FanPost

Evaluating the Shooters of the 2016 NBA Draft

Marco Garcia-USA TODAY Sports

Hello all,

Long-time lurker of Canis, and for my first post I wanted to write a bit about projecting the three point shooting capabilities of the draft prospects in this summer's NBA draft. I stumbled across Andrew Johnson of Nylon Calculus' three point shooting model from the previous two drafts on Twitter this afternoon, and due to having some free time after work, I decided I would use his model to project three point shooting percentages of the players in this draft.

If you'd like to read about how he created his model, the link is here. Key points:

  • Andrew used two different models. The first explained about 30% of the variation in NBA three-point shooting (not great), while the second had an R-squared of 0.63 (pretty good). I computed both models, and also included an average of the two. This post from last year explains the second model. Full disclosure: I might not have the exact formula (the article linked above mentioned an age component I couldn't find, though he did list an equation on the post, so I just used the equation in the post)
  • The sample size is the top 78 prospects in the Draft Express database (this link here). I used their per 40 pace adjusted statistics.

On to the model!

I used the free throw %, three point makes and attempts per 40, and three point % of the potential draft picks. Andrew does a good job in the articles listed above of why those variables are important. The results are below, in descending order based on the players' projected three point percentage based on the average of the two models:

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Name FT% 3PtA 3PT% Model 1 Model 2 Average
Buddy Hield 88.000% 9.5 45.700% 40.479% 40.979% 40.73%
Denzel Valentine 85.300% 9.4 44.400% 39.876% 40.446% 40.16%
Kyle Wiltjer 85.400% 7 43.800% 38.714% 38.575% 38.64%
Malcolm Brogdon 89.700% 6.8 39.100% 38.408% 38.701% 38.55%
Jamal Murray 78.300% 8.8 40.800% 38.124% 38.531% 38.33%
Yogi Ferrell 82.900% 6.2 42.000% 37.741% 37.599% 37.67%
Damion Lee 84.300% 7.4 34.100% 37.171% 37.637% 37.40%
Caris LeVert 78.800% 5.8 45.000% 37.526% 37.030% 37.28%
Jarrod Uthoff 81.300% 6.6 38.200% 37.096% 37.220% 37.16%
Jake Layman 84.600% 5.3 39.900% 37.212% 37.050% 37.13%
Kay Felder 84.800% 6.1 35.500% 36.880% 37.235% 37.06%
Sheldon McClellan 83.800% 5 40.600% 37.089% 36.782% 36.94%
Isaiah Whitehead 76.000% 7.9 36.500% 36.725% 37.112% 36.92%
Melo Trimble 86.700% 6.4 31.100% 36.541% 37.185% 36.86%
Marcus Paige 77.400% 7.6 35.600% 36.622% 36.993% 36.81%
Malik Beasley 81.300% 5.4 38.700% 36.639% 36.592% 36.62%
Fred VanVleet 81.700% 5.2 38.100% 36.503% 36.490% 36.50%
Ron Baker 78.400% 6.9 34.800% 36.306% 36.660% 36.48%
Tyler Ulis 85.600% 5 34.400% 36.309% 36.561% 36.43%
Daniel Hamilton 86.000% 5 33.100% 36.148% 36.616% 36.38%
Georges Niang 80.700% 4.7 39.200% 36.330% 36.037% 36.18%
Malik Newman 68.700% 7.9 38.200% 36.067% 36.255% 36.16%
Jaron Blossomgame 78.200% 4.1 44.100% 36.539% 35.690% 36.11%
Anthony Barber 86.500% 3.7 36.100% 36.118% 36.057% 36.09%
Demetrius Jackson 81.300% 5.5 33.100% 35.771% 36.120% 35.95%
Malachi Richardson 72.000% 7.4 35.300% 35.793% 36.085% 35.94%
Taurean Prince 76.900% 5.9 36.100% 35.877% 35.981% 35.93%
Patrick McCaw 76.900% 6.1 35.200% 35.820% 35.981% 35.90%
Dorian Finney-Smith 73.300% 6.6 36.800% 35.844% 35.952% 35.90%
Danuel House 71.500% 8.7 30.900% 35.595% 36.173% 35.88%
Wade Baldwin 79.900% 4 40.600% 36.141% 35.612% 35.88%
Brandon Ingram 68.200% 6.3 41.000% 35.741% 35.558% 35.65%
