Tuesday, April 8, 2014

USING STANDARDIZED REAL PLUS MINUS (RPM) TO ANALYZE TWO-WAY AND ONE-WAY PLAYERS

So we've used Stephen Ilardi's published RPM stats on ESPN, adjusted by position (to create a more even distribution among ranks) to get a consolidate ranking of top offensive and defensive players. These players may not have the stats, but when they step on the court, they spatially warp the floor in ways that prove beneficial to their team. The top players are in the top 100 for offense, defense, or both categories (in the case of two way). It is out of 430 total NBA players. Years remaining includes this year as well.

Without further ado...

Monday, January 27, 2014

INTERNATIONAL BASKETBALL TEAM RANKINGS

United States is obviously #1, but what other countries are representing:

Listed after Player Name: (Height Weight Position--Age)

2) SPAIN

Ricky Rubio (6'4" 185 PG--23)
Jose Calderon (6'3" 211 PG--32)
Sergio Rodriguez (6'3" 176 PG--27)
Rudy Fernandez (6'6" 185 SG--28)
Juan Carlos Navarro (6'4" 200 SG--33)
Alejandro Abrines (6'6" 200 SG/SF--21)
Daniel Diez (6'8" 216 SF--21)
Serge Ibaka (6'10" 245 PF/C--24)
Nikola Mirotic* (6'10" 236 PF--22)
Victor Claver (6'9" 224 PF--25)
Marc Gasol (7'1" 265 C--28)
Pau Gasol (7'0" 250 C--33)

This is a well constructed team with key youth (Rubio, Ibaka) and many veterans (Gasol brothers, Calderon, Navarro) with a lot of playmaking and shooting on the side. Look for next generation Nikola Mirotic, who has an asterisk because he might play for either Montengro or Spain. There are a few incubator prospects with Abrines and and Diez who may get some run in some of the blowouts.

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3) FRANCE

Tony Parker (6'2" 185 PG--31)
Nando De Colo (6'5" 200 PG/SG--26)
Evan Fournier (6'6" 200 SG--21)
Mickael Pietrus (6'6" 215 SG--31)
Nicolas Batum (6'8" 200 SF--25)
Livio Jean Charles (6'9" 217 SF--21)
Boris Diaw (6'8" 250 PF--31)
Kevin Seraphin (6'10" 278 PF--24)
Ronny Turiaf (6'10" 241 PF/C--31)
Joakim Noah (6'11" 232 C--28)
Ian Mahinmi (6'11" 230 C--27)
Alexis Ajinca (7'2" 248 C--25)

France has always fielded deep teams in the past, and this is no exception, with a bunch of NBA talent and several clear leaders (Parker, Batum, Noah). There is a lot of depth and ballhandling here. Mix of young players and veteran leaders. They should go far. Rodrigue Beaubois, Johan Petro, and Rudy Gobert are some key omissions, as well as future NBA prospects like Leo Westermann, Boris Dallo, Mam Jaiteh,  and possibly Damien Inglis.
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4) BRAZIL

Marcelo Huertas (6'3" 205 PG--30)
Scott Machado (6'1" 205 PG--23)
Raul Neto (6'1" PG--21)
Leandro Barbosa (6'3" 194 SG--31)
Alex Garcia (6'4" 225 SG--33)
Marcus Vinicius (6'10" 225 SF--29)
Nene (6'11" 250 PF/C--31)
Anderson Varejao (6'11" 267 PF--31)
Vitor Faverani (6'11" 260 PF/C--25)
Tiago Splitter (6'11" 245 C--29)
Lucas Noguiera (7'0" 220 C--21)
Fab Melo (7'0" 255 C--23)

Brazil is knee-deep in bigs, both power forwards and centers, and have three veterans (Varejao, Nene, Splitter) who are the clear leaders of the team and several incubating prospects (Machado, Neto, and especially Noguiera). Their guards are noticeably weaker but Huertas, Barbosa and Garcia have been around and Barbosa, even with several lost steps, can bring needed scoring punch. This is a deep team that should definitely be a contender. A key omission is Cristiano Felicio, a 21 year old PF prospect.

