-Situational Statistics: the 2013 Small Forward Crop
-Just By the Numbers: the 2013 Shooting Guard Crop
-Situational Statistics: the 2013 Shooting Guard Crop
-Just By the Numbers: the 2013 Point Guard Crop
-Situational Statistics: the 2013 Point Guard Crop
NBA teams are continuing to employ statistics-minded decision makers more and more, adding the ever-growing field of advanced analytics to their toolset.
Whether it is situational statistics (X player shots X percentage from this spot on the floor in pick and rolls), statistical formulas that attempt to measure the totality of a player (Player Efficiency Rating, Win Shares, Wins Produced), or simply statistics used to try to improve upon what traditional statistics measure (say, using rebounding % instead of rebounds per game), the debate about the merits of many types of statistics rages on.
Still, the mining and use of statistics as a part of player evaluation continues to gain traction, and is likely to be an increasingly important part of decision making going forward.
Here, we will take a look at a few different statistics to evaluate different aspects in the profiles of the top small forwards in the draft. Some corroborate previously held opinions, while some will be surprising.
Points Per-40 Minutes Pace Adjusted
|Deshaun Thomas||NCAA||Ohio State||23|
|Glen Rice||NBADL||Rio Grande Valley||21.8|
|Sergey Karasev||Eurocup, VTB, RUS||Triumph Moscow||20.5|
|Robert Covington||NCAA||Tennessee State||19.5|
|James Ennis||NCAA||Long Beach State||18.7|
|Will Clyburn||NCAA||Iowa State||17.8|
|Tony Snell||NCAA||New Mexico||16.4|
|Dario Saric||Adriatic, Croatia||Cibona Zagreb||16.3|
|Reggie Bullock||NCAA||North Carolina||16.2|
|Carrick Felix||NCAA||Arizona State||16.2|
|Giannis Adetokunbo||Greece 2||Filathlitikos||16|
|Oleksandr Lypovyy||EuroCup, VTB||Donetsk||8.8|
Two key elements that we try to balance out when looking at statistics between prospects are the amount of minutes a prospect plays and the pace their team plays at. This is frequently done by looking at Per-40 Minutes Pace Adjusted numbers, which is essentially a formula that averages out a player's production over 40 minutes worth of play, while also accounting for the differences in the number of possessions between teams who play at different tempos.
The top of this list is frequently occupied by players who may not measure out well in many of the efficiency categories below, as the amount of offense they are required to produce for their respective teams frequently puts them in situations where they have to take lower percentage shots than those who are not focal points of an offense and are merely filling a role.
DeShaun Thomas of Ohio State and Shabazz Muhammad from UCLA bring are at the top of the list this year at 23 and 22 points per 40 minutes pace adjusted, respectively. Neither of the two were what you would call conventional high-usage wing players, as neither did a whole lot of creating off the dribble from the perimeter. However, they both showcased diversified offensive games, getting considerable portions of their offense from both post-ups and spot-up situations, making them tough covers for the opposition.
Also at the top of the list is Glen Rice, who saw a huge spike in his offensive contributions during the second half of his first professional season in the D-League, a huge bounce-back from his disappointing (both on and off the court) junior season at Georgia Tech. Rice bumped up his scoring from 18.2 to 21.8 points per 40 minutes pace adjusted, despite making the jump to professional basketball. As we'll see later, he did so in a highly efficient manner as well.
Otto Porter is likely to be the highest drafted of this group, despite coming in 6th in pure scoring numbers. Porter stepped into being the focal point of the Georgetown offense and also adds significant value outside of his scoring, both in his ability to facilitate Georgetown's Princeton style offense and also for his significant contributions on the defensive side of the court.
Bringing up the bottom of the list are a pair of international prospects. Livio Jean-Charles is a young tweener, who gets most of his contributions off of his athleticism and hustle, but as of yet lacks the refined perimeter game necessary to create much of his own offense. Oleksandr Lypovvy, at just 8.84 points per 40 minutes pace adjusted, is largely a prospect based off of his defensive versatility.
By contrast, Sergey Karasev's showing here looks especially impressive, as rarely will you find a 19-year old international prospect averaging over a point every two minutes on the floor at the level of competition he played at. He was the fourth most prolific scorer in this group, despite playing against by far the best competition.
Three Point Attempts Per-40 Minutes Pace Adjusted
|Glen Rice||NBADL||Rio Grande Valley||7.1|
|Reggie Bullock||NCAA||North Carolina||6.8|
|Deshaun Thomas||NCAA||Ohio State||6.6|
|Giannis Adetokunbo||Greece 2||Filathlitikos||6.4|
|Tony Snell||NCAA||New Mexico||6.1|
|Sergey Karasev||Eurocup, VTB, RUS||Triumph Moscow||6|
|James Ennis||NCAA||Long Beach State||5.6|
|Robert Covington||NCAA||Tennessee State||5.4|
|Will Clyburn||NCAA||Iowa State||4.5|
|Carrick Felix||NCAA||Arizona State||4.4|
|Dario Saric||Adriatic, Croatia||Cibona Zagreb||3.4|
|Oleksandr Lypovyy||EuroCup, VTB||Donetsk||2.8|
In the NBA, small forwards must be able to take and make perimeter jump shots, and this statistic shows how many three point field goals these prospects attempted, adjusting for minutes played and pace. It also gives us an idea about the roles these prospects played for their respective teams, the confidence they had in their perimeter shooting ability, and the freedom they were given by their former coaches.
Among those with the potential to be drafted in the first round, Glen Rice and Reggie Bullock were among the most prolific shooters, attempting 7.1 and 6.8 three point attempts per 40 minutes pace adjusted, connecting at a 37.9% and 42.2% clip respectively. Both have shown significant improvement in this respect over the years. The improvement Bullock has made over his three year career at North Carolina is especially encouraging, as his combination of catch and shoot ability along with defensive tenacity could form a valuable role player.
James Southerland leads this group overall by a wide margin, as his role for Syracuse was quite distinct as a spot-up shooter who could also come off screens.
Towards the bottom of this list is Otto Porter, who despite shooting an excellent percentage at 42.2%, did so on a relatively small sample size. His ability to show that he can extend that shot out to the NBA three point line as well as make it a more consistent part of his arsenal is a big step in his further development as an offensive player.
Three Point Attempts Per Field Goal Attempt
|Reggie Bullock||NCAA||North Carolina||0.57|
|Giannis Adetokunbo||Greece 2||Filathlitikos||0.51|
|Tony Snell||NCAA||New Mexico||0.48|
|Glen Rice||NBADL||Rio Grande Valley||0.46|
|James Ennis||NCAA||Long Beach State||0.43|
|Sergey Karasev||Eurocup, VTB, RUS||Triumph Moscow||0.41|
|Carrick Felix||NCAA||Arizona State||0.37|
|Deshaun Thomas||NCAA||Ohio State||0.36|
|Robert Covington||NCAA||Tennessee State||0.35|
|Will Clyburn||NCAA||Iowa State||0.35|
|Oleksandr Lypovyy||EuroCup, VTB||Donetsk||0.28|
|Dario Saric||Adriatic, Croatia||Cibona Zagreb||0.26|
This stat examines how heavily a player relied on the 3-ball to score points, which is a good indicator of the role these prospects played last season, but is an indirect gauge of how well each of them got to the rim as well. Players from whom a large proportion of their shots come from beyond the arc may have some deficiencies in terms of size, ball-handling ability, athleticism, aggressiveness, or shot-selection. Or they simply could be outstanding shooters. Every player should be judged individually in this regard.
