November 25, 2004

Godzilla youngsters: I know the consensus now is that Brown was far from the perfect coach for the Olympic basketball team, but this article on the current NBA season statistical blowup of the young guys who kept the bench warm in Athens quantifies that. And you need look no further than last night as perfect examples of Hollinger's argument: here and here. What do SpoFites think of the analysis of the article and the larger issue of emerging attempts at a basketball form of Sabrmetrics, begun of course by Hollinger and Dean Oliver, and which has morphed into some fascinating sites online?

posted by platocave to basketball at 10:13 AM - 4 comments

Hollinger is great. If anybody is destined to be the Bill James of basketball, it's him. Thanks to his 2003-04 Pro Basketball Prospectus (called "Pro Basketball Forecast" this year), I knew that Kirilenko and Redd were going to have break-out seasons and I won my 20-team fantasy basketball league. is great because it has some cool statistical measurements that show a player's effect on the rest of the team. The Net48 stat gives a plus-minus measurement of the team net points per 48 minutes of playing time for the player. For example, the Raptors currently run a point deficit of -9 every 48 minutes Vince Carter is on the floor. That's more fuel for the "trade Vince" camp.

posted by Scott Carefoot at 12:07 PM on November 25, 2004

Computers, as always, are your pal because these types of analysis would be nearly impossible to do (in real time) without them. I'm sure if we looked around we could find guys doing much the same for other sports (College BCS comes to mind) but will this really, in the end, give more people more pleasure from their leisure time or turn fandom into just another type of work?

posted by billsaysthis at 01:15 PM on November 25, 2004

bill: I think Hollinger's work is more useful for scouts and GMs (real and fantasy) than for casual fans. Casual fans can continue to believe that PPG, RPG and APG are the best indicators of a player's worth, and they can continue to be wrong about that.

posted by Scott Carefoot at 04:25 PM on November 25, 2004

I'm a big fan of efficiency ratings. That seems to be a good indicator of true value. Though PPG, RPG and APG are still sexy stats.

posted by WeedyMcSmokey at 10:20 AM on November 26, 2004

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