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5) CANADA

Tyler Ennis (6'2" 180 PG--19)
Cory Joseph (6'3" 185 PG--22)
Olivier Hanlan (6'4" 188 PG/SG--20)
Nik Stauskas (6'6" 205 SG--20)
Andrew Wiggins (6'8" 197 SF--18)
Tristan Thompson (6'9" 238 PF--22)
Anthony Bennett (6'8" 259 PF--20)
Andrew Nicholson (6'9" 250 PF--24)
Dwight Powell (6'10" 212 PF--22)
Kelly Olynyk (7'0" 238 C--22)
Robert Sacre (7'0" 260 C--24)
Samuel Dalembert (6'11" 250 C--32)

This is a deep team with a lot of talented youth--most of their players are in their late teens to early 20s, and the centerpiece is Andrew Wiggins. But don't underestimate Tristan Thompson, Tyler Ennis, and Kelly Olynyk. Dalembert brings the sorely needed veteran leadership, although perhaps Dwight Powell will get replaced by a proven leading guard like Andy Rautins. The assumption is that Steve Nash can't play, and Joel Anthony is omitted due to his rapidly decaying game. This team might just be too green as of yet.
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6) AUSTRALIA

Dante Exum (6'6" 188 PG/SG--18)
Patty Mills (6'0" PG--25)
Matthew Dellavedova (6'3" PG--22)
Ryan Broekhoff (6'7"  SG/SF--22)
Brad Newley (6'7" SG/SF--28)
Joe Ingles (6'8" SF--25)
Ben Simmons (6'8" SF--17)
David Andersen (6'11" PF/C--33)
Nathan Jawai (6'10" PF--27)
Andrew Bogut (7'0" C--29)
Aron Baynes (6'10" C--27)
Luke Nevill (7'2" C--27)

If only they had Kyrie. Just kidding. Team Aussie has rapidly improved from even about a decade ago when they were considered laughingstocks. With the addition of lead guard Exum to combine with Bogut, that's lethal, and Patty Mills and Aron Baynes are already viable NBA players under the San Antonio system, along with seasoned NBA veteran David Andersen and another NBA type in Dellavdeova. Newley and Ingles, along with Jawai were also considered NBA prospects. This team from top to bottom is competent, but we'll see if they can be a major sleeper.

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7) RUSSIA

Alexey Shved (6'6" 187 PG/SG--25)
Anton Ponkrashov (6'7" PG/SG--27)
Sergey Karasev (6'7" 196 SG--20)
Dmitry Kulagin (6'6" 196 SG--21)
Vitaly Fridzon (6'5" SG--27)
Andrei Kirilenko (6'9" 235 SF/PF--32)
Sergei Monia (6'8" 218 SF--30)
Yaroslav Korolev (6'10" 245 PF--26)
Viktor Khryapa (6'9" 235 PF--31)
Timofey Mozgov (7'1" 250 C--27)
Sasha Kaun (6'11" 256 C--28)
Artem Klimenko (7'1" 228 C--20)

Russia is a team that is ran by a bunch of length--Kirilenko, an NBA mainstay, is the clear leader in this, but NBA busts like Yaroslava Korolev, Viktor Khryapa and Sergei Monia all have ample length and defensive reputations as well. Timofey Mozgov, Kirilenko and Shved are the clear leaders of this team. The team is ran by two tall PGs in Shved and Ponkrashov, and there's enough talent to be a major sleeper here.
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8) LITHUANIA

Mantas Kalnietis (6'5" 205 PG--27)
Tomas Dimsa (6'4" 185 SG--20)
Reinaldas Seibutis (6'6" SG--28)
Martynas Pocius (6'5" SG--27)
Linas Kleiza (6'8" 234 SF--29)
Marius Grigonis (6'6" 195 SF--19)
Donatas Motiejunas (7'0" 222 PF--23)
Kristof Lavrinovic (6'11" PF--33)
Jonas Valanciunas (7'0" 240 C--21)
Darjus Lavrinovic (6'11" C--33)
Robertas Javtokas (6'11" C--33)
Martynas Andriuskevicius (7'2" 240--27)

Without Jasikevicius and Songaila, both of whom are likely too old to compete here, there's a certain lack of leadership lost, especially since their very old players have zero NBA experience. Still, they have very viable young NBA players, like Motiejunas and Valanciunas, and older leadership and NBA viability in Kleiza, so this is a decent team. Kalnietis is an underrated PG who has never made it to the NBA, and they have special incubator players coming up in Dimsa and Grigonis.  They have some draft washouts like Seibutis and Andriuskevicius, as well. It's a bit lacking in point guards, but there's enough talent here.