It is not that surprising that James Southerland, Reggie Bullock, and Tony Snell are among the top players in this group in terms of three point attempts per field goal attempt, a metric that rates how much of their offensive game was based around the three point shot. Southerland (0.59 3PTA/FGA) and Bullock (0.57) were largely role players, who were infrequently asked to create offense either for themselves or others, something they likely won't be asked to do at the next level either as it doesn't fit their skill sets.
Otto Porter (0.29) is once again towards the bottom of the list, as the three point shot represented a relatively low portion of his offense. Shabazz Muhammad (0.23) is also fairly low on the list, as his high usage and ability to get shots in transition, off cuts, and around the rim cut down on his percentage in this statistical category.
It's interesting to see Giannis Adetokunbo ranking third here, with his numbers coming strictly from the Greek 2nd division. Adetokunbo did not play a huge role on this team as we'll see later, and only converted on 31% of the 3-pointers he took.
Free Throw Attempts Per-40 Minutes Pace Adjusted
|Sergey Karasev||Eurocup, VTB, RUS||Triumph Moscow||6.9|
|Will Clyburn||NCAA||Iowa State||6.6|
|Robert Covington||NCAA||Tennessee State||5.6|
|Glen Rice||NBADL||Rio Grande Valley||5.4|
|Dario Saric||Adriatic, Croatia||Cibona Zagreb||5.3|
|Deshaun Thomas||NCAA||Ohio State||5.3|
|James Ennis||NCAA||Long Beach State||4.8|
|Carrick Felix||NCAA||Arizona State||3.9|
|Tony Snell||NCAA||New Mexico||3.8|
|Giannis Adetokunbo||Greece 2||Filathlitikos||3.2|
|Reggie Bullock||NCAA||North Carolina||2.5|
|Oleksandr Lypovyy||EuroCup, VTB||Donetsk||1.3|
Free throws attempted per-40 minutes is a good statistic to measure the aggressiveness of a player getting to the rim, as well as his athleticism and ball-handling skills. In some ways, it provides an inverse look at the three-point stats we just looked at.
Sergey Karasev came in at the top of the list, which is somewhat surprising considering he's not usually regarded as being an incredibly explosive athlete. His ability to draw fouls and get to the free throw line helped offset his difficulties finishing at the rim, but it remains to be seen how well Karasev will be able to maintain this tremendous rate in the NBA. Nevertheless, this is a pretty good indication of how skilled, aggressive and crafty Karasev is at age 19.
Shabazz Muhammad (6.9 free throw attempts per 40 minutes pace adjusted), Will Clyburn (6.6), Otto Porter (6.1), and Robert Covington (5.6) round out the top 5 for this group. Clyburn and Covington are seniors who are hoping to hear their name called on draft night, but Porter and Muhammad are both likely lottery picks.
Muhammad's rate attests to his ability to score in a variety of ways at the rim, including in transition, crashing the offensive glass extremely well for a guard, running off of screens and even showing potential as a post scorer. His mature, strong upper body allow him to seek out and initiate contact, making getting to the line an important part of his game considering his inefficiency in other areas.
Porter is not considered the most explosive athlete or creative ball-handler around, so it's interesting to see how effective he was at getting to the line.
Towards the bottom of this list you'll find many of the jump shot centric wings, such as Tony Snell (3.8 FTA/40pa), Reggie Bullock (2.5) and James Southerland (2.3), as well as some of the offensively challenged European prospects such as Livio Jean-Charles and Oleksandr Lypovvy, who get to the line at a rate of 1.7 and 1.33 free throw attempts per 40 minutes pace adjusted, which is a very poor rate.
Giannis Adetokunbo's ball-handling ability did not necessarily translate into very many free throws in the Greek second division. He's still a fairly raw overall prospect and thus is considered one of the more long-term players in this draft.
True Shooting Percentage
|Reggie Bullock||NCAA||North Carolina||62.1|
|James Ennis||NCAA||Long Beach State||61.7|
|Glen Rice||NBADL||Rio Grande Valley||60.9|
|Carrick Felix||NCAA||Arizona State||59.2|
|Sergey Karasev||Eurocup, VTB, RUS||Triumph Moscow||57.6|
|Giannis Adetokunbo||Greece 2||Filathlitikos||57.2|
|Tony Snell||NCAA||New Mexico||56.8|
|Will Clyburn||NCAA||Iowa State||56.7|
|Dario Saric||Adriatic, Croatia||Cibona Zagreb||56.3|
|Deshaun Thomas||NCAA||Ohio State||55.7|
|Robert Covington||NCAA||Tennessee State||54.4|
|Oleksandr Lypovyy||EuroCup, VTB||Donetsk||47|
True Shooting Percentage is adjusted to account for what a player adds to their efficiency and team's point total with free throw attempts and 3-pointers. This stat attempts to adjust for all the ways a player can put points on the board. A player who makes 4/10 3-pointers contributes the same amount of points as a player who made 6/10 2-pointers, something that show up in the traditional field goal percentage stat (which would have the 3-point shooter at 40% FG% and the 2-point shooter at 60% FG%). This stat attempts to adjust for that.
The most efficient player, by a considerable margin, was Memphis senior D.J. Stephens at a 68% true shooting percentage. Stephens is an athletic specimen who spent most of his time inside the paint, despite barely measuring over 6'5 in shoes at the combine. To say that Stephens' overall offensive game is raw would be an understatement, and the combination of how limited he was on the offensive end and his insane athletic profile are major contributing factors to his incredible offensive efficiency.
Coming in at second and third are Reggie Bullock (62.1%) and James Ennis (61.7%). Bullock plays within his role, with well over 50% of his field goal attempts coming from behind the three point line, mostly in stationary catch-and-shoot situations, which he excels in.
Ennis increased his role substantially during his senior season, upping his scoring average from 13.5 points per 40 minutes pace adjusted to 18.6 this past season, although the competition he played against in the Big West had trouble matching up to his athleticism. He still has quite a bit of work to do to round out his offensive game, and how well he can play against better competition remains a question mark, but his profile is certainly intriguing and he stands a solid chance of getting drafted.
Rounding at the top five are Glen Rice (60.9%) and Otto Porter (59.8%). Rice has a good combination of proficiency from range (7.1 three point attempts per 40 minutes pace adjusted at 37.9%) and ability to get to the line (5.4 free throw attempts per 40 minutes pace adjusted). The combination of these skills creates a fairly efficient offensive player, which is especially impressive considering the competition he played against and the heavy offensive burden he carried down the stretch. His overall improvement marks a fairly incredible turnaround from where he was after getting kicked off of Georgia Tech's team last fall.
Some of the higher usage players are somewhat predictably lower down on the list, with DeShaun Thomas (55.7%) and Shabazz Muhammad (53.4%) towards the bottom of players expected to be drafted. Some of this is related to role, as the offensive burden they were asked to carry at times yields itself to long range two's and similarly inefficient shots. Some of it is also related to skill set, however. Neither Muhammad nor Thomas are extremely proficient creating off the dribble, and Muhammad, despite his upper body strength, struggles at times finishing around the hoop.
Assists Per-40 Minutes Pace Adjusted
|Tony Snell||NCAA||New Mexico||3.8|
|Oleksandr Lypovyy||EuroCup, VTB||Donetsk||3.6|
|Dario Saric||Adriatic, Croatia||Cibona Zagreb||3.4|
|Reggie Bullock||NCAA||North Carolina||3.3|
|Glen Rice||NBADL||Rio Grande Valley||3.2|
|Sergey Karasev||Eurocup, VTB, RUS||Triumph Moscow||2.6|
|James Ennis||NCAA||Long Beach State||2.5|
|Will Clyburn||NCAA||Iowa State||2.5|
|Giannis Adetokunbo||Greece 2||Filathlitikos||2.3|
|Carrick Felix||NCAA||Arizona State||1.8|
|Robert Covington||NCAA||Tennessee State||1.6|
|Deshaun Thomas||NCAA||Ohio State||1.5|
The next metric is looking at how frequently the prospects create scoring opportunities for their teammates, once again on a per-minute basis and adjusting for differences in pace.
