Posted by Neil Paine on December 3, 2009
Yesterday I rolled out a very primitive idea for evaluating players by logically weighting their regular-season and postseason production. In case you missed it, I put everything in terms of the typical team's championship probability, and weighted regular-season and playoff Win Shares based on how much each type of win added to the probability of winning a title. I still think the core idea is terrific, but when the smoke cleared yesterday we came out with a list that saw old-school NBAers and ABA stars dominate over modern players -- I mean, Cliff Hagan ranked ahead of Michael Jordan, for goodness' sake! What in the name of Max Zaslofsky is going on here?
David Lewin suggested we fix the problem of overvaluing the pre-expansion NBA by discounting stats from leagues with fewer teams than the modern NBA with a multiplier of x/30 (where x = the # of teams in the league that year). I liked that plan, and I also decided to throw out the ABA stats entirely; I don't have a great rationale for this, except that I'm not sure what kind of prestige the ABA's championship had next to the NBA's (that and the fact that ABA players were clearly overvalued by CPA and I didn't want to deal with them at the moment). So with that in mind, here's an amended list that looks at who added the most adjusted championship probability in NBA history: