Amazing, yet totally believable headline from earlier this season: “Pelicans’ Anthony Davis drops rare 5×5 statistical game…”
Jaw-dropping headline from last week that I’m still not over: “Nurkic’s NBA-best 5×5…..” <RECORD SCRATCH>
That’s TWO five-by-fives already this season! A 20/20 5×5 from Jusuf Nurkic!?! The NBA is definitely “Where Amazing Happens”.
Quick nostalgia video for my fellow StarCraft and/or Aliens fans regarding the quote I hear in my head each time a 5×5 is mentioned:
I’ll try to keep it relatively short this week, as the concepts won’t be new. I thought it was high time we look at statistical scarcity again, now that we have a significant sample of this season’s stats. We’ve talked about how statistical performances compare across categories based on player rater values and just how good stats have to be to offset those that negatively affect us among other similar ideas. But this time, I’m back to comparing the scarcity of our counting stats, this time through the lens of the 5×5.
Thought I’d have a little throwback fun this week. Who’s tired of the Jordan vs LeBron debates? Yep. Me too. Jordan never lost a finals! LeBron hasn’t lost a conference finals in 8 years! Look at his teammates! Look at HIS teammates!… blah, blah, blah. Here’s the real question we care about in our world: Who was the better fantasy player? Now, it’s not quite the same argument as greatest of all time, because there are at least a handful of other players that have been more valuable fantasy-wise than one or both of these guys, but lets see if we can make some sense out of their fantasy careers. Thanks once again to Basketball Monster for having historical player raters.
Somehow, we’re already halfway through the NBA season. You know your team(s). The only major unknowns left are who else will get hurt, who will get shut down, and who will get a big value increase due to those injuries and the shutting down of said teammates. Aside from trying to grab some young guys that might get some extra run down the stretch, what else can you do to increase your odds of winning at this point? Well, staying active and streaming hot players will work wonders. But beyond that, I suggest checking out your team’s standing in each of what I’ll call the forgotten stats. Even the most astute fantasy player is going to be drawn to points, rebounds, assists, and threes out of habit and because of the way that we’re most often presented with stats.
I’m going to update you on the leaders in the boring and unsexy categories of field goal percentage, free throw percentage, steals, and blocks (in addition to FG% + FT% and steals + blocks). I’m sure some of you might be much more focused on the % categories than I just mentioned, but I think most players treat them as an afterthought. So, since others are more likely to ignore these forgotten stats, take advantage of that and focus on them if you can stand to gain points there. I think you’ll find that these categories are often led by some lesser names that can be had more cheaply than the points/rebounds/assists stars. Many are even available in most leagues.
Here are your most effective players in order of Basketball Monster’s per-game values (percentages are weighted) by category or combined categories through 1/9.
Where were you in 1999? Hard to believe that’s 14 years ago! I’m a spring chicken, so I was in 6th grade. Man, middle school was the worst. Elementary school was the shizz and in high school you could smoke good shizz. But middle school kids were just mean. Where was Tim Duncan in 1999? Oh just winning an NBA title with David Robinson. I had completely forgotten David Robinson has a 71-point game in 1994. Maybe Brittney Griner could get that. Duncan was huge last night fending off the Mavericks, grabbing the second highest total of rebounds this season with 19 and scoring 28 points on 12-20 shooting. After missing a game with a sore knee, Duncan didn’t miss a beat in the post. With the trade deadline passed, Duncan owners can have some optimism that even if he sits a game here and there down the stretch, he can still go off and be one board away from a Goromotaro.
It was a light slate of NBA games (only 2 last night), but let’s take a quick look at what happened across the NBA: