PDA

View Full Version : Basketball Prospectus blasts Hansbrough's NPOYs



bdh21
03-12-2008, 11:47 AM
article (http://www.basketballprospectus.com/article.php?articleid=232)

Thoughts?

Wander
03-12-2008, 12:01 PM
The people on that site are usually intelligent, but they're a slave to their numbers.

jlear
03-12-2008, 12:02 PM
Could it be that Kevin Love is not good for college basketball and Tyler "travels every time" Hansborough is?

Duvall
03-12-2008, 12:17 PM
The people on that site are usually intelligent, but they're a slave to their numbers.

Yeah, but what are the numbers overlooking here? Love and Hansbrough play the same position on talented teams that have seen similar success this year.

SilkyJ
03-12-2008, 12:19 PM
seems like a silly argument to me. 18 & 10 ain't 24 & 10 and the other stuff is a wash, and if anything is in favor of hans: (i.e. they both play for top teams so thats a wash, but hansbrough stepped up his game when lawson went out and carried the team...add in the fact that hansbrough is a junior and has done this for 3 straight seasons now, and its not even close)

the real argument is between Hansbrough and Beasley, and I would have given it to beasley a month ago, but the way hans carried his team w/o lawson, I have to give it to Hans now...

hc5duke
03-12-2008, 12:22 PM
article (http://www.basketballprospectus.com/article.php?articleid=232)

Thoughts?

He lost me when he dismissed Michael Beasley...

EarlJam
03-12-2008, 12:28 PM
seems like a silly argument to me. 18 & 10 ain't 24 & 10 and the other stuff is a wash, and if anything is in favor of hans: (i.e. they both play for top teams so thats a wash, but hansbrough stepped up his game when lawson went out and carried the team...add in the fact that hansbrough is a junior and has done this for 3 straight seasons now, and its not even close)

the real argument is between Hansbrough and Beasley, and I would have given it to beasley a month ago, but the way hans carried his team w/o lawson, I have to give it to Hans now...

I agree with every single word of this assessment. Tell me why Hansbrough is NOT deserving. The numbers, the carrying of the team on his back in Lawson's absence. He plays for the number one team in the country and they wouldn't be there without him.

Good analysis Silky J. Again, for anyone, give me one compelling reason (other than the fact he looks like the offspring of Sinead O' Connor and Beaker) for why he SHOULDN'T be player of the year.

-EarlJam, who hates UNC but really admires Hansbrough's achievements

Wander
03-12-2008, 12:38 PM
Yeah, but what are the numbers overlooking here? Love and Hansbrough play the same position on talented teams that have seen similar success this year.

Well, I'd start by asking why the guy even bother quoting Hansbrough's freshman and sophomore numbers - how do those have any relevance at all? Who cares if freshman Love is better than freshmen Hansbrough? I think that he mentions it at all is evidence of an agenda.

Oh, and I think the numbers overlook how Hansbrough stepped up his play while Lawson was injured.

CDu
03-12-2008, 12:40 PM
seems like a silly argument to me. 18 & 10 ain't 24 & 10 and the other stuff is a wash, and if anything is in favor of hans: (i.e. they both play for top teams so thats a wash, but hansbrough stepped up his game when lawson went out and carried the team...add in the fact that hansbrough is a junior and has done this for 3 straight seasons now, and its not even close)

the real argument is between Hansbrough and Beasley, and I would have given it to beasley a month ago, but the way hans carried his team w/o lawson, I have to give it to Hans now...

Well, the argument is that Love's 18 is more efficient than Hansbrough's 23. And that Love is a better rebounder. And that Love gets more assists and blocks more shots than Hansbrough. This is all magnified when you consider the fact that UNC gets a lot more possessions per game (i.e., more chances for Hansbrough to get rebounds, points, etc).

Also, the award is not a lifetime achievement award, so the fact that Hansbrough has done it for a long time should be irrelevant. It is the 2007-2008 player of the year award.

I think it's a nitpicky argument on the margins, but I don't think it's a silly one.

tbyers11
03-12-2008, 12:41 PM
seems like a silly argument to me. 18 & 10 ain't 24 & 10 and the other stuff is a wash, and if anything is in favor of hans: (i.e. they both play for top teams so thats a wash, but hansbrough stepped up his game when lawson went out and carried the team...add in the fact that hansbrough is a junior and has done this for 3 straight seasons now, and its not even close)

the real argument is between Hansbrough and Beasley, and I would have given it to beasley a month ago, but the way hans carried his team w/o lawson, I have to give it to Hans now...

Doesn't seem like a silly argument to me. 18 and 10 for Love is a lot more impressive when you consider that UCLA plays at a much slower (11 possessions a game) pace than UNC. I think the rebounding
(especially the defensive ones) and assist stats are not a wash. Love is a better rebounder and passer than Hansbrough. That is pretty obvious when watching him play.

