Knowing tat Canis Hoopus is big on the stats as a form of player evaluation, and also being a mathematics & economics major myself, I wanted to share this article with everyone that I found on Basketball Prospectus:
Ultimately, the discussion seems to center largely on the two questions that were the focal point of my columns five years ago:
- Can we boil a basketball player's value down to a single number?
- What better describes a player's value: his individual statistics or plus-minus data describing his impact on the team?
If you would have told me five years ago that neither question would yet be answered to anyone's satisfaction, I would have been disappointed and somewhat surprised. What happened? Simmons notes one key explanation in his column: Teams got interested in this stuff. Five years ago, no NBA team employed an analyst on a full-time basis. Oliver was attempting to get just such a position, a process that culminated in his hiring by the Seattle SuperSonics that fall. While full-time statistical analysts remain the exception rather than the rule, at least nine teams use at least one person, with Morey's Rockets employing a full roster.
It is a quick read, and anyone with an inkling of interest in the advanced metrics (such as adjusted efficiency, PER, WARP, etc...) should take a peak. I have long been a fan of stat junkies like Ken Pomeroy and Kevin Pelton, and it is amazing to me that relatively few people are able to see the usefulness of these methods in evaluating players beyond basic scouting. Anyways, if you're not familiar with APBRmetrics, you can read about it on Wikipedia here.