Stats from GSW-HOU game 4 (from NBA.com):
“Examining Houston’s 3-point shooting, Harden’s playoff career-high 45 points, Dwight Howard’s rim protection and more.”
Read it here: http://stats.nba.com/featured/sportvu_warriors_rockets_gm4_2015_05_25.html
– LeBron James bearing unprecedented load as Cavaliers close in on Finals (from Ben Golliver, Sports Illustrated):
” Picture Atlas with the world braced on his shoulders, and then picture someone gradually inflating the globe, day after day. Two options emerge: Atlas continues to impress everyone with his unprecedented strength, or the weight eventually becomes even too much for him to bear.
That’s where LeBron James finds himself as the Cavaliers look to sweep theHawks on Wednesday and claim their second Finals appearance in franchise history. As these playoffs have progressed, and as his teammates have missed time with injuries, James has steadily carried more and more on his shoulders. So far, he’s made due just fine: Cleveland is 9-2 in the playoffs despite losing Kevin Love to a season-ending shoulder injury in the first round and losing Kyrie Irving to knee tendonitis for multiple games in the East finals.
But cracks appear to be developing. James was hobbling around the court down the stretch of Game 3 on Sunday, as he did his best to fight off cramping that has sidelined him multiple times over the course of his career. Although specifics on his health have been hard to pin down, James may also be dealing with knee and/or ankle issues. Cavaliers coach David Blatt said after Game 3 that James had played through “pain,” adding Monday that his star player was dealing with “a number of things” after getting “banged up a little bit.”
Read it here: http://www.si.com/nba/2015/05/26/lebron-james-cavaliers-hawks-usage-rate-nba-finals-kyrie-irving
– Paul Millsap: The Quiet Man (from Jonathan Abrams, grantland.com):
” Facing elimination in the Eastern Conference finals, the Atlanta Hawks’ Paul Millsap remains stoic and determined, like he’s always been”
Read it here: http://grantland.com/features/the-quiet-man-paul-millsap-nba-playoffs-2015-atlanta-hawks-cleveland-cavaliers-eastern-conference-utah-jazz/
– We Interrupt This Eulogy for the NBA Post-Up Game to Bring You Its Rebirth (from Zach Lowe, grantland.com):
” Post-ups appear to be dying, and on the surface, these playoffs read like their obituary.
But no basketball skill ever goes extinct, and if you view these playoffs as a window into the league’s future, you can see a world in which the post-up makes a comeback”
Read and view it here: http://grantland.com/the-triangle/we-interrupt-this-eulogy-for-the-nba-post-up-game-to-bring-you-its-rebirth/
– Understanding Kyle Korver’s Injury: A Complete Primer to Ankle Injuries (from Jeff Stotts, instreetclothes.com):
Read it here: http://instreetclothes.com/2015/05/23/understanding-kyle-korvers-injury-a-complete-primer-to-ankle-injuries/
– STEPHEN CURRY: OVERCOMING ODDS WITH HUMILITY (from Clevis Murray, truschoolsports.com):
Read it here: http://www.truschoolsports.com/2015/05/stephen-curry-overcoming-odds-with-humility/
– Nets’ offseason priorities (from Marc Stein and Mike Mazzeo (ESPN):
Read it here: http://espn.go.com/blog/marc-stein/post/_/id/3873/summer-scoop-nets-offseason-priority
– OKC: Following The Warriors’ Plan (from Jake Fielder, thunderousintentions.com):
Read it here: http://thunderousintentions.com/2015/05/26/following-warriors-plan/
– The Hometown Assist (from Seth Partnow, Nylon Calculus):
” A topic to which I return with some frequency is the degree to which statistical analysis of basketball is impacted by imperfect input data. As the expression goes, “garbage in, garbage out.” No matter how much care is put into building a model, flawed inputs lead to misleading outputs. Especially in terms of box score stats, traditional numbers can be pretty good, but don’t capture what happens on the floor with anything resembling perfect accuracy.
