Free Agent Wings

I have delayed posting anything about our impending (hopefully) wing signing because I keep assuming the Wolves will make the post irrelevant shortly after. Since they are determined to take their sweet time, I finally decided to just throw up a few charts I have been using to help understand the options.

The following is a list of possible FA targets including our starting wings from last season for comparison. I listed the PA100 differential score and RAPM differential score for each player. I also took the average of these two scores to give players a composite rating. RAPM is overly conservative and thus gives smaller effect sizes than reality, PA100 doesn't account for diminish returns and thus gives larger effect sizes than reality. To account for this difference in effect sizes I took the average standard deviation to build the composite score.

(PA.diff numbers are the average of the past two seasons, RAPM is informed by prior seasons systematically. Kirilenko's numbers are from 2010/2011 because he played in Russia last season)


Four FA targets and one Wolf were deemed terrible across the two metrics ( > 1 SD below the group). Dominic Mcguire, Terrence Williams, Carlos Delfino, Mickael Pietrus, and (of course) Wesley Johnson. I will drop the four FAs from the rest of this post... unfortunately we are stuck with Wes, so I will leave him in for sake of comparison.

Especially with Shved signing and a knee-less Brandon Roy likely joining, I think defense is the key attribute we should be looking to address with our next FA move. Here is how the players stack up defensively.


This is actually a pretty solid group defensively. Brewer is the standout defensive star, but several other FAs look to be very solid defenders. Given that our 2012 wing corp rank last and third last on this list, anything will be a healthy improvement on the defensive front.

Looking at offense, I wanted to more than simply rank players. I also wanted to try to describe their style of play to help identify how they will fit into the system. 3val is simply 3pt attempts per 40 times the player's percentage above average. I didn't allow for negative 3val, so all players who shot 3s below the NBA mean last season are given a 0. ATTACK is point at the rim + free throws made per 40. This measure gets at how aggressive the player is attacking the rim. ast+ is simply 3pt adjusted assists per 40. %unast is the percentage of field goals in which a player is not assisted. This gets at how ball dominant a player is, and how well he generates (or at least attempts to generate) offense.


Here is a handy little chart of where players rank in these measures ordered by composite offensive rating:


Subtracting the players who have signed, here is one final look at the differential scores for available players and how they stack up against our 2012 wing duo:


Quick thoughts:

Take Kirilenko's numbers with a grain of salt. He is over 30, and 2 years removed from the numbers reported here. I still think he is the best available target, but the difference may not be this large.

McGrady looks great, but his age is also concerning. He may fall apart at any moment. I would still love to see him here on a 1-year contract. He deserves it.

I like that Brewer has one legitimately elite skill (defense). I would really like to have a guy who can shut down the opposition's best wing and hopefully "do no evil" on offense.

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