Dillon Brooks 80.800% 4.6 33.800% 35.417% 35.737% 35.58%
Michael Gbinije 66.300% 7 39.100% 35.503% 35.451% 35.48%
Benjamin Bentil 78.200% 5.2 32.900% 35.207% 35.533% 35.37%
Josh Hart 75.200% 5 35.700% 35.190% 35.273% 35.23%
Perry Ellis 79.500% 2.2 43.800% 35.803% 34.614% 35.21%
Isaiah Cousins 67.000% 4.9 41.100% 34.975% 34.448% 34.71%
Alex Caruso 78.500% 2.8 36.800% 34.804% 34.475% 34.64%
Wayne Selden 61.700% 6.5 38.300% 34.559% 34.498% 34.53%
Isaiah Taylor 81.100% 2.5 30.600% 33.991% 34.522% 34.26%
Kris Dunn 69.500% 4.1 37.200% 34.301% 34.010% 34.16%
A.J. Hammons 70.900% 0.5 54.500% 35.683% 32.319% 34.00%
Nigel Hayes 73.600% 4.5 29.300% 33.717% 34.265% 33.99%
Robert Carter 74.000% 3.4 33.300% 33.927% 34.007% 33.97%
Elgin Cook 77.900% 2.1 33.900% 33.940% 33.920% 33.93%
Malik Pope 64.900% 5.1 36.200% 33.998% 33.842% 33.92%
Tim Quarterman 63.200% 5.5 34.300% 33.650% 33.763% 33.71%
Henry Ellenson 74.900% 3.5 28.800% 33.353% 33.975% 33.66%
Dedric Lawson 70.900% 2.8 35.000% 33.537% 33.419% 33.48%
Troy Williams 69.100% 3.3 34.700% 33.483% 33.326% 33.40%
Domantas Sabonis 76.800% 0.5 35.700% 33.374% 32.982% 33.18%
Caleb Swanigan 71.300% 3.3 29.200% 32.868% 33.475% 33.17%
Marquese Chriss 68.500% 2.5 35.000% 33.096% 32.929% 33.01%
Justin Jackson 66.700% 4.1 29.200% 32.638% 33.150% 32.89%
Jaylen Brown 65.400% 4.4 29.400% 32.639% 33.126% 32.88%
Joel Bolomboy 68.800% 2.1 34.000% 32.791% 32.656% 32.72%
Dejounte Murray 66.300% 3.6 28.800% 32.297% 32.780% 32.54%
Tyrone Wallace 64.900% 3.7 29.800% 32.326% 32.743% 32.53%
James Webb III 68.400% 4.4 22.500% 31.898% 33.072% 32.49%
DeAndre Bembry 65.700% 3.7 26.600% 31.907% 32.697% 32.30%
Alex Poythress 70.600% 1.3 30.400% 32.076% 32.435% 32.26%
Gary Payton II 64.700% 2.6 31.900% 32.149% 32.244% 32.20%
Shawn Long 67.400% 2.3 26.700% 31.512% 32.304% 31.91%
Ben Simmons 67.000% 0.1 33.300% 31.549% 31.306% 31.43%
Pascal Siakam 68.600% 0.5 20.000% 29.765% 31.686% 30.73%
Stephen Zimmerman 63.600% 0.9 25.000% 30.120% 31.148% 30.63%
Brice Johnson 78.300% 0 0.000% 27.522% 32.876% 30.20%
Derrick Jones 60.200% 2.3 18.900% 29.319% 30.990% 30.15%
Diamond Stone 75.000% 0 0.000% 27.100% 32.418% 29.76%
Jakob Poeltl 69.400% 0 0.000% 26.383% 31.640% 29.01%
Skal Labissiere 66.100% 0.1 0.000% 26.006% 31.181% 28.59%
Zach Auguste 62.800% 0 0.000% 25.538% 30.723% 28.13%
Deyonta Davis 60.500% 0 0.000% 25.244% 30.403% 27.82%
Chinanu Onuaku 58.900% 0.1 0.000% 25.084% 30.181% 27.63%
Isaiah Briscoe 46.000% 1.4 13.500% 26.217% 28.704% 27.46%
Damian Jones 53.600% 0.1 0.000% 24.406% 29.445% 26.93%
Prince Ibeh 41.800% 0 0.000% 22.850% 27.806% 25.33%

Key Takeaways:

  • Buddy at the top is a good sign (as it shows Andrew's model likely is somewhat predictive). Both him and Denzel project to be very good shooters.
  • Brogdon has gotten some love at the combine, and the numbers suggest his shooting may translate.
  • Murray's by far the youngest prospect near the top. Perhaps this is why Andrew mentioned an age component in his model without including it in the equation on the post.
  • Ingram only projects to be middle of the class, likely due to his poor free throw percentage. Simmons and Jaylon Brown don't project well either, unsurprisingly.
Overall, this was a fairly easy exercise, and I hope to produce some more models and/or graphics before the draft. If you found this helpful or have suggestions/concerns, or if I screwed something up (which is likely, this was the first post I made using R and converting it back to Excel might have screwed some things up), let me know.