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NBA Elo Player Rater

Posted by Justin Kubatko on February 8, 2011

Today I would like to introduce a new feature that I think will be a lot of fun: the NBA Elo Player Rater.

The Elo rating system is a method for calculating the relative skill levels of players in two-player games. The creator of the system, Arpad Elo, was a professor of physics at Marquette University who wanted an improved chess rating system. Although the system has its roots in chess, today it is used in many other games.

We decided to take Elo's work and apply it to the ranking of basketball players. Our player pool consists of all NBA players who meet at least one of the following career criteria:

  • 10,000 points
  • 5,000 rebounds
  • 2,500 assists
  • 1,000 steals plus blocks

All players have an initial rating of 1500 points. These ratings are then updated by randomly selecting pairs of players and having them "play" each other.

We start by computing the win probabilities for each player (let's call them A and B):

P(A wins) = 1 / (1 + 10^((RB - RA) / 400))
P(B wins) = 1 / (1 + 10^((RA - RB) / 400))

where RA = rating for A
      RB = rating for B

After the winner has been determined, the ratings of the two players are adjusted. If A wins the match then the new ratings are:

RA_new = RA + K * P(B wins)
RB_new = RB - K * P(B wins)

The "K" above stands for the "K-factor" and has a value of 24. (The K-factor was later changed to 10 --Ed.)

While if B wins the match then the new ratings are:

RA_new = RA - K * P(A wins)
RB_new = RB + K * P(A wins)

For example, suppose Michael Jordan ("MJ") has a rating of 2500 and Wilt Chamberlain ("WC") has a rating of 2450. The win probabilities for each player are:

P(MJ wins) = 1 / (1 + 10^((2450 - 2500) / 400)) = 0.571
P(WC wins) = 1 / (1 + 10^((2500 - 2450) / 400)) = 0.429

If MJ wins then the new ratings are:

MJ_new = 2500 + 24 * 0.429 = 2510
WC_new = 2450 - 24 * 0.429 = 2440

While if WC wins then the new ratings are:

MJ_new = 2500 - 24 * 0.571 = 2486
WC_new = 2450 + 24 * 0.571 = 2464

Here are a few more notes about the way we have chosen to implement the Elo rating system:

  • This is a community-based project with the goal of rating the best players in NBA history. In each matchup, the user should choose the player who they believe was the better player. It is up to the user to determine how much weight to give to offense versus defense, peak value versus career value, regular season versus playoffs, etc.
  • Before opening this up to the public we simulated 100,000 matchups in order to give the players more realistic starting ratings. These starting ratings do not necessarily represent the opinions of the owners of this site.
  • Pairs are not chosen completely at random. The first player is randomly selected to begin the process. Following that, a second player with a rating within 250 points of the first player is randomly selected to complete the pair. We did this in order to prevent bizarre choices (e.g., Manute Bol over Bill Russell) from distorting the ratings.

As always, please send us some feedback if you have any comments or questions.

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228 Responses to “NBA Elo Player Rater”

  1. AHL Says:

    I don't know if this matters, but it looks like the higher rated player is always placed as the first button, which seems, well, exploitable. I know you've already taken effots to limit this system being destroyed like pretty much every other Internet polling device, but if you made the name order random I think it would help too.

  2. yariv Says:

    How do you decide which player won? I didn't understand that from the post.

    Also, what about running something similar for teams? What would you get if you run the Elo system for a single season on teams? Just wondering how will it relate to other ranking systems.

  3. AHL Says:

    Okay I take that back, I just had an uncanny string of coincidences.

  4. yariv Says:

    Ok, now I get how you pick the winner...

  5. AHL Says:

    Yariv - It's voting. You vote.

  6. Justin Kubatko Says:

    Yariv wrote:

    How do you decide which player won? I didn't understand that from the post.

    We don't decide, the user does. The player the user selects is considered to be the "winner" of the match.

  7. AHL Says:

    At first, the 1,000 STL+BLK requirement seemed to be the weakest one, but glancing at the bottom it looks like the 2,500 AST only guys are all at the bottom. Any thoughts to tweaking it to make the list and voting a little tighter?

  8. DSMok1 Says:

    I could use some more data when making the decisions:

    Could we get listed the league average numbers for the percentages for each player? Comparing TS% from 1960 to 2005 is a little hard.

    Also, could you show a season log for a few of the most critical statistics, or at least, perhaps, their top 3 seasons in WS to compare peak performance to long duration players?

  9. DSMok1 Says:

    Also... it's rather hard to compare Josh Smith to somebody from the 80s, since he's halfway through his career.

  10. AHL Says:

    Well, that's the point of ELO. A snapshot today of comparing past and present. As Josh Smith keeps playing to the finish of his career, his rating will adjust accordingly.

  11. AHL Says:

    Haha, I just got LeBron James vs Michael Jordan. My day has been made. This is the greatest thing.

  12. Greyberger Says:

    This is great. I love it precisely because of the difficulties in comparing, say, Peja Stojakovic and Bob Dandridge (my first match-up).

  13. DSMok1 Says:

    I just had Muggsy Bogues vs. Slater Martin... which reiterates why I'd like to see the NBA averages on the shooting percentages. Martin had atrocious shooting percentages... but then I looked at the NBA average at that point, and what do you know? 37% was league-average.

  14. Justin Kubatko Says:

    DSMok1 wrote:

    I just had Muggsy Bogues vs. Slater Martin... which reiterates why I'd like to see the NBA averages on the shooting percentages.

    Sheesh, a little patience please.

  15. Ben Says:

    This is great. After watching "The Social Network", I wanted to see more of this type of thing! :)

  16. Ben Says:

    Still in flux early on, but Wilt and MJ seem to be pulling away.

  17. DSMok1 Says:

    @14 Justin: I didn't mean to be impatient--just adding another reason for my request! Thanks for your efforts!

  18. DSMok1 Says:

    Nice update, Justin! Looks good!

  19. Justin Kubatko Says:

    OK, I tweaked the output a bit. Below the "Tale of the Tape" you will now find a season-by-season comparison of Win Shares, sorted from best season to worst season. I also adding highlighting to the cells to make it easier to see which player had the better performance in each statistical category.

    I'll try to work on some other suggestions later.

  20. Ben Says:

    Damn it, Justin! Some of us need to get work done!

  21. Justin Kubatko Says:

    Ben wrote:

    Damn it, Justin! Some of us need to get work done!

    And some of us need to pay the bills. :-)

  22. Matt Johnson Says:

    Oh my god. This is going to be addictive.

  23. Jason J Says:

    Oh lord this is going to eat up some time!