Love also carried his team when Collison was out or not 100% early in the season. UCLA is a top team in a top conference just like UNC. If you look at the stats that Gasaway shows (and throw in assists and blocks as well) Love is better than Hans in everything but FT rate this year.

I'm not sure that I would vote for Love over Hans, but he makes a good argument about the effects of media and perception.

RelativeWays
03-12-2008, 12:42 PM
I'm with Earljam. Its hard to win in this league when both your #1 and #2 point guards are out, yet Beaker did everything he could to help the holes win during that stretch. I'd take him over Beasley just because I'm not a big fan on giving MVPs or NPOY awards to the guy who scores the most. I want the guy who drives his team to victory.

Clipsfan
03-12-2008, 12:59 PM
Doesn't seem like a silly argument to me. 18 and 10 for Love is a lot more impressive when you consider that UCLA plays at a much slower (11 possessions a game) pace than UNC. I think the rebounding
(especially the defensive ones) and assist stats are not a wash. Love is a better rebounder and passer than Hansbrough. That is pretty obvious when watching him play.

Love also carried his team when Collison was out or not 100% early in the season. UCLA is a top team in a top conference just like UNC. If you look at the stats that Gasaway shows (and throw in assists and blocks as well) Love is better than Hans in everything but FT rate this year.

I'm not sure that I would vote for Love over Hans, but he makes a good argument about the effects of media and perception.

As the resident UCLA fan, I have to throw in that I think it's a great argument. I'm not sure that Love should be player of the year, but if you look at his rebounding rate as a % of available rebounds, it's ridiculous. His numbers are "only" 18 and 11 because he does effectively play in shorter games due to the pace. Additionally, they is a much larger emphasis on defense for UCLA. However, I'm not positive that Love is a great defender, although he does do alright. He's stepped up his help defense (which is generally where he gets his blocks) but his foot speed on hedges is a real concern.

dcarp23
03-12-2008, 01:03 PM
I will start out by saying that I think Hansbrough is a tremendous player and on an upper echelon historically in the ACC. I'd love to have him playing for Duke and cannot imagine how much vitriole would be spewed his way if he did.

That said, I think there are plenty of arguments in support of Kevin Love. UCLA plays games that average 65.1 possessions per game (according to Pomeroy). UNC plays games that average 76.1 possessions per game. While Hansbrough does average 23.1 and 10.5 a game, Kevin Love would be averaging 20.4 and 12.8 playing at that pace. Are 2.7 points and 2.3rebounds a wash? That argument could be made (as could the one that 2.3 rebounds is more important than 2.7 points), though I certainly don't know how to quantify them. Statistically, other than scoring less and having roughly the same FT%, Love does everything better than Hansbrough (notably the assists and blocks).

As for playing for the number one team, I don't buy that argument at all. The polls have Carolina ranked higher, Pomeroy has UCLA higher. Who's right? Who knows? Polls and rating systems are completely subjective.

Both these teams, at this point, are a wash. If Wayne Ellington's shot does not go in at Clemson or the shot by Tech at the buzzer goes down, Carolina is certainly not ranked number one right now, and not one of those outcomes would be Hansbrough's fault. And while Carolina did make it through unscathed (almost) without Lawson, they weren't exactly staring down murderer's row. Had they been forced to play Stanford, Arizona, USC or Washington State, who knows what the results might have been?

The answer is that no one does, and I think that feeds into the larger point of the basketball prospectus article. I think Hansbrough is plenty deserving of winning this award, and I gathered the BP writer did not have a huge problem with it either. What bothered him the most is that discussions like this never even occurred. I have watched a ton of basketball this year, and while I have seen Hansbrough play probably 20 times, I think I might have seen part of one UCLA game. I think the author was arguing that there is an argument for someone other than Hansbrought to have been named POY, but no one is making it.

CDu
03-12-2008, 01:04 PM
I agree with every single word of this assessment. Tell me why Hansbrough is NOT deserving. The numbers, the carrying of the team on his back in Lawson's absence. He plays for the number one team in the country and they wouldn't be there without him.

Good analysis Silky J. Again, for anyone, give me one compelling reason (other than the fact he looks like the offspring of Sinead O' Connor and Beaker) for why he SHOULDN'T be player of the year.

-EarlJam, who hates UNC but really admires Hansbrough's achievements

The argument is pretty simple. It's not an argument that Hansbrough isn't deserving - he's had a great year, and as BP says, he's the second-best player in the country. The argument is that, when you discount stats by the number of possessions the player's team has and consider efficiency as opposed to raw totals, Love's numbers look better than Hansbrough's.

killerleft
03-12-2008, 01:33 PM
One could argue either way between Hansbrough and Love. Very even? Give it to the junior. Perhaps they'll meet for the right to meet Duke in the Championship Game (!) and... uh... duke it out.

