“Three things cannot be long hidden: the sun, the moon, and the truth.” -Buddha
There are some beats I like to hit come playoff time. The first of course is my playoff picks. The second is snazzy visuals to capture who the best players are as we go along and help push the narrative that I believe more closely aligns to the actual truth of the matter at hand.
We can update those visuals now:
The final and most important step is the tracking of any and all relevant stats and using them to work out all the Wins Produced numbers for the playoffs which then allow me to do all my analysis and my picks.
Let’s get to those boxscores and recaps right?
A few quick notes before we go:
- We are using New Wins Produced numbers. I am manually compiling them for the playoffs and NBA Geek has compiled them for the season. There will be some drift as we go along in the numbers (don’t worry it’s a function of the averages moving) but it’s good enough for horseshoes,hand grenades and tactical nuclear weapons.
- The Boxscore contains:
- Basic information: Player , Team, Game ID (Who,what and when)
- Classic Stats:Points ,Shots, Offensive Rebounds, Defensive Rebounds,Steals,Blocks, Assists (Because the classics are classics for a reason).
- Simple spins on classics: % of Team Minutes (player minutes as % of total minutes available), Position (average player position)
- Posession and Play stats:Offensive Plays : Field Goal attempts + .434 Free Throw Attempts + Turnovers, Usage of Offensive Plays : % of Offensive plays used by player when in the game
- All the classic Offensive Efficiency stats (and some slightly modded ones):Effective Field Goal %=(FG + 0.5 * 3P) / FGA,True Shooting %=Pts / (2 * (FGA + 0.44 * FTA), Points per Shot = Pts/FGA, Points per Offensive Play= Pts/Offensive Plays
- Do it Yourself Offensive Point Margin Stats:Offensive Point Margin: this is the marginal value created by the player per offensive play spent. The calculation is: OPM = (Points per Play for Player- Avg Points per play for Player for League)*Offensive Plays for Player.Defensive Point Margin: this is the marginal value surrendered by the player per offensive play spent. The calculation is:DPM = (Points per Play for Opponent- Avg Points per play for Player for League)*Offensive Plays for Opponent. I’m doing this one by position averages per game.Combined Margin: this is just OPM-DPM
- Rebounding Rates: % of Rebounds on Offense, % of Rebounds on Defense.
- Points over Par. This is our points version of Wins Produced that tell you the direct effect of a player’s production on the games point margin. This is the key number boys and girls. In the interest of keeping it to each series and games I am using Point over PAr in comparison to the players on the court for each game. What this means is that each player will not be judged against the average playoff production for their position but rather their opponents. This guarantees that on a game level Points over Par maps to actual point margin.
- I’ve classified performances on a sliding scale:
- Hall of Famer: 12.5 POP48 and Above. Submit tape of performance to Hall of Fame voters
- Superstar: 5 to 12.5 POP48. Lebron on a regular night.
- Star: 2.5 to 5 POP48. A good night
- Starter: 0 to 2.5 POP48. Positive contributions to the outcome.
- Bench: -2.5 to 0 POP48. Not worthy of a starting role.
- Scrub: -5 to -2.5 POP48. Play only in case of emergency.
- Traitor: less than -5 POP48. You’re wearing the wrong uniform.
Now for the recaps.
I had to rewrite my playoff model to include the full win probability equation as opposed to the simplification to avoid having Milwaukee have negative odds to win this series. I don’t know that I should have bothered.
Chis Andersen has to be easily the best in-season pickup of a free agent I can remember. He’s been murderously effective when paired with Lebron. If coach Spo starts playing a lineup of Wade, Ray, Shane, Lebron and Birdman it’s just over. Chris is the MVP for this series so far with Ray , Cole and Lebron getting honorable mention.
Meanwhile, I’ve been having amusing discussions with Bucks fans as to whether or not their team could beat a team of 4 Lebrons (no, they’d get killed), 3 Lebrons (I think it goes seven and I still have Lebron, ever see Varsity kids play 7th graders?) or who would win more basketball games out of a hundred the Bucks versus the Heat or the Packers versus the Bucks (the Bucks but it’s close). Dunleavy is the lone bright spot for the Bucks.
We have Redick, SANDERS, Ilyasova, Luc and of course Jennings submitting traitorous performances for the Bucks. Not good times.
Initial Prediction: Miami in 4
MVP so Far: Birdman!
Updated Prediction:You’re kidding, right?
You know what it means when Jeff Green is the only guy in your roster that shows up for a playoff series? It means the Celtics have absolutely no shot at this. Garnett and Pierce have been MIA. Have I mention that I despise Jordan Crawford. The Celts will win a game here but only on muscle memory, the refs and the energy of the Garden crowd.
The Knicks are way more interesting. Kidd is being Kidd in the playoffs which is good. Tyson looks banged up and is inconsistent which is not good. Kenyon is a surprise that they’ll need if Tyson is not healthy. Melo as always has been a mixed bag. However he’s been a positive contributor. If that continues and Tyson is tyson then this team is a real contender. If Bad Melo comes to town? The Knicks have no shot.
Initial Prediction: New York in 5
MVP so Far: Jason Kidd (He-Whose-Age-Must-Not-Be-Mentioned)
Updated Prediction: League won’t let this go 4. Five still sounds good.
I took a really nice nap during game 1 of this series. I watched some highlights of Game 2. I then hate watched these on dvr. I’ll keep it brief.
Paul George has been a monster in this series. So much so that he’s been the round 1 mvp so far. Horford is wasted on the Hawks.
Initial Prediction: Pacers in 5
MVP so Far: Paul George
Updated Prediction: It’ll get to 5 unless Hawks decide to lie down (a possibility)
Remember after game 1 how it look like the Nets had the Bulls totally outmatched? How quickly everything changes.
In Game 1, the Nets benefited from fabulous performances from Deron, CJ and Gerald Wallace and complete catastrophes from Deng and Hinrich. Deng and Hinrich have completely turned that around. Throw in a great one-legged game 2 by Noah and great game threes by Boozer and Nate and the Bulls hold a 2-1 lead.
Initial Prediction: Bulls in 6
MVP so Far: Ignore game 1 and it’s Loul Deng
Updated Prediction: Bulls in 6. Bring on the Derrick Rose controversy.
To be continued with the West of course.