The top of the list is somewhat surprising, with the jump shot oriented Tony Snell (3.8 assists per 40 minutes pace adjusted) and Reggie Bullock (3.59) coming in towards the top of the grouping. This shows not only some offensive talent around the players, as well as an offensive philosophy that promotes movement and sharing, but also an ability to make quick, decisive actions with the ball while also having good court vision. Neither of these players are likely to create much for teammates at the next level, but being able to make decisive actions with the ball and move it around the perimeter quickly helps the flow of an offense.
Otto Porter (3.2) is unsurprisingly near the top, coming in as the sixth best in these rankings. While Porter will have to show improvement to be the focal point of the offense in the same way he was at Georgetown -- although at 20, he still has some time to improve his skill set -- his ability to handle the ball as much as he did at Georgetown and get the team into their sets presents some intrigue if his shot creation skills continue to improve.
Sergey Karasev (2.55) also fared well here, showcasing his high basketball IQ, maturity and decision making ability.
DeShaun Thomas (1.5) and Shabazz Muhammad (1.0) came in very low on the list, at fourth worst and the worst overall for their positions, respectively. This is especially troubling considering the role they played on their teams and the fact that these are purely counting stats. This represents an overall weakness for both players, who come into the league almost exclusively as pure scorers.
D.J. Stephens and James Southerland were purely catch and finish players at the college level, and their standing here at second and third lowest in the assist category certainly reflects that.
Turnovers Per-40 Minutes Pace Adjusted
|Dario Saric||Adriatic, Croatia||Cibona Zagreb||4.1|
|James Ennis||NCAA||Long Beach State||3.3|
|Robert Covington||NCAA||Tennessee State||3.2|
|Will Clyburn||NCAA||Iowa State||3.1|
|Glen Rice||NBADL||Rio Grande Valley||2.9|
|Tony Snell||NCAA||New Mexico||2.7|
|Oleksandr Lypovyy||EuroCup, VTB||Donetsk||2.7|
|Giannis Adetokunbo||Greece 2||Filathlitikos||2.7|
|Sergey Karasev||Eurocup, VTB, RUS||Triumph Moscow||2.4|
|Carrick Felix||NCAA||Arizona State||2.2|
|Deshaun Thomas||NCAA||Ohio State||1.6|
|Reggie Bullock||NCAA||North Carolina||1.5|
The best turnover totals are unsurprisingly from players who played small roles, such as D.J. Stephens (1.1), Reggie Bullock (1.5), and James Southerland (1.6). While they should have fairly low totals due to both the low number of possessions they use and the fact that they finish plays more-so than create, not turning the ball over is a valuable trait for a role player to have.
Perhaps surprisingly up near the top of the list is DeShaun Thomas, who at 1.6 turnovers per 40 minutes pace adjusted turned the ball over very infrequently for somebody who was such a focal point of the Ohio State offense. While Thomas may not have created all that much for his teammates, and being asked to do less off dribble-drives helps him in this regard, his ability to not turn the ball over despite shouldering so much of the offensive load is a positive. The same goes for Shabazz Muhammad, who at 2.0 turnovers per 40 minutes did a relatively good job of taking care of the basketball.
James Ennis (3.3), Robert Covington (3.2), and Will Clyburn (3.1) were at the bottom of this list, all turning the ball over fairly frequently. Glen Rice had a relatively high turnover rate as well, at 2.9 turnovers per 40 minutes pace adjusted, something he struggled with at times at Georgia Tech as well. Rice could stand to continue to improve his ball handling, as he at times can lose control of the ball in tight spaces.
Dario Saric, who has already withdrawn from the draft, led this category by a huge margin, indicating he may have made a wise decision to pull out.