    Strickland > Blaylock
    Bird > Stockton
    Erick Dampier > Danny Schayes (kinda)

  24. AHL Says:

    Heh, it highlights who has more turnovers =)

  25. Neil Paine Says:

    The 7 people who made Michael Jordan "lose" thought they were playing the Craig Ehlo Player Rater.

  26. DSMok1 Says:

    @ Neil

    There is a section of the populous that thinks Wilt>MJ, and a few think that Bill Russel should be #1.

    Looking at who has won and lost so far--it looks like a lot of people like the big time scorers: Maravich is 39-3, Melo is 32-5, David Thompson is 34-7...

  27. AHL Says:

    Oh the W/L records is nice. For the early part here we can see where people thought players started over/underrated. Looks like Pete Maravich was too low and Dale Davis was too high lol.

  28. Neil Paine Says:

    I really was looking for an excuse to make the Elo/Ehlo pun more than anything else...

  29. Daniel Says:

    As of now, MJ is pulling away at around 3100+. Wilt, Kareem and Magic are all sort of clumped together in the next three places; the last time I checked Wilt had 2978, Kareem had 2977 and Magic had 2976.

  30. Sean Says:

    After you have voted on a particular matchup, is the computer smart and knows not to offer that matchup again to the same user?

  31. Sean Says:

    I think that's more because of who happens to be within the 250 points of the scorers. For instance, I keep finding Thompson in matchups in which I think he's clearly the better player.

  32. Justin Kubatko Says:

    @24: Fixed.

    @26: Wins and losses don't really tell you much about how good/bad the players are. Right now they are highlighting players who the users thought were overrated/underrated by the initial ratings.

    @30: No, not at this point.

  33. Gabe Says:
    P(MJ wins) = 1 / (1 + 10^((2500 - 2450) / 400)) = 0.429
    P(WC wins) = 1 / (1 + 10^((2450 - 2500) / 400)) = 0.571

    Isn't that backwards? If MJ is rated 2500, and Wilt is 2450, then wouldn't we expect P(MJ wings) > P(WC wins) ? However, these statements have it reversed.

  34. Justin Kubatko Says:

    @33: Yes, I'll fix that.

  35. Gabe Says:

    PS - I just got Marques Johnson vs Bernard King as my second pair. That was one of the toughest decisions I've ever had to make.

  36. huevonkiller Says:

    It seems like a glorified popularity contest. We need the extremely elite (you writers here at this website), to tell us how good NBA players are. The average NBA fan can't even figure out who should be in the All-Star game. They're very moronic, emotional, whatever.

    The focus on career numbers is also very boring. The voting seems to reflect that, not a true comparison of "peaks".

  37. Myles Says:

    Unbelievably addictive.

  38. Justin Kubatko Says:

    @36: So many things to respond to...

    a) I would hardly call myself "extremely elite."

    b) The average NBA fan probably doesn't visit this site on a regular basis. Hardcore fans, yes, but average fans, no.

    c) I'm sorry this bores you, that obviously wasn't the intent.

    d) The issue of how to properly weight career value versus peak value has been around for a long time. The first time I remember being exposed to it was when I read the first edition of The Bill James Historical Baseball Abstract. At the time, Mr. James actually punted on the issue and supplied two lists, one for career value and one for peak value.

  39. DSMok1 Says:

    Are the top 500 in career WS in here? That would be a nice minimum. I would also like the top 400 or so in "best 7 years" WS to be in this list, or something of that sort. I tend to rate based on the top 5-7 years, the total overall WS, and also look at the WS/48, All-Defense selections, and All-Star choices.

  40. huevonkiller Says:

    Justin don't be so humble, you're a pretty sharp person.

    I trust what you write a heck of a lot more than what some homer fans who attack Neil or you, say.

  41. huevonkiller Says:

    DSMok, that's a pretty good criteria.

    Maybe adjusting for era should also be taken into account though? I think the talent pool has obviously grown.

  42. DSMok1 Says:

    @ Justin including WS above average, WS above all-star, etc. somehow would be a nice touch. Kind of like the lists over here.

  43. DSMok1 Says:

    By the way--a while back I calculated what "Replacement Level" is for WS/48, and it is 0.025 (if anyone is interested).

  44. Jacob Says:

    Justin, this is hilarious. I've spent the past 5 years of my life developing an all-encompassing player rating system (1950-present).

    Guess what? It took the BB-Ref users half a day to come up with roughly the same list as I did! I can literally see many players in the exact same spot as I have them.

    Wow.

  45. DSMok1 Says:

    Nice one: David Robinson vs. John Stockton.... I finally went with Stockton.

  46. Ben Says:

    It's so exciting when you finally get a really nice matchup. Just had Duncan vs. Shaq!

  47. Greyberger Says:

    Don Nelson dropping like a stone. Among active players, Jeff Foster, Derek Fisher and Dampier are piling up losses.

    16-59 has Nellie at 1829. Pete Maravich is 1826 after starting out 79-9. There's still a lot of sorting and settling going on in the middle.

  48. Greyberger Says:

    I had to go with Derek Harper over Action Mark Jackson. But I'm not happy about it.

  49. Greyberger Says:

    These decisions are too stressful! Just how good are you, Chauncey Billups?

  50. Jason J Says:

    This is stupid fun. My best matchups so far have been MJ v. Shaq (easy one, but fun to look at the numbers) and Magic v. Timmy (extremely difficult and real test of appreciating offense or defense - I went with Magic).

  51. DSMok1 Says:

    Justin: considering how well this seems to be working, would you consider a "current" ranking of all players in the NBA perhaps? Some sort of crowd-sourcing of the NBA players? That would probably be open to gaming by fans, though...

  52. P Middy Says:

    Yeah. This is too much fun.

  53. huevonkiller Says:

    DSMok, you have to be kidding me.

    The win% (on this page) exposes this is nothing scientific.

    ESPN polls are often incorrect and moronic, this is nothing different. Fun game, I question the "success" of it though.

  54. huevonkiller Says:

    This is why the common reader should have absolutely no say on this website, we need objective APBRmetricians to tell us who is better. Not people who enjoy picking Pau Gasol over Chris Paul on there Elo player rater.

  55. DSMok1 Says:

    I dont' understand, Huevonkiller. It seems like an excellent crowdsourcing project to me. The win% is just how often the given player was chosen in the matchup, which indicates whether the crowd feels the starting value was too high or too low.

    Typically, crowdsourcing projects have done quite well. Fangraphs' fan projections are quite useful.

  56. huevonkiller Says:

    DSMok and Justin:

    You both live in a completely naive world. Are you kidding me?