Troublemaker
03-12-2008, 02:00 PM
The people on that site are usually intelligent, but they're a slave to their numbers.

What do you mean?

Troublemaker
03-12-2008, 02:00 PM
Could it be that Kevin Love is not good for college basketball and Tyler "travels every time" Hansborough is?

Possibly, but I don't see the argument.

EarlJam
03-12-2008, 02:08 PM
The argument is pretty simple. It's not an argument that Hansbrough isn't deserving - he's had a great year, and as BP says, he's the second-best player in the country. The argument is that, when you discount stats by the number of possessions the player's team has and consider efficiency as opposed to raw totals, Love's numbers look better than Hansbrough's.

Maybe, but "the numbers" alone do not tell the whole story. Hansbrough has demonstrated leadership and clutchiness (my word) all year when it counts (see Clemson games).

The guy is the face of UNC basketball and UNC is #1 in the country. He's their undisputed leader, their go-to guy. I don't see how anyone else could come close to challenging him for this award this year.

Even if his eyes do bug out of his head.

-EarlJam

P.S. Sorry, Just can't let a Pro-Hansbrough post go without a jab.

Troublemaker
03-12-2008, 02:09 PM
Well, I'd start by asking why the guy even bother quoting Hansbrough's freshman and sophomore numbers - how do those have any relevance at all? Who cares if freshman Love is better than freshmen Hansbrough? I think that he mentions it at all is evidence of an agenda.

What agenda would that be? They posted those stats to support this line in the article: "It's taken Hansbrough three seasons to become the weapon on offense that Love already is."



Oh, and I think the numbers overlook how Hansbrough stepped up his play while Lawson was injured.

Note that Love played the early part of this season without HIS point guard, Darren Collison, too.

The article is a good article for what it is -- a statistical comparison between Love and Hansbrough. IMO, there's no reason to read into it any sort of nebulous agenda or personality defects ("slave to the stats") of the author(s).

Bluedawg
03-12-2008, 02:15 PM
article (http://www.basketballprospectus.com/article.php?articleid=232)

Thoughts?

POY should go to a complete player


He's an adequate defensive rebounder, he never blocks shots (ten the entire year) and rarely records assists (28).

Hansborough is not that. he has never truly impressed me becasue of this.

Troublemaker
03-12-2008, 02:19 PM
Maybe, but "the numbers" alone do not tell the whole story. Hansbrough has demonstrated leadership and clutchiness (my word) all year when it counts (see Clemson games).

The guy is the face of UNC basketball and UNC is #1 in the country. He's their undisputed leader, their go-to guy. I don't see how anyone else could come close to challenging him for this award this year.

Even if his eyes do bug out of his head.

-EarlJam

P.S. Sorry, Just can't let a Pro-Hansbrough post go without a jab.

I don't follow UCLA as closely as ClipsFan but I'm sure he could point out examples this season of Love showing leadership and clutchiness as well. Heck, I can think of an example off the top of my head. His 3-pter against Cal which cut the lead to 1. That was very clutch and could end up being the difference between a 1 seed and 2 seed for UCLA. The other stuff ("face of UNC", UNC #1 in the country) I don't see as too relevant to the discussion. Don't worry -- Hansbrough will, in all likelihood, sweep the NPOY awards, so for all practical purposes, no competitor WILL come close to challenging him for those awards.

But a case can be made for Kevin Love to win NPOY and one variation of that case was aptly presented by that author Gasaway from Basketball Prospectus (he's also known as the "Big Ten Wonk"). The article was fine. But it's okay to disagree with it and it's okay to agree with it as well.

SilkyJ
03-12-2008, 02:23 PM
Also, the award is not a lifetime achievement award, so the fact that Hansbrough has done it for a long time should be irrelevant. It is the 2007-2008 player of the year award.


Perhaps it should be irrelevant as you say, but I don't think it is. Voters take that stuff into consideration. Last year Durant was a runaway but you still had people talking about what it would mean to give the wooden/naismith award to a freshman and all that. (same deal in football, even moreso, actually. voters hate to give the heisman to an underclassman)



Oh, and I think the numbers overlook how Hansbrough stepped up his play while Lawson was injured.

His overall #'s do overlook that, but if you look at his numbers over that stretch and its pretty indicative of how he stepped up his play. I don't know if people have/would really take the time to do that, though its not difficult...


Doesn't seem like a silly argument to me. 18 and 10 for Love is a lot more impressive when you consider that UCLA plays at a much slower (11 possessions a game) pace than UNC. I think the rebounding
(especially the defensive ones) and assist stats are not a wash. Love is a better rebounder and passer than Hansbrough. That is pretty obvious when watching him play.

Love also carried his team when Collison was out or not 100% early in the season. UCLA is a top team in a top conference just like UNC. If you look at the stats that Gasaway shows (and throw in assists and blocks as well) Love is better than Hans in everything but FT rate this year.

