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Layups: Name the Original NBA Jam Players

Posted by Neil Paine on April 1, 2009

As a child of the early 90s, I'm embarrassingly well-acquainted with some of the finest early sports video games ever made -- Tecmo Super Bowl, Mike Tyson's Punchout, NHL '94... You get the idea. And perhaps the best early hoops game was the iconic NBA Jam, which introduced the concept of 720-degree dunks and literally being "on fire". So, courtesy of our friends over at Sporcle, we ask: Can you name all of the 2-man rosters from the original arcade version of Jam?

Posted in Layups | 12 Comments »

Win Shares & EWA: A Comparison

Posted by Neil Paine on April 1, 2009

After we linked to a Kevin Pelton post a few days ago that compared his WARP stat to John Hollinger's new PER-based EWA metric, we thought to ourselves, "Hey, we've got our own 'wins created'-type metric! Why don't we compare it to EWA?"

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Posted in Analysis, Win Shares | 4 Comments »

So, Who’s This “Replacement Player” I Keep Hearing About, Anyway?

Posted by Neil Paine on March 31, 2009

This past week, ESPN.com's John Hollinger rolled out a new stat that compares a player's PER (Player Efficiency Rating) to that of a "replacement-level" player, in an effort to incorporate minutes played into an evaluation of the player's worth. Said JH:

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Posted in General, No Math Required | 8 Comments »

Layups: 82games on Player Development

Posted by Neil Paine on March 31, 2009

I confess that I've been accidentally overlooking something important over the past month and a half -- I haven't linked to Roland Beech's ongoing player development study over at 82games yet. And that was wrong, because it's very informative stuff. Luckily, you can catch up on the entire series at the link above, and he's only a little bit more than halfway finished with it, so there's a lot more cool data coming up (including a piece on coaches and player development).

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Layups: Most Tourney Appearances Quiz

Posted by Neil Paine on March 28, 2009

Here at BBR, we love the basketball-themed quizzes they have at Sporcle, so it should come as no surprise that we were digging this one -- can you name the schools with the most NCAA Tournament appearances?

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Layups: TrueHoop on End-of-Quarter Scorers

Posted by Neil Paine on March 27, 2009

TrueHoop's Henry Abbott was recently watching a Blazer game -- I know, so what else is new? -- and noticed that Rudy Fernandez has a special tendency to score in the final seconds of quarters, so he e-mailed NBA bettor extraordinaire Bob Voulgaris (who tracks an incredible amount of data about every game in a database) and asked him which players do the best in the closing sequences of a quarter. And this is what he came back with... It's a list of the guys who have scored the most in the final 24 seconds of any quarter this season.

Posted in Layups | 1 Comment »

Who Rules the Top Defenses?

Posted by Neil Paine on March 27, 2009

If you're familiar with any of the advanced stats we use on this site, it should be pretty clear that LeBron James is having the best statistical season of any NBA player right now. I mean, frankly, there really isn't a box score-based metric out there that doesn't rank James as the #1 player in the league this season. Plus, many people (myself included) have suggested that LeBron is having the NBA's best statistical campaign at least since the league started tracking turnovers in 1978. Simply put, if you put your faith in the numbers, LeBron's gotta be the league's top dog this year.

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Posted in Analysis | 27 Comments »

Layups: Pelton On the State of APBRmetrics

Posted by Neil Paine on March 27, 2009

In his latest post, Kevin Pelton of Basketball Prospectus evaluates the state of statistical analysis in basketball today -- where we've come from, where we are, and where we're headed.

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Layups: WARP vs. EWA

Posted by Neil Paine on March 26, 2009

The other day, ESPN.com's John Hollinger rolled out a method for converting his famous Player Efficiency Rating to a "wins over replacement"-type stat. Now Kevin Pelton of Basketball Prospectus, who developed a similar metric (WARP), takes a look at the two methods side by side. Spoiler: mostly they agree (LeBron James owns everyone), but there are some subtle differences in the replacement level and the way defense is incorporated.

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Layups: R.I.P. John Brattain

Posted by Neil Paine on March 26, 2009

John Brattain didn't write about basketball. Rather, baseball was his specialty, and few people brought as sharp a wit to the blogosphere as he did in his analysis of the American Pastime.

But now comes the terrible news that John passed away this week, at the age of 44.

As someone who recently experienced a loss on this level, I know that there are few words I can type to make things better for John's wife and children. Besides, plenty of writers better than me have written fine appreciations of John's life and his work.

So from all of us at Sports Reference, I simply wanted to offer our heartfelt condolences and prayers to his family during this time of grief. I hope his wife and daughters know that many people all over the world are thinking of and praying for them right now, and I hope knowing that gives them some small measure of comfort (just as it did for me several months ago).

R.I.P. John. He will be missed.

Posted in Layups, Non-Basketball | Comments Off

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