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9) GREECE

Vassilis Spanoulis (6'4" PG--31)
Dimitirs Diamantidis* (6'5" 220 PG/SG--33)
Nick Calathes (6'6" 213 PG/SG--24)
Nikolaos Zisis (6'6" 215 SG--30)
Giannis Antetokoumpo (6'10" 205 SF--19)
Kostas Papanikalaou (6'9" SF--23)
Thanassis Antetokoumpo (6'7" 200 SF--20)
Antonis Fotsis (6'10" PF--32)
Linos Chrysikopoulos (6'10" 218 PF--21)
Giorgos Printezis (6'9" PF--28)
Kosta Koufos (7'0" 265 C--24)
Ioannis Bourousis (7'0" C--29)

Greece actually has major sleeper potential. In the past, they had major players who had NBA talent (Diamantidis, Theodoros Papaloukas, Spanoulis) who never came over stateside, and had major success. Now, Paps and Diamantidis have retired, although with the resurgence of Greek talent I might assume that Diamantidis could come back, since he's still an active player but just has supposedly retired from the national team. Spanoulis and Fotsis are the heart and soul of the team, but Calathes, Giannis Antetokounmpo and Koufos bring in the young certifiable NBA talent across all positions. They also have a slew of NBA former draft prospects like Zisis, Chriskopoulis, Papanikalaou, Printezis, and Bourousis, as well as the older Antetokounmpo. This team could make noise with clear leaders and fairly good balance, both positionally and young and old.

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10) TURKEY

Dogus Balbay (6'1" 180 PG--24)
Ender Arslan (6'3" PG--30)
Kenan Sipahi (6'4" 180 PG--18)
Sinan Guler (6'4" SG--29)
Emir Preldzic (6'9" 220 SF--26)
Serhat Citin (6'6" SF--27)
Hedo Turkoglu (6'10" 220 SF--34)
Ersan Ilyasova (6'10" 235 PF--26)
Kerem Gonlum (6'10" PF--35)
Omer Asik (7'0" 255 C--27)
Enes Kanter (6'11" 248 C--21)
Semih Erden (7'0" 240 C--27)

Turkey is a very big man loaded team, with four 6'10" and above players (Turkoglu, Ilyasova, Kanter and Asik) leading the ropes. Also, really watch out for young Turkish phenom Kenan Sipahi, who can give Turkey a new generation of ballhandler. Other than that, there's really not much to be impressed, but former Texas PG Dogs Balbay is good at pressuring the ball on defense, and Emir Preldzic was a draft prospect in prior years.

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11) GERMANY

Dennis Schroeder (6'1" 168 PG--20)
Per Gunther (6'0" PG--25)
Paul Zippser (6'6" 195 SG--19)
Lucca Staiger (6'5" SG--25)
Robin Benzing (6'10" 210 SF--24)
Elias Harris (6'8" 239 SF--24)
Dirk Nowitzki (7'0" 245 PF--35)
Tim Ohlbrecht (6'11" 255 PF/C--25)
Jan Jagla (7'0" 231 PF--32)
Chris Kaman (7'0" 265 C--31)
Tibor Pleiss (7'1" 269 C--24)
Philipp Neumann (6'11" 240 C--21)

Germany has a ton of big men, including those who can shoot, but has been awful at producing any sort of guards, but especially wings. Nowitzki is the clear leader, with Kaman, Ohlbrecht and Schroeder on the sides, the latter two adding the young blood, and a few NBA draft washouts like Benzing, Harris, and Pleiss. This is an imbalanced team that will only go as far as Nowitzki takes them.
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12) SERBIA

Milos Teodosic (6'5" PG--26)
Nemanja Nedovic (6'3" 192 PG/SG--22)
Vasilje Micic (6'5" 203 PG--20)
Milenko Tepic (6'8" SG/SF--26)
Bojan Bogdanovic (6'6" 205 SG--21)
Nemanja Bjelica (6'10" SF/PF--25)
Milan Macvan (6'9" PF--23)
Zoran Erceg (6'11" PF--28)
Nenad Krstic (7'0" 267 C--30)
Miroslav Raduljica (7'0" C--25)
Nikola Milutinov (6'11" 220 C--19)
Dejan Musli (7'0" C--22)

Serbia has a very interesting team completely laden with prior NBA prospects who for whatever reason has not found success in the NBA but found success in the Euroleague, but it also has many young next generation prospects coming up like Micic, Bogdanovic, and Milutinov. There might be a lack of wing play here but there are a ton of bigs here. Teodosic, Nedovic, and Krstic are the likely leaders here, and Raduljica has done well with the Bucks. It's hard to make noise with no current NBA players playing heavy minutes, but we'll see. Too bad they can't combine with Montenegro and add Nikola Pekovic and Vucevic.
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13) ITALY

Travis Diener (6'1" PG--31)
Daniel Hackett (6'6" PG--25)
Andrea Cinciarini (6'4" PG--27)
Marco Belinelli (6'5" 195 SG--27)
Pietro Aradori (6'4" SG--24)
Alessandro Gentile (6'6" 200 SF--22)
Danilo Gallinari (6'10" 225 SF/PF--25)
Luigi Datome (6'8" 215 SF/PF--26)
Stefano Mancinelli (6'8" PF--26)
Nicolo Melli (6'9" PF--22)
Andrea Bargnani (7'0" 250 C--28)
Marco Cusin (6'11" C--26)

Not exactly a deep team, as it's led by Gallinari, Bellinelli and Bargnani at each of the SG, SF and C positions, but there is a distinct lack of a playmaking PG and proper depth as well.
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Others:

14) Montenegro has the combination of Nikola Pekovic and Nikola Vucevic, with a few NBA draft prospects like Bojan Dubljevic and Vladimir Dasic, but otherwise lack the talent, particularly in non-center positions.