I'm not sure that I would vote for Love over Hans, but he makes a good argument about the effects of media and perception.

All that stuff is great and I may even agree, but what counts the most for winning POY are the "Big 3" stats: Pts, asts, rebs. When you are guard its Pts and asts, and when you are a big man its pts and rebs. Tyler scores more points, by a significant amount. Voters don't really consider pace of play (if at all) or stuff like stls/blocks unless you are SUCH a good defender that you are getting upwards of 3 stls or blcks per game. And even then, that takes a serious backseat to the Big 3.

I guess I should rephrase my original comment that the argument was "silly." His breakdown of the #'s is well and good, but if we are considering who should win POY I have to go off of what I "know" to be the criteria that voters use, and it basically goes like this: "who's putting up the best numbers and how is their team doing." Then add-in extra stuff like special circumstances (i.e. carrying your team while a player is injured or perhaps are you playing on a top team like memphis playing in C-USA or are you a top team like UCLA/UNC playing in a top conference)

CDu
03-12-2008, 02:26 PM
Maybe, but "the numbers" alone do not tell the whole story. Hansbrough has demonstrated leadership and clutchiness (my word) all year when it counts (see Clemson games).

The guy is the face of UNC basketball and UNC is #1 in the country. He's their undisputed leader, their go-to guy. I don't see how anyone else could come close to challenging him for this award this year.

Even if his eyes do bug out of his head.

-EarlJam

P.S. Sorry, Just can't let a Pro-Hansbrough post go without a jab.

Hey, I think the arguments for Hansbrough are quite strong, and they are the reason he's going to win. The point of the article is simply to suggest that, based purely on performance on the floor, there's a pretty strong argument that Love had the better year performance-wise. But the award isn't based on pure performance. Other factors are considered. These other factors (including publicity, preseason hype, etc) have swayed toward Hansbrough.

ugadevil
03-12-2008, 02:31 PM
POY should go to a complete player



Hansborough is not that. he has never truly impressed me becasue of this.

Welcome back Bluedawg! Where ya' been!?!

Troublemaker
03-12-2008, 02:32 PM
Perhaps it should be irrelevant as you say, but I don't think it is. Voters take that stuff into consideration. Last year Durant was a runaway but you still had people talking about what it would mean to give the wooden/naismith award to a freshman and all that. (same deal in football, even moreso, actually. voters hate to give the heisman to an underclassman)

His overall #'s do overlook that, but if you look at his numbers over that stretch and its pretty indicative of how he stepped up his play. I don't know if people have/would really take the time to do that, though its not difficult...

All that stuff is great and I may even agree, but what counts the most for winning POY are the "Big 3" stats: Pts, asts, rebs. When you are guard its Pts and asts, and when you are a big man its pts and rebs. Tyler scores more points, by a significant amount. Voters don't really consider pace of play (if at all) or stuff like stls/blocks unless you are SUCH a good defender that you are getting upwards of 3 stls or blcks per game. And even then, that takes a serious backseat to the Big 3.

I guess I should rephrase my original comment that the argument was "silly." His breakdown of the #'s is well and good, but if we are considering who should win POY I have to go off of what I "know" to be the criteria that voters use, and it basically goes like this: "who's putting up the best numbers and how is their team doing." Then add-in extra stuff like special circumstances (i.e. carrying your team while a player is injured or perhaps are you playing on a top team like memphis playing in C-USA or are you a top team like UCLA/UNC playing in a top conference)

So, are you critical of the article or not?
Because you seem to be confusing/conflating two separate opinions:
(a) that of which player the voters will pick to win
(b) that of which player deserves to win

Your criticism of the article seemingly deals with (a) but the article itself deals with (b).

Bluedawg
03-12-2008, 02:33 PM
Welcome back Bluedawg! Where ya' been!?!

Health issues and work has kept me rather busy...I've been checking in although not posting a lot.

wumhenry
03-12-2008, 02:53 PM
UCLA plays games that average 65.1 possessions per game (according to Pomeroy). UNC plays games that average 76.1 possessions per game. While Hansbrough does average 23.1 and 10.5 a game, Kevin Love would be averaging 20.4 and 12.8 playing at that pace.
ASSUMING he could play at that elevated pace with the same efficiency.

dukemomLA
03-12-2008, 02:58 PM
Being in L.A., I've had the opportunity to see Kevin Love in person (6+times at Pauley), and with televised games on the road. A fabulous player -- a given. A thug -- absolutely. The amount of hard fouls he commits, while being a wiley, smart player to do such under the radar of the refs, is amazing.

Looking forward to his "advance" to the NBA. CBB is better than this.

Although not a fan of TH, even Duke fans have to admit he plays hard every day, every play............. even though he travels almost every play, and almost never gets called for fouls as he should.

phillyheel
03-12-2008, 03:07 PM
ASSUMING he could play at that elevated pace with the same efficiency.


Good point. Also why weren't steals mentioned and blocks were? How about the number of minutes opposing play didn't play due to foul trouble guarding Hans? How about getting your team in the bonus early due to fouls drawn, etc.

AtlDuke72
03-12-2008, 03:24 PM
But a case can be made for Kevin Love to win NPOY and one variation of that case was aptly presented by that author Gasaway from Basketball Prospectus (he's also known as the "Big Ten Wonk"). The article was fine. But it's okay to disagree with it and it's okay to agree with it as well.

It doesn't even seem like a close question to me. Hansborough has dominated virtually every game he has played in this year and obviously is a real leader on his team. Love has great games and tons of potential, but there has been a debate all year about his actions and whether you would even want him in the locker room. Earlier in the year his own coach said he was not in shape. Hansborough scores 5 points more a game. I suppose it is good to have debates but the answer is clear cut in my mind. If the Devils had TH playing next to Singler can you imagine how badly we would beat everybody else?

By the way, where are all those posts from two years ago saying how much better McRoberts was than Hansborough?

Chitowndevil
03-12-2008, 03:43 PM
The article is interesting. I disagree with the conclusion, but it is striking that Hansbrough's game is so one-dimensional.

Really the debate boils down to one I've had many, many times over baseball. When determining MVPs, do you look at 'old school' triple crown stats (AVG, HR, RBI), which are essentially season totals, or 'sabermetric' stats (OPS, ISO) designed to measure production per at-bat. The answer is you look at both, and also a bunch of subjective criteria involving how a player performed in certain situations and what kind of role he played on his team.

Regardless of sport, if you're clearly the best player on what most people agree is the best team, you're the favorite for PoY/MVP unless somebody else's stats clearly dominate yours. Hansbrough fits the former criterion and his 'old school' stats are better than Love's. For most reasonable people, that's enough to end the argument.

SilkyJ
03-12-2008, 03:57 PM
So, are you critical of the article or not?
Because you seem to be confusing/conflating two separate opinions:
(a) that of which player the voters will pick to win
(b) that of which player deserves to win

Your criticism of the article seemingly deals with (a) but the article itself deals with (b).

I am critical of the argument that Kevin Love should be NPOY.

Should is the key word b/c different people have different views of what should count in the voting, but I think that's another argument for another time.

What does count is all the stuff I mentioned earlier and so based on that, Hansbrough should or as you say, "deserves" to be NPOY.

I am not trying to comment as much on whether his argument in favor of love is good or bad b/c he is arguing points that seem moot to me. This efficiency and pace of play stuff is meaningless to me b/c its meaningless to the voters.

I do understand why you think I am confusing the two opinions, but I'm trying to say that most people who are arguing about B (which player deserves to win) are arguing about what criteria should count and how to weight the different factors. I am saying thats a separate argument. I am using the aforementioned criteria that the voters will use to say 1) who deserves to win (based on that criteria) as well as 2) who the voters will pick. #1 is my personal analytical viewpoint based on an assessment of criteria (again, the same one the voters use..or at least I think they use) whereas #2 is trying to read the mind of voters.


How about getting your team in the bonus early due to fouls drawn, etc.

Hate to break it to ya, but the average elapsed time before you enter the bonus isn't a stat that is kept officially and more importantly it isn't a metric most people use (and it would be ridiculous to expect people to monitor that individually)

CDu
03-12-2008, 04:01 PM
I am critical of the argument that Kevin Love should be NPOY.

Should is the key word b/c different people have different views of what should count in the voting, but I think that's another argument for another time.

What does count is all the stuff I mentioned earlier and so based on that, Hansbrough should or as you say, "deserves" to be NPOY.

I am not trying to comment as much on whether his argument in favor of love is good or bad b/c he is arguing points that seem moot to me. This efficiency and pace of play stuff is meaningless to me b/c its meaningless to the voters.

I do understand why you think I am confusing the two opinions, but I'm trying to say that most people who are arguing about B (which player deserves to win) are arguing about what criteria should count and how to weight the different factors. I am saying thats a separate argument. I am using the aforementioned criteria that the voters will use to say 1) who deserves to win (based on that criteria) as well as 2) who the voters will pick. #1 is my personal analytical viewpoint based on an assessment of criteria (again, the same one the voters use..or at least I think they use) whereas #2 is trying to read the mind of voters.



Hate to break it to ya, but the average elapsed time before you enter the bonus isn't a stat that is kept officially and more importantly it isn't a metric most people use (and it would be ridiculous to expect people to monitor that individually)

That's the POINT of his article. He's trying to educate the voters. The voters vote on things based on antiquated notions of performance. As such, he's writing this article to try to move things toward a more educated approach.

