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Layups: Z-Graphs

Posted by Neil Paine on September 10, 2010

A while ago, I posted a link to Drew Cannon's Basketball Prospectus piece on new positional designations, and it got some good conversation flowing about what positions and roles mean to a 5-man unit. Well, here's another take on team-building from a positional/skills perspective, courtesy of Fanhouse's Tom Ziller and Bethlehem Shoals. In particular, this is a very interesting way to visualize player skills (on a continuum from "big-man" to "point guard") and how they may mesh together as a team, especially in the sense that there are certain aspects of the game that need to be covered by somebody in every unit.


2 Responses to “Layups: Z-Graphs”

  1. Jason J Says:

    I like his sinister tetrapod of talent design, but it would nice to add a rating factor. Sure his second Heat unit shows 4 able rebounders, but none of them is exceptional on the boards (in the young Garnett / current Dwight Howard sense of exceptional). The diagram is very cool, but if you matched up two teams by diagrams, the one with more versatile players would always appear stronger than the team with more specialists, because it would have more individuals capable of producing in each category, but it might not actually be better in those categories by degrees of measurement.

  2. RobertAugustdeMeijer Says:

    Is anybody here perhaps knowledgeable and bored enough to create ratings of the Z-graph skills for, erm... many players? Subjective, indeed! But I believe that is how many of us, even professionals, put teams together.