    Dude, LeBron is 517th, out of 535 in winning percentage. Thank you, you have said absolutely nothing to disprove my position.

    If you're trying to use this as proof of anything that is not only irresponsible, but ignorant. BBR needs to do their analysis and leave it at that. The fan vote validates me completely, jealous and foolish.

  57. huevonkiller Says:

    Did you really think that emotions would not play into it?

    Don't give me the Berri, "Wins Produced" propaganda. Any barometer will have a high coefficient of accuracy. 90-95%. This is a joke game, it is fun but stop already.

  58. Ethan Says:

    It would be cool to be able to see a player's max and min rating.

  59. DSMok1 Says:
    Rk	Player
    16	Jerry West
    17	Moses Malone
    18	Kobe Bryant
    19	John Stockton
    20	Kevin Garnett
    21	LeBron James
    22	Scottie Pippen
    23	Bob Pettit
    24	Elgin Baylor
    25	Patrick Ewing
    

    I dunno--that looks like a pretty reasonable place for Lebron, to me. Maybe a tad high. But his peak seasons have been better than just about anybody but Jordan...

  60. AHL Says:

    Eventually, as ratings even out, the W-L difference from .500 should show us how well they really are being rated (or liked by a majority of people), rather than how wrong the initial ratings were.

    For example, LeBron James has a hilariously low W-L% of the top rated guys (2735, 75-170), and you should probably trace some of the IP addresses to the NE Ohio area lol. Down at the bottom, Manute Bol (317, 55-50) is probably winning his fair share of games by name alone.

  61. DSMok1 Says:

    @Ethan

    The whole system is "spreading" currently, with the overall standard deviation of the ratings gradually increasing. What might be interesting would be to have the max and min rank of each player. However, that would mostly be an artifact of the initial placement roughed in by Justin, at least on one side or the other.

  62. huevonkiller Says:

    Lol Mok ok, what a joke defense.

    I'm sure it is just coincidence LeBron has the most losses, and that the only reason he is ranked highly is because of the initial 100000 simulations that are not fan related.

    Dude he is going to plummet further, morons are probably picking Pau Gasol over him a few minutes from now.

  63. DSMok1 Says:

    @AHL:

    Lebron or Garnett?

  64. AHL Says:

    However, Max/Min rating is a great idea, one of the staple things that make chess's ELO extra dramatic.

  65. huevonkiller Says:

    @63

    Dude just look at the link. It is pretty obvious.

  66. DSMok1 Says:

    @65 I'm fully aware of the win-loss percentages so far. Nevertheless, the ratings look completely valid currently. I think Lebron may still be rated to highly, in my own subjective opinion.

  67. huevonkiller Says:

    You APBR people need to understand one thing.

    People are idiots, they are not objective and they're going to vote for who they like. They don't have to recognize anyone for their basketball talents.

    They don't care about Chris Paul in his prime years, they want to make Rose the MVP of the league.

  68. AHL Says:

    DSMok1 - LeBron, for me. And via ELO, if his spot truly is 2735, just below Garnett's 2744, then about half of the people would agree with me. However, you see that's not the case, there's clear discriminative voting occuring against him.

  69. Robert August de Meijer Says:

    Quit all the LeBron hating, please. Otherwise this is the best rating system I have ever seen.

    How about an option for voting for anomonys players (choose between player A or B)? Perhaps averages of a players five best years?

    Currently the players with the best win% are the most overrated by people or underrated by stats. Once these balance out, I hope we'll be able to read a list of highest elo/ws48.

  70. huevonkiller Says:

    No Mok, you're not fully aware of much because you wouldn't be asking that question. It was a pretty obvious answer.

    Keep talking, let's see the ranking a few hours from now.

  71. AHL Says:

    Haha, as I typed this Tim Duncan just gained a boatload of against votes. Well it was a fun half day while it lasted, but alas the predestination of an Internet poll.

  72. huevonkiller Says:

    Btw Mok, you should be complaining about the initial 10000 simulations, read the directions. If you're upset with anyone, be upset with Justin.

    The fan vote has been moronic, the only way to get that kind of percentage is to lose votes to Pau gasol and other supbar players.

  73. huevonkiller Says:

    *100,000

  74. Ethan Says:

    I'm a competitive chess player, so that's why I suggested max/min ratings. However, I guess I'm realizing that it wouldn't be as useful/interesting. A chess player's rating can fluctuate with their current ability level, but all the retired players are pretty much set in stone.

    That is, Charles Barkley doesn't have the ability to surpass Tim Duncan, but a 1200 rated chess player certainly has the ability to surpass a 1500 (or theoretically an infinitely higher rated player).

  75. huevonkiller Says:

    65% of Sports Nation thinks Rose is the front runner for MVP.

  76. Ethan Says:

    Another quick comment/question.

    Will players be automatically added once the fulfill the requirements to be part of the ranking system, or will they be periodically added at some arbitrary points in time?

  77. Robert August de Meijer Says:

    How come Duncan has so many games played? Is there an option to select a player for matchups?

  78. huevonkiller Says:

    See, this is why we created the electoral college in the United States. ;)

    The fan vote should only be one piece of the pie, if any.

  79. AYC Says:

    You don't think Rose and Gasol are great players?

  80. huevonkiller Says:

    Compared to who?

  81. huevonkiller Says:

    Do you agree with the MVP voting each year? I'm not sure why anyone is surprised about potential discrimination.

  82. anon x 2 Says:

    you take this way too seriously, dude.

  83. Panic Says:

    Everyone should chill out...this is just a really fun thing that Justin and co. have created, and by and large it's made for a list that reasonable people can agree on. If you have serious issues with where players are ranked, just keep playing and wait for them to come up!

  84. Neil Paine Says:

    #77 - Part of that is because many people are skipping players they don't know. There's no way to pick specific players, but you can skip undesirable matchups if you want.

    Another theory for Duncan's many "games" that may or may not be true is the fact that he started out so high (top 5 all-time) and has gradually dropped into a lower tier, causing him to come up in a wider variety of big-name matchups. The people you're matched with changes based on your rating, so Duncan started out with the biggest of the big names and has been voted lower, where he's met a new group of slightly smaller names.

  85. AHL Says:

    77:

    You can skip matchups. My theory is someone wrote a script to look for the player they wanted, and kept refreshing until the name was found, so they could tip the vote. I think it happened to Magic too.

  86. Neil Paine Says:

    If someone wrote a script specifically to vote for Duncan, you'd think his WPct would be a lot more extreme than .442 (it would either be unnaturally high if the hacker loved him, or low if he hated him).

    Besides, if you had to name a player for whom somebody would write a script that screws with our new toy, I think Tim Duncan would be pretty far down the list.