Voters are going to vote for Hansbrough. That's obvious. But his point is that, if voters voted based on performance (not hype and outside factors), the award should go to Love.

SilkyJ
03-12-2008, 04:23 PM
That's the POINT of his article.

Fair enough. As I said, I even agree with some of the things he said.



But his point is that, if voters voted based on performance (not hype and outside factors), the award should go to Love.

Again, this all depends on your definition of "performance" and what variables factor into your evaluation. In the writer's definition he factors in efficiency/pace of play/etc. but not everyone factors those things into their evaluation of "performance" and thats part of MY point. Just b/c you call it antiquated doesn't make it right or wrong. What it is is "simple." The Big 3 stats (pts, rebs, asts) have always been the big stats and they are easy to monitor.

And at the end of the day guys, tyler scores 24ppg to Love's 18ppg (and I already mentioned that the other significant factors are pretty much a wash, imo). Thats a significant difference and PPG is obviously the most looked at and heavily weighted stat for basketball players. Shelden averaged 18/game. JJ averaged 24. Think about that. If thats an antiquated viewpoint, then fine, but basketball is still about outscoring your opponent so PPG is kinda important.

wumhenry
03-12-2008, 05:13 PM
Hate to break it to ya, but the average elapsed time before you enter the bonus isn't a stat that is kept officially and more importantly it isn't a metric most people use (and it would be ridiculous to expect people to monitor that individually)
Number of foul shots taken IS tracked, however, and is a pretty good gauge of the extent to which a player gets opponents into foul trouble.

Wander
03-12-2008, 05:36 PM
What agenda would that be? They posted those stats to support this line in the article: "It's taken Hansbrough three seasons to become the weapon on offense that Love already is."


But what does it matter? The award is about this season - I don't think it should be relevant what these guys did in the past or how long it took them to get there. And the agenda that I refer to is that they want to promote their rating systems. That's nothing awful.



Note that Love played the early part of this season without HIS point guard, Darren Collison, too.


Yeah, I know. And Love played well in that stretch. But he had a much better backup than Quentin Thomas and played much worse competition.



The article is a good article for what it is -- a statistical comparison between Love and Hansbrough.

Oh, I don't think it's a bad article, and I don't think that Hansbrough is so far above Love, Beasley, Lopez, and whoever that he's the only reasonable choice to vote for an NPOY award. I just don't agree with their conclusion.

Troublemaker
03-12-2008, 05:39 PM
I am critical of the argument that Kevin Love should be NPOY.

Should is the key word b/c different people have different views of what should count in the voting, but I think that's another argument for another time.

What does count is all the stuff I mentioned earlier and so based on that, Hansbrough should or as you say, "deserves" to be NPOY.

I am not trying to comment as much on whether his argument in favor of love is good or bad b/c he is arguing points that seem moot to me. This efficiency and pace of play stuff is meaningless to me b/c its meaningless to the voters.

I do understand why you think I am confusing the two opinions, but I'm trying to say that most people who are arguing about B (which player deserves to win) are arguing about what criteria should count and how to weight the different factors. I am saying thats a separate argument. I am using the aforementioned criteria that the voters will use to say 1) who deserves to win (based on that criteria) as well as 2) who the voters will pick. #1 is my personal analytical viewpoint based on an assessment of criteria (again, the same one the voters use..or at least I think they use) whereas #2 is trying to read the mind of voters.


But the author already acknowledged up front that his methods of evaluation will not be used by voters. You re-pointing that out seems redundant, and you being critical of the article on that basis seems irrelevant to the article.

Wander
03-12-2008, 05:42 PM
POY should go to a complete player

Hansborough is not that. he has never truly impressed me becasue of this.

Was JJ a complete player? No, but he was the best at what he did and he did exactly what his team needed to do, and I think definitely deserved his POY awards. You can be the best player in the country without being an elite defender.

Troublemaker
03-12-2008, 05:53 PM
But what does it matter? The award is about this season - I don't think it should be relevant what these guys did in the past or how long it took them to get there. And the agenda that I refer to is that they want to promote their rating systems. That's nothing awful.


I don't think the author ever claimed that line was relevant to his conclusion. I interpreted the line as an "fyi" or side-note kind of thing, something writers are prone to include when writing long articles. Ultimately, his argument for Love for NPOY was based solely on this season's stats, and it's a valid argument.

I agree that Basketball Prospectus tries to promote efficiency stats. But that doesn't predispose them to a bias against Hansbrough; it just so happens that in this discussion, Love has the advantage over Hansbrough in those efficiency stats. But if Hansbrough had the advantage, I would expect the Prospectus to promote HIM as NPOY. So I agree that the agenda is not bad and irrelevant with regard to bias towards one player or another.