Pure Point Rating
|Reggie Bullock||NCAA||North Carolina||1.74|
|Tony Snell||NCAA||New Mexico||-0.43|
|Oleksandr Lypovyy||EuroCup, VTB||Donetsk||-0.73|
|Deshaun Thomas||NCAA||Ohio State||-1.56|
|Glen Rice||NBADL||Rio Grande Valley||-1.76|
|Sergey Karasev||Eurocup, VTB, RUS||Triumph Moscow||-1.8|
|Carrick Felix||NCAA||Arizona State||-2.52|
|Giannis Adetokunbo||Greece 2||Filathlitikos||-2.91|
|Will Clyburn||NCAA||Iowa State||-3.69|
|James Ennis||NCAA||Long Beach State||-4.22|
|Dario Saric||Adriatic, Croatia||Cibona Zagreb||-4.56|
|Robert Covington||NCAA||Tennessee State||-5.18|
Developed by John Hollinger, Pure Point Rating takes a look at a players overall passing value, weighing turnovers as slightly more detrimental than assists are helpful.
Lower-usage players once again show up near the top, with Reggie Bullock (1.74) at the top. The only other player with a positive ratio was Otto Porter at 0.87, once again showcasing his overall excellent decision making ability and feel for the game.
DeShaun Thomas was right about average, coming in at eighth in the group at -1.56. Shabazz Muhammad was towards the bottom, with his -3.16 as the fourth worst rate for the group. The worst overall figure, by a considerable margin, was Robert Covington of Tennessee State at -5.18, as he did not generate many assists but also turned the ball over at a well above average rate.
Rebounds Per-40 Minutes Pace Adjusted
|Dario Saric||Adriatic, Croatia||Cibona Zagreb||10.5|
|Glen Rice||NBADL||Rio Grande Valley||10|
|Robert Covington||NCAA||Tennessee State||9.3|
|Carrick Felix||NCAA||Arizona State||9|
|Giannis Adetokunbo||Greece 2||Filathlitikos||8.5|
|Will Clyburn||NCAA||Iowa State||8.2|
|Reggie Bullock||NCAA||North Carolina||7.7|
|James Ennis||NCAA||Long Beach State||7.5|
|Deshaun Thomas||NCAA||Ohio State||6.9|
|Sergey Karasev||Eurocup, VTB, RUS||Triumph Moscow||5.4|
|Oleksandr Lypovyy||EuroCup, VTB||Donetsk||5.4|
|Tony Snell||NCAA||New Mexico||3.4|
Having played most of his time at power forward and center, it's perhaps not surprising that D.J. Stephens comes in at the top of this list, at 10.6 rebounds per 40 minutes pace adjusted. With his lack of size, getting away with playing down low is questionable at best, and his ability to adapt to playing away from the basket will be key. That being said, Stephens' rebounding prowess on both the offensive and defensive end will be an asset at either position.
Glen Rice also posted solid numbers (10.0), particularly on the defensive end. His numbers were boosted somewhat by playing a lot of power forward in the D-League, but he has always been solid in this facet of the game.
Shabazz Muhammad (6.4), Adonis Thomas (5.8), Sergey Karasev (5.44), Oleksandr Lypovyy (5.35) and Tony Snell (3.4) rounded out the bottom of this list. Snell's figure is fairly disappointing considering his size, length and athleticism, as the margin between him and the next worst rebounder is very substantial.
Steals Per-40 Minutes Pace Adjusted
|Robert Covington||NCAA||Tennessee State||2.6|
|Dario Saric||Adriatic, Croatia||Cibona Zagreb||2.2|
|James Ennis||NCAA||Long Beach State||2|
|Carrick Felix||NCAA||Arizona State||1.6|
|Glen Rice||NBADL||Rio Grande Valley||1.5|
|Reggie Bullock||NCAA||North Carolina||1.4|
|Oleksandr Lypovyy||EuroCup, VTB||Donetsk||1.2|
|Giannis Adetokunbo||Greece 2||Filathlitikos||1.1|
|Will Clyburn||NCAA||Iowa State||1.1|
|Tony Snell||NCAA||New Mexico||1.1|
|Sergey Karasev||Eurocup, VTB, RUS||Triumph Moscow||0.9|
|Deshaun Thomas||NCAA||Ohio State||0.6|
Robert Covington led the group in steals per minute, with his 2.6 steals per 40 minutes pace adjusted the top mark among the group. Otto Porter also posted an excellent mark (2.2), combining his excellent length and effort on the defensive end to generate more opportunities for his team.