  87. DSMok1 Says:

    Yep, Justin, it looks like there's some gaming going on.

  88. Sean Says:

    Huevonkiller has a good point that emotions will inevitably impact the voting; people have selective and recent memory, in other words the great player of today will - among non-APBR type people - usually win out against the great player from the past.

  89. Sean Says:

    Yeah, Duncan is probably the most underappreciated player by the public in terms of what he does vs. what it is perceived that he does.

  90. Panic Says:

    Something fun to watch out for: if Jordan happens to open up a 250 point lead, and those under him compress, then he'll be untouchable. It's not out of the question.

  91. Panic Says:

    ...and the "within 250 points" thing is no longer in play...I just got two players >400 points from each other. Has this been changed to a 500 point spread?

  92. Justin Kubatko Says:

    @91: Yes, I just noticed that before your first comment and made the change.

  93. Panic Says:

    I like it better this way...we see the big names with more frequency.

  94. Dan Dickey Says:

    Awesomeness!

  95. huevonkiller Says:

    #82 Nah i think it is funny actually.

    I expect people to actually look up the game and rules, before they talk about it.

    #83

    Well that's pretty unreasonable, I have things to do. :) Just recognize the game's flaws and have fun. But don't be sanctimonious about the way the game works.

  96. Ian Says:

    Hark! Proof that Adrian Dantley really did deserve to be named one of the top 50 players of all-time!

    In all seriousness, though, this is a blast. I have my own system that I developed for ranking my favorite albums and songs (and one that was in development for basketball players as well, but I needed some more info to complete), but it feels good to be part of a collective mass of click-happy basketball nerds rather than isolated in my own obsessive quest to determine what my 378th favorite album is. :)

  97. Jared Ras Says:

    Brilliant addition to the site, great presentation, etc. Some great matchups, too! After ten minutes, I've gotten Charles Barkley vs. Hakeem Olajuwon, Shawn Marion vs. Reggie Miller, Jim Fox vs. Rick Fox... brilliant.

  98. Ian Says:

    I'm awaiting a matchup of Eddie Johnson vs. Eddie Johnson! And AD's tenure in the top 50 has vanished, for the time being. :( Time to get Orlando Woolridge into the top 300!

    This is too fun.

  99. Jason J Says:

    FYI - If this was an App for my phone, I would get myself fired.

    And it is interesting to see where my memory bias shows up. For instance I've picked Isiah Thomas twice in matchups where the numbers against him because I personally remember him being better than guys like Reggie Miller and whoever else I picked him over. Can't begin to defend the picks statistically, but they were my honest answers. And for the record being both a huge Celtics homer and a huge Jordan fan and growing up in the 80s Zeke is my least favorite player of all time, so my bias is purely eye-test / memory and not emotional.

  100. BSK Says:

    I had a vote where my pick actually saw Bird jump over Magic on the top 5 of all time. I picked LBJ over him and it was just enough to swap Bird and Magic. This thing rules it!

  101. AYC Says:

    Nice to see Hakeem getting so much love. The folks seem to have settled on MJ, Kareem, Wilt, Bird, Magic and Hakeem as the top 6 in some order

  102. Art Says:

    I've read all the comments so far, and I couldn't agree with Huevon better. The public is stupid. LeBron is getting targeted. This will never work (even making the players' names anonymous, the public will figure out who LeBron is).
    Just like Huevon said, look at the All Star selections, MVP voting, or fan MVP voting. They are all terrible. People are either too stupid to understand APBRmetrics or they're butthurt over emotions.

  103. Ryan Says:

    Looks like you are the one butthurt Art LOL

  104. Joseph Says:

    Great tool.

  105. Robert August de Meijer Says:

    How come Kurt Rambis is losing so much? I would expect such a roleplayer to have subpar stats (leading to a low original rating), and then get boosted by the fans (who see the things that the boxscore doesn't, like hustle, clutch and picks). On top of that, I thought he'd be especially popular with stat-geeks because of his looks.

  106. Scott Says:

    Awesome tool. One thing that might become a problem though...

    I made a couple picks, changed my mind (of course) and went back to the previous page to revote. I could see people taking advantage of this option and vote for (or against) favorite (or most hated) players.

  107. DSMok1 Says:

    @ Scott. That's a big oversight on Justin's part (that that is even possible).

  108. Justin Kubatko Says:

    @106 and 107: I don't believe it will allow you to do that. After your vote is registered, you will get a summary of your selection at the top of the page. If you hit the back button and revote, that message will not appear, which means the vote did not count.

  109. DSMok1 Says:

    Have you figured out how come Duncan has so many votes?

  110. Justin Kubatko Says:

    @109: I believe I have figured it out, and I have added steps so it shouldn't happen again. I'm not going to describe what was happening, but I don't think it was malicious.

  111. DSMok1 Says:

    Excellent, Justin!

  112. Anon Says:

    "The public is stupid."

    They definitely are (just listened to the usual Skip Bayless anti-LeBron rant; of course he continues to insist that LBJ has not had an MVP performance in the playoffs even though this is utterly false) - but this tool shouldn't be seen as some definitive ranking of players anyway.

  113. Justin Kubatko Says:

    Anon wrote:

    [T]his tool shouldn't be seen as some definitive ranking of players anyway.

    True. It's also true that there is no such thing as a definitive ranking of players, which is why exercises like this are fun.

  114. AYC Says:

    Anon, your first mistake was paying attention to anything Skip Bayless says....

    I don't have a problem with pueople putting Lebron in the 20's. If we are judging players by the entirety of their careers, then longevity matters. LBJ has played under 600 career games; I don't have a problem with putting other dominant players with alot more games ahead of him.

  115. Justin Kubatko Says:

    I try to be as conservative as possible with active players by asking the question "If this player stopped playing today, would I rank him above X?"

    For example, I think LeBron will end up being superior to Kobe, but right now if you asked me if I'd rather have 8 years of LeBron or 15 years of Kobe, I'd take Kobe.

  116. AYC Says:

    Exactly. Lebron is the better player, but Kobe has had the better career (so far). I'm more surprised Shaq keeps falling out of the top ten. Shows what short memories people have.

  117. Jason J Says:

    I've had Shaq come up twice. Once against Jordan and once against Magic. Sorry big fellah.

  118. Anon Says:

    Justin is right there isn't such a thing as a definitive ranking. Which is why Shawn Kemp will get voted over MJ when I see the matchup. (Just kidding).

    AYC, agreed with LBJ. I actually think it's incredible how an eight season career is already ranked in the top 20.