We know this already, and have had many practical demonstrations: all rebounds aren’t created equal; shot blocking and rim protection aren’t totally synonymous; differentiating between turnovers and steals is important, and so on. Even on such topic of plus/minus-based one-number metrics, the input data is messy. The degree of randomness in made or missed jump shots by teammates or opponents can easily skew the results. It is hoped with sufficient sample size, this evens out. And on aggregate, it probably does. But in evaluating players or specific teams, we aren’t dealing in aggregates. None of the above invalidates the whole process, but it should operate as a reminder that for all the numeric exactitude of the result, that result remains an estimate.
Almost nowhere is this problem on better display than the assist stat.
By comparing expected assists based on touch time with actual assists awarded both home and away, very different patterns emerge for each team.
A few extra assists here or there matter far more to the chattering classes than it does in the actual outcome of games. Further, if a team is systematically overrating its own players with generous scoring decisions, they are only hurting themselves. If management buys into a player being better because of inflated totals, the team is set up for disappointment, while if the league as a whole buys in, the free agent price tag goes up, forcing the team to either overpay or let the player walk.
However, for the purposes of statistical analysis, it does matter. If Paul’s assists are worth less than Mike Conley’s because of the relative generousness of the awards, that impacts a comparison between the two. At the very minimum it’s just another reminder that there remains a great deal of uncertainty in terms of measuring basketball impacts.”
Read it here: http://nyloncalculus.com/2015/05/26/underneath-the-box-score-hood-the-hometown-assist/
– Cryotherapy draws athletes, others for icy-cold treatments (from Sammy Caiola, Saramento Bee):
Read it here: http://www.bellinghamherald.com/2015/05/26/4313840_chillin-time-cryotherapy-draws.html
Additional player notes, updates, profiles:
– Tristan Thompson: http://www.sportsnet.ca/basketball/nba/thompson-happy-to-do-dirty-work-for-star-studded-cavs/
– Matthew Dellavedova: http://www.torontosun.com/2015/05/25/nba-needs-to-crack-down-on-dellavedova
– Pat Beverley: http://blog.chron.com/ultimaterockets/2015/05/pat-beverleys-absence-shows-his-value-to-rockets/
– John Wall: http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/wizards-insider/wp/2015/05/26/john-wall-season-in-review-ascension-to-superstar-status-concludes-on-sour-note/
– J.J. Barea: http://www.mavs.com/2015-year-in-review-jj-barea/
– Raymond Felton: http://www.mavs.com/raymond-felton-earned-respect-of-mavs-during-injury-riddled-season-limited-playing-time/
– Jimmy Butler: http://chibullszone.com/2015/05/26/an-increased-post-presence-next-step-for-butler/
– Courtney Lee: http://www.grizzlybearblues.com/2015/5/26/8641909/memphis-grizzlies-2014-15-player-review-courtney-lee
– Allen Crabbe: http://ripcityproject.com/2015/05/26/allen-crabbe-ready-to-join-portland-trail-blazers-rotation/
– Eric Gordon: http://www.bourbonstreetshots.com/2015/05/25/season-in-review-eric-gordon-3/
– CJ McCollum: http://www.blazersedge.com/2015/5/26/8659283/cj-mccollum-portland-trail-blazers-stats-playoffs
– Tyler Zeller: http://hardwoodhoudini.com/2015/05/25/boston-celtics-player-review-tyler-zeller/
– Jeremy Lamb: http://newsok.com/oklahoma-city-thunder-jeremy-lamb-wants-a-fair-honest-to-goodness-chance/article/5422415
– Kyle O’Quinn: http://orlandomagicdaily.com/2015/05/26/orlando-magic-player-evaluations-kyle-oquinn/
– Anthony Tolliver: http://www.detroitbadboys.com/2015/5/26/8648097/anthony-tolliver-detroit-pistons-season-reviews-2014-2015