Comments on: More Aging Stuff NBA & ABA Basketball Statistics & History Mon, 21 Nov 2011 20:56:04 +0000 hourly 1 By: Mike G Tue, 21 Jul 2009 20:47:07 +0000 Anyone home?

By: Mike G Mon, 20 Jul 2009 13:37:23 +0000 The graph is so spiky, it's hard to see a trend sometimes. How might you smooth it out some?

Given that the (5 years) age blocks are arbitrary, and compounded by the fact a player isn't a precise (integer) age in a given season -- what if you count all 23-25 year olds as '24', etc. You'd get an inflated total number of 'players' (or WS in this case), but they'd still add up to 100%.

For example, there's a crazy spike of over-30 player-WS in 1967 (I think), sandwiched between 2 sharp dips. (If you invert the image, that's what it looks like: hint) Chances are, some guys arbitrarily passed 'age 30', and some others happened to pass 'age 25'. Especially in a small (9-team) league, this is an issue.

By: Dave Mon, 20 Jul 2009 02:50:25 +0000 I suspect Team Expansion in the 1990s allowed Players like Jerome Kersey and Cliff Robinson to have above average length careers. (I wonder if this also contributed to the 84/85 draft blip we have observed.) Expansion together with the sorts of money players could now earn has meant they stay in the league (while they can) - as opposed to past generations where many a player retired to a better paying / more reliable income proposition.

Neil, You have charted the Win Share distribution broken up by age, but you have not indicated the relative proportions of people populating the different categories - I am not sure it is valid to seperate the 40 yr olds off and not the under 20s - especially since the latter group has probably always been larger...

By: Greg Thomas, Ph.D. Sat, 18 Jul 2009 12:46:11 +0000 Neil,

Another great article! I have done some work with estimating win shares for players before 1973-74 and believe it can be done with a large amount of accuracy. What formula or methodology did you use for estimating the win shares of Bill Russell?

By: merl Sat, 18 Jul 2009 02:54:03 +0000 I wonder what the correlation was to players hanging round longer and the spike in salaries that occurred during the nineties? Surely a bunch of quality guys stayed simply to cash in on the big paychecks that they didn't get in the 80s

By: mrparker Thu, 16 Jul 2009 16:36:42 +0000 The late 90s uptick could have alot to do with that being the only era measured where underdeveloped 19 year olds were playing significant minutes.

By: Jason J Thu, 16 Jul 2009 16:14:16 +0000 What effect did Bird's back injury and Magic's retirement due to HIV have on that 35-39 range in '93-94? Add those two back in and maybe get an extra year out of McHale and Worthy in the process, and the WS might bounce back up.

By: Mike G Thu, 16 Jul 2009 13:50:17 +0000 Maybe it's even better with grid lines?

On the 'shorter players' chart:
Somewhere around 1998, 'old' guys (>30) approach 50% of all WS. Normally the 'prime age' (25-29) guys comprise about 50%, but at this time they're pinched down to maybe 25%.

In the late '80s, there may be more WS in the >40 group than in the 35-39 range, which is down to nearly nothing. This recurs around '93-94.

Very nice.

By: Mike G Thu, 16 Jul 2009 13:34:46 +0000 Wow!
This is so awesome I am at a loss for words (almost).

Turn it upside down, and the old guys are the 'bedrock' of the league; the youngsters are the sky; they just fill in any void of experienced players. It may make more sense that way.

What about the ABA? By snatching up kids from college (that the NBA wouldn't touch), significant younger talent would appear.

Huge tradeoff of older/younger guys right around the introduction of shot clock ('53 to 54).

The late-90s spike of older players' Win Shares might be exaggerated by whatever coincidence placed many older players on the best teams for a few years. You could do this by % of minutes played, but that might have the opposite effect. % of points and % of rebounds would be great.