  119. Sean Says:

    I had Bimbo Coles vs. Bingo Smith.

  120. JP Says:

    Does anyone know what 'K' factor is being used in these ELO calculations? Im assuming its 10 but havent checked indepth to find out myself. I use an adapted version to rate NBA teams (for betting implications) and have found a 'K' factor of 25 to be the best in a predictive sense. For the purposes of this tool, its a moot point and my instinct suggests using a 'K' factor of around 10 to be more wise.

    Regardless, a great little (addictive) tool. Ive had some matchups where the difference was more then 250 pts (apologies if this is an amendment made after it started and I havent seen it confirmed in the comments.)

    First matchup for me was "Ray Allen v Larry Bird." Had to go with Larry but seems harsh on Ray!!!

  121. DSMok1 Says:

    Jordan is down to 3rd??

    Would it be possible to make it so, after the algorithm chooses player 1 in the comparison, it chooses closer players in the ratings more often than further players? It's not as much fun if you make the obvious choice and the better player moves up only +1 (because it was obvious).

  122. Jason J Says:

    There still seems to be something off with the total games... I'm just looking at the top 5, and Magic Johnson has been in 163 more match-ups than Jordan and 142 more than Kareem.

    Maybe I'm not understanding how this works (I'm known for that sort of thing given my mathletic handicaps), but that seems wrong... Why has Magic appeared 1/3 more times than Michael?

  123. JP Says:

    Jason J,

    As long as all "entrants" have had a minimum amount of "matches" the actual number of matchups is irelevant. No player gets an advantage through having more games as their rating is just as likely to get more "defeats" as "wins" in a rating context. (There'll be more wins but each defeat hurts the rating a lot more then each win.) The number of "games played" is more useful as a reliable factor. Ie, the more games played, the more reliable that players rating should be regarded.

    As for the reason, Id speculate that its Magic having more players rated nearer to him (ie be selected by random more often) combined with some players getting skipped over more then others.

  124. P Middy Says:

    Larry vs Kobe. Numbers per USG% makes Larry WAY better.

  125. Matt Says:

    This is pure evil.

  126. Math2 Says:

    1. Thanks SO much for this amazingly fun game/project. I love it.

    2. Are ABA totals included?

    3. Also, maybe you can add a game limit as a criteria for being voted on.

    Thanks,

    Math2

  127. Jason J Says:

    Duh! Thanks JP. Work makes my brain a nasty blend of motor oil and gogurt.

  128. scott Says:

    There might be more usefulness to a current eli player rating

  129. scott Says:

    Elo*

  130. Ryan. Says:

    I just had Gervin & Pippen. Paused for about 20 seconds, cringed, and hit Gervin.

  131. Ryan. Says:

    I've had Doc Rivers, by far, the most times. And he's yet to lose... WTF.

  132. Ryan. Says:

    Wow@LeBron's position leadered by win%

  133. daveh Says:

    Please, take these silly ratings off the players' individual pages. Why is it now there? Horrible, horrible idea. By putting them on the player page, it purports to lend statistical credibility to something that just ain't credible. If you're going to do this on a different part of the site, fine, nothing wrong with that. But take it off the player pages and leave it off.

  134. Robert August de Meijer Says:

    I find it quite conveniant that player profiles show their elo ranking. Indeed, it is out of place. Perhaps place it near the bottom of the page, amongst the links? But as for myself, I don't mind it at all.

  135. DSMok1 Says:

    Because this is ELO, the most recent "games" have a significantly larger impact on the final rankings than the older rankings. However, in this case nothing has changed about the player's history... would there be a way to stabilize these long-term using Bayesian strategies in order to eventually hone in on the overall wisdom of the crowds (and not just the last 50 choices for each player?) Do you have records of all of the selections that have been made? If so, it would be possible to do a randomized order of the choices, mixing older and newer...

    Just musing... mainly because Jordon is 7th at the moment, behind Jerry West and Hakeem, and 1 ahead of Kobe.

  136. Justin Kubatko Says:

    @120: I'm using a K factor of 24.

  137. Justin Kubatko Says:

    @126: ABA totals are not included.

  138. P Middy Says:

    Magic, Oscar, Kareem, and Wilt ahead of Michael? It's true. Old people DO love to vote.

  139. DSMok1 Says:

    @Justin 137

    I would like to see ABA totals as well.

  140. huevonkiller Says:

    I also think this should be located in the "links" area on player pages. Not at the top.

  141. daveh Says:

    OK, #134, fine. Leave it on the player page, but bury it at the very bottom, like that tiny little cuckoo "Hall of Fame Probability" section. Putting it at the top merely purports to give it a high rate of credibility, and most visitors to the site look at this stuff, are passive readers and only look at it as needed, and won't and don't know any better. Again, horrible idea, putting it prominently on the top.

    I don't bother with that silly stuff, even though I've been an NBA stats maven for 50 years and this site has been, by far, my favorite NBA stats site. I think this site is great. But even I looked at the Baron Davis page yesterday, I looked up on top, and I said to myself, "Let's see, either these kids that look at this site, almost all of whom never saw anybody in the 50s, 60s or 70s play, are either naive enough to think Baron Davis is the 150th best NBA player of all-time, or they merely heard that Davis may have played the violin on tour with the Electric Light Orchestra back when they used to use strings on the albums."

    What the hell is Elo, anyway? If you're not talking about the great Jeff Lynne, or a British guy merely drooled while they were trying to say the word "Hello," I have absolutely no idea what it is or is supposed to be.

    Regardless, please, guys that run this site: do what you want with this Elo stuff, no harm, no foul. Have fun, knock yourselves out. But move it to the very, very, very, very bottom. That's where it belongs.

  142. Justin Kubatko Says:

    Let me start by saying that I'm glad that people are passionate about the site, because that means you really like it. However, can we please tone down the rhetoric a bit? Other than the blog, every other page that you see on this site is a byproduct of my work. So when people use words like "cuckoo" and "horrible" I tend to take it personally. If you don't like something on the site that's absolutely fine, but I'm much more likely to take your criticism under consideration if you ask me to do something about it rather than tell me.

    That said, I'll probably move the Elo ratings on the player pages to the leaderboards section, as that's a more appropriate place for them.

  143. JP Says:

    Justin, thanks for the response on the 'k'' factor. However, wouldnt it be better if it was reduced to say 10 instead?

    As Im sure you know, the 'k' factor is the part of the equation that defines how much recent results/votes have on a particular rating. Given that this exercise is going to have a volume aspect to it, shouldnt more votes be used to derive a rating? (I know all votes count but the older ones will have a relatively negligble influence.)

    If all votes are to count equal, then a 'k' factor of 1 should be used but I suspect the intention is to see how peoples perceptions of all players evolve over time. If so, I appreciate that a 'k' factor of 1 is too low.

  144. Justin Kubatko Says:

    @143: I thought about that this morning and I agree. The change has been made.

  145. Jason J Says:

    Justin, this is my favorite website. By far. The fact that all this data and these tools are at our disposal for free is ridiculous. Speaking of which, how expensive of a page do I need to sponsor for you to agree to let Neil add SPM to the player pages?

  146. DSMok1 Says:

    That helps, Justin.

  147. Justin Kubatko Says:

    @145: As you might have guessed, I'm not a big fan of SPM. This isn't the time or the place for that discussion, though. :-)

  148. DSMok1 Says:

    @ Justin 147

    There are better ways to formulate SPM than the basic version Neil uses here...

  149. Ben Says:

    I'd be curious to read an intelligent critique of SPM. Perhaps a blog post at some point?

  150. Justin Kubatko Says:

    Like I said, it's not the time or the place.

  151. Jason J Says:

    I keep getting repeat matchups. Someone tell Dr. J I'm sorry I had to give the nod to Kareem, twice.

  152. daveh Says:

    #142, come on, man. More Teflon, less thin skin. I said I think the site as a whole is great, I look at it literally every day, what more do you want. I just think that some of the "fantasy" stuff goes a little overboard, especially when it's made prominent where it doesn't belong. Grow a pair, dude. No disrespect intended in the least.

  153. daveh Says:

    And besides, I've paid a pretty decent chunk of change to sponsor pages to keep this site motoring on, so I think I'm at least entitled to my opinion.

  154. Justin Kubatko Says:

    Daveh wrote:

    Grow a pair, dude. No disrespect intended in the least.

    I have no idea how to even begin responding to this, so it's probably best that I don't.

  155. daveh Says:

    There's nothing to respond to, don't take stuff personally when it's not personal, it's ridiculous. Especially when I write I think the site is great and I've paid some hard-earned money to you guys to keep it going strong. I enjoy eating cheeseburgers a lot, but I don't see some cow in Iowa getting offended when I say I don't like the feel of a leather belt.

  156. Ricardo Says:

    Any way to request specific matchups?

  157. Panic Says:

    @Daveh: There are civilized ways of making a point, and uncivilized ways of making a point. Which of these do you think telling Justin to "grow a pair" falls under?

    @Justin: Thanks again for this, I've played with it almost every time I wanted to unwind a little during the day. It's been extremely educational, too - when I come across a player with whom I'm not familiar, it leads me to look him up.

  158. Ben Says:

    +1 to 157

  159. daveh Says:

    #157, I tell buddies all the time to grow a pair. It's like Old Spice deodorant, it's very civilized.

  160. JP Says:

    Anyone else had this matchup yet:

    "Karl Malone V John Stockton" ???

  161. Panic Says:

    @JP: I had that. My favorite so far was probably Ron Artest v. Rudy Tomjanovich, for reasons that were horrifying.

  162. Robert August de Meijer Says:

    I don't know if this makes me happy or sad: coming across underdogs like Sidney Moncrief, Dave DeBuschere, Fat Lever, Bob Dandridge, Alvin Robertson and thinking: "this is my chance to boost their ranking!"... only to find out they're pitted against highly guys because they're already gotten so much love from the other geeks :D

    Any chance for a WNBA version? I'm serious.

  163. aweb Says:

    Have you considered how to tweak it for new players meeting the qualifying thresholds? You would want something to ensure they show up more frequently in matchups until they reach a certain # (maybe 100 or something like that).

    Were you going to update the player list in-season? Guys like T.J. Ford, Hedu Turkoglu should qualify soon. Looking at the players and who doesn't even make the list yet, I think what amazes me most is how bad some of the qualifiers are. And congrats to Geoff Huston, apparently the consensus worst player in the list.

  164. DSMok1 Says:

    I'd still like to see some more in based on WS.

    A recent contest: Magic or Shaq?

  165. Jason J Says:

    I had that one, DS. Went with Magic.

    Anybody else surprised to see that Jordan has lost 25% of his matches? Still the best win percentage, but based on stats, rep, titles, etc. it's surprising to me he wouldn't be close to or over 80% win ratio. I guess he's just getting a huge percentage of matchups against top 5 type guys...

  166. huevonkiller Says:

    #164

    Well why not Shaq? He had a monster peak that Magic wasn't at, and had a longer career.

  167. Justin Kubatko Says:

    @163: I will have a system in place to add new players when they qualify. I'll simulate some matchups for them in order to give them a starting rating.

  168. DSMok1 Says:

    I went with Shaq based on longevity.

    Basically, Jordan with 75% rate means that 25% of people do not consider him the best of all time. There's a Wilt segment, a Bill Russell segment, perhaps a Kareem segment for longevity...

    If Jordan hadn't retired twice he would be getting 95% probably!

  169. DSMok1 Says:

    Hey Justin--

    At some point would you consider adding a list of most recent comments? So comments on older posts wouldn't get lost? Tango does that at THE BOOK blog and it works well.

  170. Justin Kubatko Says:

    @169: We'll look into it.

  171. Jason J Says:

    DS - yeah, I realize that, I just think it's surprising that of the 25% of people who don't consider Jordan the GOAT and cede him the win every time, every single matchup they've seen has been against someone they think is better than him.

    I don't care. I'm just surprised. It seems like the criteria to put Wilt ahead of Jordan is the same criteria that would put Jordan ahead of Russell, and vice versa, so of the maybe 6 to 7 players that one could legitimately rank ahead of Mike (IMO obviously), the reasons for doing so would sort of contradict each other at times.

  172. Math2 Says:

    1. I personally think that ABA totals should be added because of Dr. J and George Gervin, and David Thompson (to a lesser extent) because that was kind of their peak. Maybe you can add a new column of ABA totals?

    2. Still lovin' it!

  173. Jason J Says:

    Got Doug Christie v. Rick Fox! Classic!

  174. Ian Says:

    It makes me want to puke a bit seeing Manu Ginobili up at #29, but this thing is so fascinating!

  175. Math2 Says:

    There are so many lolwtfs? in this.

    David Robinson at 9? Seems high

    Wilt at 10? Low

    Wade at 15? Too High

    And there is absolutaly no way Kobe shouldn't be in the top 5 active at least. It's really amazing to see where all these guys are.

    @174 Same thoughts

  176. Jason J Says:

    I'd love to know how people are making their choices. How much are they weighing total games played, minutes per game, efficiency, all-nba & all-defense selections, etc.?