Tony Snell (1.1), Shabazz Muhammad (0.9), Sergey Karasev (0.89) and DeShaun Thomas (0.6) all posted disappointing numbers for wing players. None of them are particularly known for the defensive presence or physical profiles (with the possible exception of Snell, from an athletic standpoint), so this isn't just representative of defensive system or offensive load, but a part of larger concerns on the defensive end.
Blocks Per-40 Minutes Pace Adjusted
|Robert Covington||NCAA||Tennessee State||2.2|
|Giannis Adetokunbo||Greece 2||Filathlitikos||1.8|
|James Ennis||NCAA||Long Beach State||1.5|
|Dario Saric||Adriatic, Croatia||Cibona Zagreb||1.3|
|Glen Rice||NBADL||Rio Grande Valley||1.3|
|Carrick Felix||NCAA||Arizona State||1.2|
|Oleksandr Lypovyy||EuroCup, VTB||Donetsk||0.9|
|Tony Snell||NCAA||New Mexico||0.6|
|Will Clyburn||NCAA||Iowa State||0.4|
|Reggie Bullock||NCAA||North Carolina||0.3|
|Sergey Karasev||Eurocup, VTB, RUS||Triumph Moscow||0.3|
|Deshaun Thomas||NCAA||Ohio State||0.3|
This is yet another stat that can provide some insight into the physical traits that these players possess, as great size, a long wingspan, explosive athleticism can help quite a bit in putting up big block numbers.
With the exception of D.J. Stephens at 4.2 blocks per 40 minutes pace adjusted, none of these prospects are incredibly proficient at altering shots, which isn't unexpected for small forwards. Robert Covington (2.2), Rodney Williams (2.0), Giannis Adetokunbo (1.8) and James Ennis (1.5) all made the largest contributions.
Glen Rice (1.3) and Otto Porter (1.1) also made impacts in this facet of the game, although both will also play almost exclusively on the perimeter at the next level, which wasn't the case this past season.
DeShaun Thomas (0.3) and Shabazz Muhammad (0.2), not noted as great athlete or stout defensive players to begin with, brought up the bottom of this group.
|Deshaun Thomas||NCAA||Ohio State||27.2|
|Robert Covington||NCAA||Tennessee State||26.9|
|James Ennis||NCAA||Long Beach State||24.9|
|Sergey Karasev||Eurocup, VTB, RUS||Triumph Moscow||24.7|
|Will Clyburn||NCAA||Iowa State||24.6|
|Dario Saric||EruoCup, ADR, CRO||Cibona Zagreb||23.4|
|Tony Snell||NCAA||New Mexico||22.9|
|Glen Rice||NBADL||Rio Grande Valley||21.3|
|Carrick Felix||NCAA||Arizona State||20.9|
|Giannis Adetokunbo||Greece 2||Filathlitikos||20.4|
|Reggie Bullock||NCAA||North Carolina||18.2|
|Oleksandr Lypovyy||EuroCup, VTB||Donetsk||15.2|
On this metric, we attempt to look at what percentage of a team's possessions a player used while on the court. This is a good metric to try to gauge the role a player played on the team, as well as to use in parallel with other per-minute metrics to see how impactful a player was with the possessions he used.
