, meaning EPI only goes back to 1980. If you're interested in viewing the results of EPI and the best seasons on record, you can do so by becoming a member here.
- The Most Glaring Snub from the NBA's 75th Anniversary Team
In NBA history only five players have ever scored at least 19 thousand points, 14 thousand rebounds and two thousand blocks. Four of them (Kareem Abdul Jabbar, Tim Duncan, Kevin Garnett and Robert Parish) made the NBA's 75th-anniversary team. The fifth? That would be Dwight Howard. When it comes to comparing resumes amongst the players who failed to make this very exclusive list, one man towers over the rest (and I don't mean physically). Howard is 11th all-time in rebounding, and all ten players in front of him on the list made the 75th anniversary team. He is 31st all time in win shares and 29 of the 30 players ahead of him made the list. The only other one who missed out is fellow worthy snub, Pau Gasol. But Howard's all-time statistics are not the only reason he is clearly a top 75 player of all time. Just look at his accolades. Side note; personally, media/player voted accolades are not the best way to identify how good a player was, but it does give some perspective to at least how a player was perceived at the time. For example, if a player made all NBA 10+ times, that means that many people believed he was a top 15 player for at least 10 years which does say something. Anyways, Howard has three defensive player of the year awards, eight all-nba teams including five first-team honors. Howard is the only player with at least eight all-nba selections not to make the list and is one of only three players with at least six not to make the list. If the officially top 75 players ever were removed from history, there is no doubt in my mind that Dwight Howard would be the current G.O.A.T. Howard was considered not only the best center in basketball but also the best defensive player in basketball. His defensive run from 2008 to 2011 was one of the greatest we have ever seen. During that span, the Orlando Magic never dropped below 6th in defensive rating as Howard led the Magic to a conference finals and NBA finals as the clear-cut best player. Not many players in NBA history can say that, including many on this historic list. Part of why Howard was such an elite defender was his generational athleticism. With his superior lateral quickness and unreal vertical leap, Howard was able to switch out to the perimeter effectively for a player his size while also being able to get up to block almost any attempt that gets near the rim. This athleticism is also what predominantly carried his offensive game as well since Howard was never a great shooter, passer, or post scorer. He got most of his points as a lob threat and finisher off of offensive rebounds or pick and rolls. Howard also has four top 5 MVP finishes including second place in 2011 when he (wrongfully) lost to Derrick Rose. The main reason Howard got left off the list is probably because of how his career has faltered since leaving the Orlando Magic. He has jumped from team to team, not finding a consistent home and ultimately became a role player who came off of the bench. However, in that timespan he did make two all star teams, two all NBA teams and won his first ever NBA championship. While it was not an ideal second half to his career, I don't believe that players' can lower their all time standing but only raise it. So if a player through 10 seasons looks to be one of the ten greatest players ever, even if he plays terribly for the next ten seasons that shouldn't take away from his first 10. That is the situation Dwight Howard finds himself in. Because when you just look at what he's done and how good of a player he was in his prime, it is clear as day that Dwight Howard is a top 75 player in NBA history.
- Estimating the Impact of a Player's Scoring Through Numbers (ESI)
Scoring is probably the most polarizing aspect of basketball, and that's because of just how many factors go into it. A lot of people go the classic "best combination of volume and efficiency" route to rank their best scorers, while others might value the actual scoring counters and versatility a bit more. Even then, there are other factors influencing these things, such as the team around each player, the role they are asked to play, and of course the era that they played in. I found myself struggling to really evaluate a player's scoring while keeping all of these different aspects in mind, so I developed a statistic that would give a more accurate depiction. Estimated Scoring Impact (ESI) uses a combination of scoring volume, efficiency, team situation, and era to estimate how much value a player provides per 100 possessions from scoring alone, given an even playing field. Well how exactly do we capture the value of one's scoring? We can start by looking at a player's actual scoring rate per 100 possessions, to get a good idea for just how much they're putting the ball in the basket. While this does give players an equal amount of opportunities to score, it doesn't gauge how difficult it is to score, which can be very dependent on the defense. Here's a quick look at the league average offensive rating by year, showing the drastic changes in how efficient offense has been over time: To fairly account for the difference in scoring difficulty over time, we'll have to use an inflation-adjusted scoring rate. Inflation-Adjusted Points Per 100 Possessions measure a player's scoring rate while factoring in the league average points per possession that season, giving us an actual "relative to era" scoring rate. The next component in ESI is a player's scoring efficiency, or how accurate they are when attempting to score. This is an extremely important factor that many seem to overlook, as the more efficient a player is, the less amount of possessions they're taking up to score, thus giving their team a better chance at more productive offense. The actual measurement used for players' efficiency is Relative True Shooting Percentage (rTS%), but I did make some slight adjustments to account for role and add a slight skill curve. With the way efficiency is weighted in my model, players who are above league average get extra credit for ramping up the volume that they are attempting to score at, meaning a player who attempts 20 shots a game on 5% rTS would get more credit for efficiency than someone attempting 7 shots a game with the same accuracy. Certain teams relied on their primary scorer increasing the quantity of attempts as a source of offense (Allen Iverson, Kobe Bryant, Carmelo Anthony), and the best way to put value to that is by giving them more credit for maintaining efficiency as opposed to 3rd/4th options who are receiving easier looks. Of course the other end of the spectrum means that players with below average efficiency get taxed for ramping up the volume, as they are doing so at a below average rate. When looking at hundreds of seasons on record, it's pretty clear that players generally become less accurate as they attempt more shots: Those few outliers that you'll see at the top right of the graph are the ones who get the most credit for this portion of the metric, as they're capable of maintaining elite accuracy while still providing lots of volume. Now that we've measured era-adjusted scoring rate and efficiency relative to volume, it's important to take the team situation into account. It's fairly obvious that it's scoring the basketball becomes much easier when there's more space to work with, and that's why the final input comes from my Lineup Spacing metric. This is a simple, yet effective measurement that looks at the team around a specific player and how they shoot the outside shot, relative to their era. The downside to this is that 3 point data can only go far as back as the 3 point line itself, meaning ESI only goes back to 1980. If you're interested in viewing the results of ESR and the best seasons on record, you can do so by becoming a member here.
Other Pages (6)
- Stat Calculators | Hoop Venue
Stat Calculators True Shooting Percentage Calculator Free Throw Rate Calculator Longevity Score Calculator Expected Wins Calculator
- NBA Basketball | Hoop Venue
Hoop Venue Hoop Venue is a database that provides both entertainment and a wide variety of statistical data for all fans of NBA basketball to easily access and enjoy. Gain access to thousands of statistical inputs and exclusive analytics dating back to 1955 by becoming a member . Search for any player or stat within the site to easily find exactly what you are looking for. Included on this site is Hoop Venue's Top 100 All-Time list that features in-depth profiles on each player, along with many other articles ranging across every NBA team. Use our statistical calculators to easily compute data for multiple metrics, including the sought after Expected Wins Calculator . Check out Hoop Venue on YouTube for more in-depth video analysis and visual breakdowns. Contact us via Email: TheHoopVenue@gmail.com
- Expected Wins Calculator | Hoop Venue
Expected Wins Calculator Expected Wins (Win Pace) takes the Net Rating of a team from any sample size, converts it to an 82 game season, and predicts the amount of wins that team would get while sustaining that Net Rating. *Note* Negative Inputs can only be reached by the "-" symbol, and not specific decimals.