  177. Ian Says:

    Agreed on all points, Math2. That said, Manu is the biggest outlier to me. I think he should be around 100-120.

  178. Ian Says:

    I guess our perceived discrepancies will keep us voting! You evil, evil man, Justin! ;)

  179. Greyberger Says:

    Hah! Eat it, Manu haters! He's down to 35th overall, 10th active, between Jason Kidd's career and Dwight Howard's.

    I wrote a post about Manu's statistical resume. In short:

    A. He's one of the most efficient high-usage wings of his generation. He creates a lot of assists, plays good defense, and is a consummate team player.

    B. His per-game totals will be underwhelming because he played so few minutes. Look at his per-possession rates and he's a superstar. The reasons for his low minutes (sixth man role, coach who is stingy with his best players' minutes, always on good teams involved in lots of blowouts) are legit. He kills it in the most important out-of-sample test of whether he can play against starters, the playoffs.

    C. He would have had a rich basketball career whether or not he got drafted into the NBA. He's got rings, MVPs and Olympic medals in his den.

  180. Greyberger Says:

    How about some hilarious comedy match-ups?

    Ricky Sobers vs. Carlos Boozer?
    Mike Green vs. Micheal Redd?
    Ed Badger vs. Rick Fox?

  181. Ian Says:

    Oh, Ginobili is a good player, but I just don't feel he deserves a place anywhere near the top 50.

  182. Math2 Says:

    @179: It's not I don't like Manu, but there is no way he should be that high. Top 50 is too high

  183. huevonkiller Says:

    Uh yeah are people just looking at last night's boxscore?

    I'd like to see an "experts" ELO player rater. Make it more exclusive.

  184. Jason J Says:

    Still haven't got Ron Artest v. Pistons Fan Seat J11, but I'm going to keep playing till I find it.

  185. Matt Says:

    @179 If a player plays few minutes, should we rate him higher just because he potentially may have put up better numbers? I don't think we should be extrapolating numbers here, but judging players by what they did do and not what they may have done.

  186. DSMok1 Says:

    @185 Obviously... but would you rather have had Manu and his career or Jason Kidd and his career on your team? Sometimes having the better player for a shorter time (+ higher minutes in the playoffs when it counts) may be better. Not saying I'd take Manu's career over Kidd's, but for winning titles quality is sometimes > quantity.

  187. John Verdonk Says:

    Please add ABA stats too, this would include players like Connie Hawkins and Roger Brown. It would also completly show the careers of few other players. It will make it a lot more interesting.

  188. Math2 Says:

    @187 YES!!!

    IF not combined then on a seprate row

  189. Matt Says:

    @186 But does that even apply to someone who plays few minutes per game? I generalized a little too much in that post, but if a player's coming off the bench as a 6th man and playing few minutes, there's probably a reason for it.

  190. Matt Says:

    There's some serious regression to the mean going on here. A few started above 3000, but now no one is above 2700. It's quite obvious what is happening: someone sees that player A is lower than player B when they feel that player B should be higher, so what they see a match-up of player A vs anyone else, they have player A lose, so that their player moves up. Of course, every player has someone doing this for them, so everyone is dropping.

  191. Ian Says:

    In addition to hoping for ABA stats to be added, I think the Win Shares presented should be adjusted for season length. Players who had their best seasons in 98-99 or before the 82-game season are at a disadvantage when raw win shares are provided.

  192. AHL Says:

    Haha, I just thought of another way to get people's panties in a bunch: Do an ELO player rater for Hall of Fame players only. It would be like a community Simmons pyramid, only x10 worse, with additional flaming!

  193. Robert August de Meijer Says:

    Probably just me, but the more this elo rating looks like the Simmons pyramid, the more correct it seems.

  194. Math2 Says:

    except where is Bill Russell? I agreed with the top 6 mostly in SImmons book

    MAYBE Wilt up more and Kareem down, but whatever.

  195. Knick with the Knack Says:

    Incredible how volatile the rankings still are. In the last day, I've seen Jordan from #1 to #12 (I think) just a few minutes ago. Chamberlain was in the mid-teens a day or two ago and is now #2. LeBron James now down to #39 when I'm sure he was in the top 20 very recently. Kobe up to #9 and I think he was about #30 in the past day.

  196. huevonkiller Says:

    The rankings are clearly compromised.

    I'm sure it is fun for some people but aside from that, it serves no purpose. Whatever hint of scientific purpose it had originally is gone.

  197. huevonkiller Says:

    Also just to clarify, this is not a big deal but it shows that the majority of readers here are just casual fans. That happens everywhere, but real professionals are able to put aside their emotions and recognize greatness. That's not the case with the general public.

  198. huevonkiller Says:

    Lol, Kobe #1 rating all time ahead of MJ. LeBron around #50.

    Behind a bunch of inferior players, some with shorter careers than him. Nash, Howard, Wade, Pierce, Ray Allen? Confusing but amusing, I'll give you that. DSMok, your suggestion in this matter doesn't look so great now.

  199. Larry Says:

    People are intentionally against players no matter who it is against to lower there rankings. For the First week, Jordan was #1 and then all of a sudden in one night he dropped 400 points and was #32 on the 15th. Then he went back to #1 and then I checked and within 10 minutes he dropped 230 points to go to 18th.

  200. Math2 Says:

    WHAT THE F%%& IS HAPPPENING?

    The ranknings just got CRAZY out of order

  201. huevonkiller Says:

    Indeed, I thought this would become a mindless poll of personal favorites and I'm quite right.

  202. AHL Says:

    You gave too much power to the stupid. Increasing it from 250 differential to 500 or whatever counterend the lower K, and people still feel the temptation of knocking a guy's score just for the hell of it.

    Who cares if Michael Jordan gets locked out on top? Shouldn't that mean something? Make it 250 or less again.

  203. huevonkiller Says:

    Certainly the format could be better, but I assume people will continue their dubious voting no matter what.

  204. Matt Says:

    Well, it was fun while it lasted.

  205. Robert August de Meijer Says:

    Maybe the ranking looks better if there was an average of one's ranked place?

  206. Jason J Says:

    If anyone's wondering we've hit 718,226 games played.

  207. Justin Kubatko Says:

    Jason J wrote:

    If anyone's wondering we've hit 718,226 games played.

    You're double counting. The total number of matchups is actually one half of that figure.

  208. Jason J Says:

    You're correct. But I'm still impressed.

  209. Math2 Says:

    @201 Yep, it has now.

    @202 I agree. Why was it changed in the 1st place? And there should be a system for keeping the people who just vote for favorites out. I have personal bias, but it doesn't go against who I am voting for. Though stats don't say it all, there is no way that some people should be saying Duncan is better than Jordan or whatever.