15) Croatia has several NBA prospects of interest: Dario Saric and Mario Hezonja, but otherwise their best players are NBA draft washouts like Roko Ukic and Ante Tomic.

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

2013 DRAFT PLAYER CAPSULES

Allen Crabbe
--Inclined spot-up jumpshooting SG who limits turnovers. Just a decent use of the offensive floor. Just an OK passer for position.
--Doesn't penetrate. Vastly improving mid-range game, but just appears to be decent based on body of work. On the other hand, three point shooting is heading in the opposite direction; has shown real ability to hit threes off the dribble in his first two years (39%, 41%) but has struggled with more spot-up attempts this season, but should still be a good shooter, especially corroborated with very good free throw percentages. Good shooter who likely needs to find consistency with all forms of his jumper.
--Pretty good defender, but very subpar in defensive playmaking. Good rebounder for size. OK frame. Might lack athleticism between the lack of penetration and defensive playmaking, but could find a 3's/D niche if he could simplify his college scoring role into one that mostly involves three point shooting.

Ben McLemore
--Spot-up scorer with a great use of the offensive floor. Excellent finisher at the rim off spoon feeds, but given frequency of at rims not that impressive in drawing fouls. Excellent spot-up three point shooter, and corroborated by excellent free throw shooting, even though just decent mid-range game. OK passer who limits turnovers.
--Very good defender. Good rebounder. Just a decent build. Just an OK defensive playmaker who can block shots but is really awful in racking up steals.
--Overall, can finish and shoot from deep, but lacks the self-creation, passing and ability to draw fouls to take it up another level. More of a strong than athletic type, as rebounding and attacking are more strength and drawing fouls and making defensive plays are more athletic. Somewhat reminds of Jason Richardson in overall style of game.

James Ennis
--Decent scoring small forward with  an excellent use of the offensive floor and a desire for isolations far more than the typical SF (only 45.59% of his shots are assisted). Decent passer for position, but turnover prone.
--The isolation role does not agree with him, as he's a far better shooter off spot-ups (43% 2's, 37% 3's) then when he is taking them off the dribble (31% 2's, 33% 3's this season). Probably a decent shooter overall, but he does have a good foundation given good free throw shooting. Excellent finisher around the rim who is better off set ups but can also improvise a little, and draws fouls.
--Decent defender. Very good defensive playmaker who pads steals and blocks, and good rebounder for size. Overall, has swiss-knife ability with few weaknesses, as he's a decent spot-up shooter, passer, and defender, and has good athleticism with the finishing, rebounding and defensive playmaking. He currently packs more athletic traits than skill-based traits, but for an athlete he has a wide array of skills with potential for growth. Can be a really good role player type if harnessed correctly.

Jeff Withey
--Elite defender who might have been the second best defensive player in college last season. Excellent rebounder. Elite defensive playmaker with an elite rate of shotbocking. Very good frame for a NBA center. Has drastically cut down his fouls. Really underweight though.
--Middling scorer who relies majorly on set-up shots. Decent to good finisher with a major knack for drawing fouls. Appears to have a good spot-up mid-ranger (shot 40% this past season, and 55% his second year) and has utilized that shot more with each passing season. Grain of salt given that while he is an improved free throw shooter, it is still subpar overall. Touches the ball to score, not a passer.
--Should be able to rely on his defense majorly in the NBA, and what might be a good mid-range shot and some finishing.

Kentavious Caldwell-Pope
--Three-point inclined jumpshooting scorer who uses a mix of spot-ups and isolations. Not a passer, but really limits turnovers, not surprising given jumpshooting game.
--Infrequently takes shots around the rim. Appears to be one of those shooters who shoots better off the dribble, as opposed to spotting up. Has shown ability to hit pull-ups (45% last year) and threes off the dribble (37% this year), but percentages suffer in spot up situations. In the aggregate, mid-range game appears to be good, whereas his long range game is average, and overall, just an OK free throw shooter, so his shooting is likely just average, at best. Has some ability to draw fouls for a jumpshooter.
--Excellent defender and excellent build for position. Excellent defensive playmaker with a knack for steals, and also an excellent rebounder for his size. Defensively is where he could make his money, because offensively there's a ton of questions: he doesn't have the penetration or passing ability to be an alpha scorer, but lacks the spot-up game or really the touch to take in a true shooting role, so there isn't too much of a role for him there.

Michael Carter-Williams
--Oversized point guard with top notch defensive ability. Excellent defensive playmaker who is top notch at accruing steals but also gets a few blocks for size. Very good rebounder for size. Elite build for position, but underweight.
--On offense, lacks usage for position due to scoring limitations, but has creator mentality with isolation game (only 27.4% of shots assisted). Handles the ball with the intention to pass it as the first, second and third option, but also very turnover prone and will force passes.
--Subpar scorer in the NBA, but has a good use of the offensive floor. Subpar finisher, but has a knack for drawing fouls. Very poor pull-up game. Appears to have some potential as a spot-up three point shooter, but shot so poorly from three with many off the dribble this past season. Might be a decent long range shooter, but very poor free throw shooter for position as well as mid-range numbers raise concerns about shooting overall.
--It's really questionable whether he can score inside the three point line in the NBA and how that will affect his passing ability, and if he can find a scoring niche overall. However, he has real potential to hang on with elite defensive attributes, and if he can unlock his passing or dedicate himself to spot-up threes that could help. Syracuse has had a horrible track record with first round picks this decade, so there's always a grain of salt from their products as well.

Myck Kabongo
--Combo guard with a creator mentality with isolation and a desire to attack the rim (only 26.17% of shots assisted), but who lacks usage for the NBA due to subpar scoring limitations. Can pass like a NBA PG but incredibly turnover prone doing so, making his role probably more like a combo guard. Subpar finisher off the dribble but has an insane knack for drawing fouls.
--Shrunk the amount of jumpers he took this year, and has little range outside the paint. Has no mid-range pull-up (29%, 12%) and a very little long range game to speak of (30%, 29%) but he still takes most of those off the dribble. Slight hope given he is an OK free throw shooter for position, but that's the cap.
--Poor defender. Subpar defensive playmaker who despite 6'3" is absolutely pathetic in registering blocks. Quite a poor rebounder. Every offensive and defensive skill he possesses is a weakness--heavily reliant on foul drawing on offense but has little range and can't finish, and is a very turnover prone-passer. Defense he's highly unrefined across the board. At this point he's more athlete and less basketball player.

Ryan Kelly
--Inclined spot-up jumpshooter with a good use of the offensive floor. Passes the ball extremely well for his size, and also limits turnovers.
--Subpar scorer in the NBA with somewhat of a low usage. Good mid-range jumpshooter who is better with his feet set but can create a few shots from there (44% this season, 40% in his second year) and equally adept at spot up threes (42%, 41%), corroborated by good free throw shooting. Incredibly declining rate of at-rim shots to the point where he virtually didn't take any this past season, which might be due to his lingering injuries. However, has developed a real knack for drawing fouls even with the jumpers.
--Decent defender with very good defensive playmaking ability, particularly in shotblocking. Very poor rebounder for size. Top notch build for an NBA PF. Has a lot of intriguing qualities--a really good shooter who can pass the ball and limit turnovers with some defense, but he might lack the athleticism between the at-rim and rebounding game to take it up another notch.

Victor Oladipo
--Decent scoring small forward with a desire for isolations far more than the typical SF (only 46.54% of shots assisted).  Has developed OK passing ability at the small forward position, but very turnover prone with preferred isolation game.
--Subpar use of the offensive floor. Preferred perch is at-rim scoring, where he is a good finisher mostly off improvisation--top-notch offensive rebounder for size. However, note rate of foul drawing as decreased every year even though his percentage of at-rim attempts has stayed relatively the same. Also, might possibly be living off a one year fluke of excellent shooting (45% 2's, 44% 3's), given past history (24, 25% 2's, 21%, 18% 3's) and minimum attempts (less than two-fifths of his shots were jumpers). Has improved his jumper, but just an OK free throw shooter, and very likely at best he's just an OK shooter.
--Very good defender. Very good defensive playmaker with a knack for steals. Top-notch rebounder for size. Is really like Tony Allen--a defense-first athlete with an OK shot and a preferred at-rim game, but nothing really more than that.



Friday, July 26, 2013

NBA POWER RANKINGS

Now most of the moves have been made, time to analyze who's first and who's worst.
Starting lineup is PG-SG-SF-PF-C
Bench (left to right) is in order of quality