It is not very surprising to see Shabazz Muhammad (29.8%) and DeShaun Thomas (29.2%) at the top of the list, as they filled the largest offensive roles for their respective clubs among the players here. This sometimes impacted their efficiency statistics, as because of the burden they were asked to carry, they were forced to take lower percentage shots than a player who was not asked to perform a large role and could be more selective.
It is then fairly predictable that D.J. Stephens (13% usage), Reggie Bullock (18.6%) and James Southerland (21.5%) are three of the lowest rated college players of this list. They were also towards the top of the list in true shooting percentage (68%, 62%, 59%, respectively). They were able to stay largely within their comfort zones offensively and limit lower percentage shots.
The unknown that comes into play is when players change roles at the next level, particularly for some of the higher usage prospects who may see a reduced role in the professional ranks. Deshaun Thomas, with his proficiency in catch and shoot situations and his ability to come off screens, could see his efficiency shoot up when he is able to take out the increase in shooting off the dribble he saw when he became a top option this season. In cases like his, it also helps that we had seen him fill a reduced role effectively in years past.
Player Efficiency Rating
|Robert Covington||NCAA||Tennessee State||25.1|
|James Ennis||NCAA||Long Beach State||24.7|
|Deshaun Thomas||NCAA||Ohio State||24.6|
|Reggie Bullock||NCAA||North Carolina||23.5|
|Glen Rice||NBADL||Rio Grande Valley||21.8|
|Carrick Felix||NCAA||Arizona State||21.8|
|Will Clyburn||NCAA||Iowa State||20.5|
|Dario Saric||Adriatic, Croatia||Cibona Zagreb||19.3|
|Sergey Karasev||Eurocup, VTB, RUS||Triumph Moscow||18.9|
|Giannis Adetokunbo||Greece 2||Filathlitikos||18.2|
|Tony Snell||NCAA||New Mexico||17.3|
|Oleksandr Lypovyy||EuroCup, VTB||Donetsk||7.4|
Player Efficiency Rating (PER) is a calculation derived by John Hollinger (previously of ESPN, now the Vice President of Basketball Operations for the Memphis Grizzlies) which attempts to combine various metrics (including both positive and negative tallies) to create a single value.
There are some drawbacks to PER, most of which Hollinger has readily admitted to, and he has stated the PER was never intended to be a final answer to a players impact. Some of these drawbacks include poorly measuring a player's defensive impact, as steals and blocks are the only metrics it uses on the defensive end, neither of which necessarily accurately display a players impact on that end of the court. It has also been argued that it can overvalue rebounders to a degree and. Perhaps most importantly, comparing a players PER to players in a different league creates considerable noise, as differences in rules and level of competition can impact the values substantially.
Showing PER's attempt to account for all facets of basketball, Otto Porter (27.7 PER) sits atop this list by a considerable margin, despite being 6th in per-minute scoring average. Porter is a very well rounded basketball contributor, with an ability to impact the game in many different ways.
D.J. Stephens comes in second at 25.2, despite having the lowest per-minute scoring margin of any college player in the group. Stephens rebounding, efficient scoring, and shot blocking prowess are on display here.
The big scorers, DeShaun Thomas (24.6) and Shabazz Muhammad (22.1), come in towards the middle of the pack at fifth and eighth, respectively, held down a bit by their lack of shot creation for others and the accumulation of negative stats, such as missed shots.
Reggie Bullock (23.5) and James Southerland (23.1) are two of the bigger surprises, considering their overall small role on the offensive end. However, their consistent contributions in terms of three pointers, rebounds, and steals, while not providing much in in the form of negative modifiers helps keep their PER relatively high.
Rodney Williams (18.9), Tony Snell (17.3), and Adonis Thomas (15.8) round out the bottom of the list for NCAA players. In terms of European prospects in this group, Sergey Karasev had the highest PER at 18.89, with Giannis Adetokundo (18.2) fairing relatively well also, but in a considerably weaker league. Livio Jean-Charles (13.5) and Oleksandr Lypovyy (7.44) brought up the bottom of the pack overall.