Oh, I don't think it's a bad article, and I don't think that Hansbrough is so far above Love, Beasley, Lopez, and whoever that he's the only reasonable choice to vote for an NPOY award. I just don't agree with their conclusion.

And that's fair. And I happen to agree, as Hansbrough would get my vote for NPOY as well. My only objection was to your previous characterization of the author.

socaldukie
03-12-2008, 05:53 PM
Save for the fact it would be in the final four I would love to see these 2 guys and teams go head to head. Talk about an intense matchup.

BigTedder
03-12-2008, 10:58 PM
article (http://www.basketballprospectus.com/article.php?articleid=232)

Thoughts?

sooooooo, does that mean he thinks Love is better? I couldnt tell...the article was so subtle.

sandinmyshoes
03-13-2008, 06:03 AM
I think the fact that a substantial number of Duke fans are defending the choice of a UNC player as NPOY is more telling by far than and contortion of stats.

Duvall
03-13-2008, 07:29 AM
I think the fact that a substantial number of Duke fans are defending the choice of a UNC player as NPOY is more telling by far than and contortion of stats.

Yeah, it tells us that they've watched thirty UNC games this year.

mus074
03-13-2008, 08:26 AM
seems like a silly argument to me. 18 & 10 ain't 24 & 10 and the other stuff is a wash, and if anything is in favor of hans: (i.e. they both play for top teams so thats a wash, but hansbrough stepped up his game when lawson went out and carried the team...add in the fact that hansbrough is a junior and has done this for 3 straight seasons now, and its not even close)

the real argument is between Hansbrough and Beasley, and I would have given it to beasley a month ago, but the way hans carried his team w/o lawson, I have to give it to Hans now...

The whole point of tempo-free stats is to take the number of possessions out of the equation. UNC plays about 74.5 possessions per game and UCLA 65. That's why Love's %age numbers are at least as good, if not better. I agree that the numbers favor Love.

moonpie23
03-13-2008, 08:34 AM
All of us get to watch Tyler a lot more than other folks around the nation. I've tried to catch as many UCLA, Kansas, KS, Memphis, Tx, Louisville, as possible. Of course, I don't see as many of the other players as I do ACC players, but I've got to give it to Tyler. (cleaning the yack off my lip after saying that)


However, Hansbrough will be a buried "interesting stat" if he can't make a final four or win a championship.

Troublemaker
03-13-2008, 08:42 AM
I think the fact that a substantial number of Duke fans are defending the choice of a UNC player as NPOY is more telling by far than and contortion of stats.

The stats aren't contorted. Actually I'm not sure what you mean by that. Also, I disagree that 4 or 5 Duke fans supporting Hansbrough is telling. Or if it IS telling, I don't think it is telling us anything more significant than "Duke fans watch lots of UNC games."

sandinmyshoes
03-13-2008, 08:54 AM
The stats aren't contorted. Actually I'm not sure what you mean by that. Also, I disagree that 4 or 5 Duke fans supporting Hansbrough is telling. Or if it IS telling, I don't think it is telling us anything more significant than "Duke fans watch lots of UNC games."

Perhaps "contorted" is not the correct word. Let me say that I found their stats selective. And their use of Hansbrough's stats from his first and second year an obvious sign of an agenda or bias. As others have pointed out, what do they have to do with this year's award? Why are they introducing something that is irrelevant?

And as for the number of Duke fans who think Hansbrough is worthy of the NPOY, four or five on this thread, from perhaps a dozen or so is a pretty substantial number. Heck, any number of Duke fans willing to concede something like this is telling, and it would be astoundingly so if UNC fans were doing it in reverse.

It doesn't mean it is a slam dunk that the award should go to Hansbrough. But it is evidence, unless you think basketball is ONLY about numbers. I think most of us, as Duke fans, are well aware of the all important intangibles. Our teams often thrive on those.

Troublemaker
03-13-2008, 09:15 AM
Perhaps "contorted" is not the correct word. Let me say that I found their stats selective. And their use of Hansbrough's stats from his first and second year an obvious sign of an agenda or bias. As others have pointed out, what do they have to do with this year's award? Why are they introducing something that is irrelevant?

As I explained above, the author never claimed the previous seasons' stats to be relevant to his conclusion, which was based only on this season's stats. Why does every single word in a long article need to be relevant to his topic statement? Sometimes writers provide us with an aside that they believe the readers will find to be interesting (and I DID find that aside to be interesting). Sometimes they crack a joke. How is that a sign of agenda or bias?

Regardless, as I explained above, even if there IS an agenda, why would that agenda include a bias against Hansbrough? I think if the author had concluded that Hansbrough's efficiency stats were better than Love, then he would support Hansbrough for NPOY. That Hansbrough comes out on the short end of those stats is not a matter of bias. It just is what it is.