    @205 Meh. Wouldn't ther be no #1 then because nobody has been 1 the whole time?

  210. Robert August de Meijer Says:

    I meant, a ranking (1 to 500 or so) of average place on the list. So, Jordan would be number one because he's on average something like #4.56 on the list and Kareem is second because he's on average something like #5.12.
    Maybe this would make the list smoother?

  211. Math2 Says:

    oh. Maybe. It's kinda screwed up already though

  212. daveh Says:

    I've said it once, I'll say it again (even though the guys that run this site temporarily fibbed or just lost their collective minds if they changed their minds again). It was a terrible idea to put this stuff at the tops of the player pages. It brings the intelligence quotient of an otherwise great site down to nearly retard level. It's the difference between a franchise with a GM named Jerry West and a franchise with a GM named Danny Ferry.

    Put it back AT THE BOTTOM OF THE PAGES, for Pete's sakes!

  213. Justin Kubatko Says:

    Daveh, I'm sorry you feel that way, but I won't be making any more changes for the time being. This feature has been incredibly popular, with over a half million matchups rated so far. From a business perspective it would be foolish to bury this at the bottom of the player pages.

    I understand that you have given money to the site in the past, but that does not give you carte blanche to toss around demands and insults. If you would like a refund for any pages that you currently sponsor I will gladly do so.

  214. Greyberger Says:

    Guys I just want to chime in and say what probably doesn't need to be said,

    It's just for fun, specifically the fun you get the first several times you get brain-wracking match-ups. For instance on my way here my first random match-up is Adrian Dantley versus Dennis Rodman. Impossible, right?

    If you can't enjoy that game anymore because of the social element, I suggest it's not for you. Think of it as a relatively inoffensive ad for a flash game you would never play.

    And Danny Ferry has to be doing something right or the Spurs wouldn't have wanted him back in their front office.

  215. daveh Says:

    Danny Ferry is back to running the Spurs' Austin Toros D-League team and scouting college bums because that NBA franchise had to perform its United Way and NBA Cares charity act for 2010. Check.

    And I stand by my opinion, business needs or not, putting this silly stuff at the top of the player pages as opposed to at or near the bottom simply tosses an anchor onto the site's perceived credibility and brings it down a notch closer to a childish fandom level. There's got to be a better way.

  216. JP Says:

    It was a noble idea that went down the crapper because let's face it, most fans are a) stupid, b) agenda driven, or c) both. Tim Duncan 92nd? Behind his own teammates? Kobe 57th? Time to retire this thing, IMO.

  217. daveh Says:

    #216, if some previous comments are any indication, the creator of that nonsense takes your criticism personally. Besides, they've already made it clear that in their opinion, which is not going to change, the increased number of web hits is far more important than maintaining credibility. Sellouts. Makes me want to hear Bob Seger and John Mellencamp croon a commercial.

  218. Larry Says:

    Glad they just changed this so that you can't go to the players page anymore to vote. This morning around 7:45 AM Central time, Jerry Stackhouse was #1 on this.

  219. daveh Says:

    Not quite, Larry. The stupidity is still festering right there on the player pages, nothing has changed. In fact, I just peeked at LeBron James' page, apparently a lot of geniuses feel he's the 129th best player of all-time, just eeking out the 130th best guy, that all-time great, Sam Cassell. This site has devolved in a major way.

  220. P.B.inLos Angeles Says:

    Hey Daveh,
    If we're to subscribe to - as pro Celtic/Bill Russell proponents opine - the theory that Bill Russell is the greatest center of all time based upon the number of championships he won, then Sam Cassell, with three championship rings to LeBron's zero, should certainly be rated above James, don't you think?

  221. Dave Says:

    Ha some of these are laughable number one Shaq has retired now why is he still in the current players top 5, 2nd Dirk and Jason Kidd in the top 5 current players over D wade and Lebron is obviously based on only one series and not their careers people are letting their emotions get in the way too much instead of comparing the stats and individual accomplishments do the talking for them. Slater Martin is a great example he's in the Hall of Fame but only has 7,000+ career points against a bunch of guys in the 50s and 60s mostly white, shorter, less athletically gifted in speed, agility, quickness, height, strength, size, etc. He doesn't deserve to be in the Hall and shouldn't ever beat any NBA player from 1980 on who has better career stats than him. Just because He got a ring or 2 while not even the best player on his team back then shouldn't mean he deserves to beat anybody who doesn't have a ring so flawed HOF and rating system since comparing eras even with comparable stats is already flawed.

  222. Dave Says:

    There are so many flaws because of people who aren't real basketball fans or are only fans of one team or specific players. Example: how the heck are players like Manu Ginobili, Bruce Bowen, Carlos Boozer, Marcus Camby, Chris Paul, Deron Williams who are not only still playing but haven't reached 10,000 points in their careers yet(while being mostly offensive players at that) ranked higher at times or voted on by idiots than Alex English (25,000 career points) and others like him sometimes a player who is so obviously better than one of these pretenders is a couple hundred points behind the wannabes it's embarrassing that this happens as often as it does even if some of the players are really good and will eventually be one of the greats(Chris Paul). I think some new standards for players under 10,000 points should be put in place like 6,000 assists, 1,000 steals, 1,000 blocks, 6,000 rebounds, etc. to even out who gets in.

  223. infinitesadness Says:

    what i learned from elo player rater;
    there are really dedicated haters out there for kobe&lebron and every other player.
    one minute kobe is in the top 10-rightfully so-mostly around 8-10 spots and the next minute he is hardly at the 80s.
    same thing for lebron one minute he is in top 20-30s range next he is out of top 100.
    what s the point of this?
    it was clear from day one that this wasnt going to work,so why is the voting still goes on?
    it was a good precaution closing the voting the players from their mainpage links but it still doesnt stop dedicated-and may i add obsessive-haters.

  224. Ken Says:

    I'm wondering if the odds are weighted somehow, odds of popping up I mean. Over the past week since I started doing it, I've had every player come up 50 times or more. Every player except the top 5 guys that is. Michael Jordan has appeared 4 times, he's the least, Magic, Kareem , Bird, Wilt about 10 more or less. And the really frustrating thing is when I've voted Jordan down, once with Wilt and once with Magic it didn't register. The other two appearances he's made I voted for him and it went through no problem. Anyone else have that problem?

  225. David Says:

    @Ken

    I'm curious as to why you would vote MJ down against Magic. I can understand Kareem from an accomplishments/legacy standpoint (and even that requires a bit of imagination), but given the statistics MJ was clearly better than Magic.

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