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Archive for September, 2010

Layups: NBA 2K11 Ratings

29th September 2010

I'm admittedly a little behind the curve here, but I thought I'd throw some linkage to the player ratings for NBA 2K11 (which, as I was informed by a GameStop rep via phone-call several minutes ago, comes out midnight next Monday). Lots to disagree with there, so let me know in the comments what 2K's most egregious mistakes were... Also, for an alternate take, check out this blog where "Rashidi" offers his own (more reasonable) ratings. Happy gaming!

Posted in Just For Fun, Layups, No Math Required | 75 Comments »

Server Downtime – Wednesday Morning

28th September 2010

Just a quick note to let everyone know there will be a brief site downtime at 4AM EST tomorrow morning. As always, send us an e-mail if you have any questions or comments, and hopefully everything will go smoothly with minimal inconvenience to all.

Posted in Announcements | Comments Off

Layups: Basketball Prospectus on Possible Summer Busts

28th September 2010

For every bargain pickup in today's NBA, there's always going to be another player whose weak performance bears little connection to his outsized salary. A few weeks ago, we linked to Marc Normandin's Basketball Prospectus article about potential summer steals, so it's only fitting that we link again to his follow-up: offseason acquisitions whose compensation is not commensurate with their SCHOENE projections.

Posted in Layups, Projections | Comments Off

Layups: Hollinger’s Forecasts Are Here! (2010-11 Edition)

27th September 2010

The equivalent of Christmas morning amongst hoops stat-wonks, it's the annual unveiling of John Hollinger's NBA previews over at ESPN. And I'm sure the player comments are not far behind, either... Unfortunately, people who aren't ESPN "Insiders" don't seem to be able to access JH's stuff, which is sad -- but I guess the man has to make a living, just like the rest of us. And for those lucky enough to have Insider, enjoy.

Posted in Layups, Season Preview | 14 Comments »

Support Basketball-Reference.com, Sponsor a Page

27th September 2010

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And who knows, if you're clever enough, your message might end up on lists like these.

Posted in Announcements, Site Features | Comments Off

Fun With Quarter-Season Performances

27th September 2010

As part of Friday's post about the 2011 Heat's possible '07 Patriots connection, I had to run a little query splitting up every team's per-game point differential by each quarter of their season, and I thought we could make some use of that data today as well. To win 60+ games in today's NBA, a team needs to win 73% of its games, and that typically requires an average PPG differential of +7. This doesn't necessarily mean they played like a +7 team all season long, though -- if we break the season down into fourths (including playoffs), we find that only six teams in NBA history have ever played like a +7 team at every stage of the campaign:

Year Team 1stQ 2ndQ 3rdQ 4thQ
1971 Milwaukee Bucks 11.67 14.83 15.08 8.75
1972 Los Angeles Lakers 13.04 12.50 8.13 9.88
1972 Milwaukee Bucks 13.43 11.74 9.61 7.75
1987 Los Angeles Lakers 8.96 10.08 9.04 10.64
1991 Chicago Bulls 8.21 7.16 13.08 9.68
1996 Chicago Bulls 10.24 12.24 13.08 12.20

Even for a 60-win-caliber team, it's tough to maintain that level all season, especially given the fact that playoff games drag your 4th quarter differential down with their pesky increased opponent strength. Here's how the 60-win teams of recent vintage did it:

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Analysis, Data Dump, History | 7 Comments »

Will the 2011 Heat Emulate the 2007 Patriots?

24th September 2010

Sorry to go on a 2011 Miami Heat bender here, but BBR Blog reader Nick had an intriguing comment in response to yesterday's post about a possible weakness of the LeBron James/Dwyane Wade tandem:

"Trying to compare the Heat to anything that has ever come before is an exercise in futility. You have the best player in the league, who happens to LOVE to pass teamed up with the second-or-third best player, who also is pretty fond of passing to the open man. They may both have had similar styles, but they ended up in those styles due to their teams' set-ups. How LeBron will act now that he can people to pass to who are good in their own right cannot be predicted with the information we have.

There's never been anything like it before. Every Heat game is going to be worth watching, especially against the crappy teams, because you don't know what sort of thing they'll bring out when they're way ahead. It wouldn't surprise me if they have regular season games where Miller shoots 20 3s and scores 30+ points, just because they think it'd be fun to do. This Heat team goes way beyond special into the realm of surreal."

That reminded me of a Chase Stuart post at PFR in October 2007:

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Analysis, Non-Basketball, Offseason, Season Preview | 22 Comments »

More on Perimeter Players & Free Throw Rates

23rd September 2010

Last Friday, I posted about teams that formed as potent a slashing combo as the new LeBron James-Dwyane Wade duo in Miami, and found that in an incredibly small sample of similar cases (3, to be exact), at least one -- if not both -- of the players had to change their playing style to accommodate their new circumstance. A lot of people asked about the general effect of the new team member on the offense, though, so today I wanted to quickly follow up and look at whether the driving tendency of the added player correlated to the amount of offensive improvement the team saw.

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Analysis, History, Statgeekery | 11 Comments »

Layups: Former Track Stars Turned Pro in Other Sports

22nd September 2010

Although it's barely pertinent from a basketball perspective (Willie Sojourner, Fred Sheffield, and Walt Davis -- who apparently was a world-record-holding Olympic high jumper before his rather mediocre NBA career -- are the only hoops names on the list), Heimo Elonen has compiled a neat list of pro football, basketball, and baseball players who were track and field stars before pursuing a career in a different sport (as you might expect, lots of NFL players turn up here). All in all, it's an interesting piece of research if you're a sports fan.

Posted in Layups, Non-Basketball | 1 Comment »

Basketball League of Amazing Benchwarmers (BLAB): End of Season Wrap-Up

22nd September 2010

Hey, remember the Basketball League of Amazing Benchwarmers? If not, go back and check out these posts (I'll wait):

Basketball League of Amazing Benchwarmers (BLAB) Setup
Basketball League of Amazing Benchwarmers (BLAB): Regular Season, Stage 1
Basketball League of Amazing Benchwarmers (BLAB): Regular Season, Stage 2

Finished? Awesome. In short, the basic premise of BLAB came from a post about random Facebook groups devoted to 1980s-era journeymen, then one thing led to another, and next you know I'm putting together a sim league with teams comprised entirely of memorable but below-average players from the recent past. Now, after a quick 4-month hiatus, BLAB is back and ready to conclude its first (and, you gotta think, only) season.

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Insane ideas, Just For Fun, Win Shares | 4 Comments »