And as for the number of Duke fans who think Hansbrough is worthy of the NPOY, four or five on this thread, from perhaps a dozen or so is a pretty substantial number. Heck, any number of Duke fans willing to concede something like this is telling, and it would be astoundingly so if UNC fans were doing it in reverse.

It doesn't mean it is a slam dunk that the award should go to Hansbrough. But it is evidence, unless you think basketball is ONLY about numbers. I think most of us, as Duke fans, are well aware of the all important intangibles. Our teams often thrive on those.

No, it's not telling. I'm being very strict here but obviously of all the evidence in support of Hansbrough, one of the weakest and most ridiculous would be that 4 or 5 Duke fans out of 12 on a random thread on a random message board support Hansbrough for NPOY. It's not really evidence of anything. And even if it were 400,000 Duke fans out of 1.2 million Duke fans, I'm not sure it's indicative of anything more than Duke fans watch lots of UNC games and so we're more exposed to Hansbrough than to other candidates.

As I mentioned above, I support Hansbrough for NPOY. But that doesn't mean I believe the Prospectus author has a bias against Hansbrough (or for Love) or that this thread is telling of anything.

sandinmyshoes
03-13-2008, 09:46 AM
As I explained above, the author never claimed the previous seasons' stats to be relevant to his conclusion, which was based only on this season's stats. Why does every single word in a long article need to be relevant to his topic statement? Sometimes writers provide us with an aside that they believe the readers will find to be interesting (and I DID find that aside to be interesting). Sometimes they crack a joke. How is that a sign of agenda or bias?

Regardless, as I explained above, even if there IS an agenda, why would that agenda include a bias against Hansbrough? I think if the author had concluded that Hansbrough's efficiency stats were better than Love, then he would support Hansbrough for NPOY. That Hansbrough comes out on the short end of those stats is not a matter of bias. It just is what it is.



No, it's not telling. I'm being very strict here but obviously of all the evidence in support of Hansbrough, one of the weakest and most ridiculous would be that 4 or 5 Duke fans out of 12 on a random thread on a random message board support Hansbrough for NPOY. It's not really evidence of anything. And even if it were 400,000 Duke fans out of 1.2 million Duke fans, I'm not sure it's indicative of anything more than Duke fans watch lots of UNC games and so we're more exposed to Hansbrough than to other candidates.

As I mentioned above, I support Hansbrough for NPOY. But that doesn't mean I believe the Prospectus author has a bias against Hansbrough (or for Love) or that this thread is telling of anything.

Ah, then what we have here is a disagreement on many points between thee and me. In my book, Duke fans overcoming their bias against a UNC player IS indicitative of how much that UNC player impacts the game.

As for the bias of the author, why argue for objective use of stats, but then include irrelevant stats?

Troublemaker
03-13-2008, 09:55 AM
Ah, then what we have here is a disagreement on many points between thee and me. In my book, Duke fans overcoming their bias against a UNC player IS indicitative of how much that UNC player impacts the game.

...or that Duke fans are more exposed to Hansbrough than to other candidates, if you're comparing them. No argument from me that Hansbrough makes an impact, though. That's obvious.



As for the bias of the author, why argue for objective use of stats, but then include irrelevant stats?

Been explained.

calltheobvious
03-13-2008, 12:07 PM
Again, this all depends on your definition of "performance" and what variables factor into your evaluation. In the writer's definition he factors in efficiency/pace of play/etc. but not everyone factors those things into their evaluation of "performance" and thats part of MY point. Just b/c you call it antiquated doesn't make it right or wrong. What it is is "simple." The Big 3 stats (pts, rebs, asts) have always been the big stats and they are easy to monitor.

I don't call the practice of not using tempo-free stats "simple," I call it "absurd." And I will call it "wrong," if by "right," you mean using a set of statistics that can give us the most accurate picture possible of what's going on so that comparisons become intelligible.

How can you argue that ignoring tempo is okay? What if Grinnell jumped to DI tomorrow and continued their style with the same success? Would you vote a Grinnell player worthy of NPOY solely because he averaged 34.8 ppg, 9.2 rpg, and 8.7 apg? Of course not, because you'd realize that the numbers were inflated by the number of possessions.




And at the end of the day guys, tyler scores 24ppg to Love's 18ppg (and I already mentioned that the other significant factors are pretty much a wash, imo). Thats a significant difference and PPG is obviously the most looked at and heavily weighted stat for basketball players. Shelden averaged 18/game. JJ averaged 24. Think about that. If thats an antiquated viewpoint, then fine, but basketball is still about outscoring your opponent so PPG is kinda important.

Seriously, when you discount for tempo, it's not a significant difference. And the other stuff is a wash? Let's say you get to pick Hansbrough or Love for your team. You know with certainty that Love is going to get the rebound a much higher percentage of the time the ball comes off the rim than Hansbrough will. You also know that he's going to find other players for baskets more often, and block a lot more shots. All that stuff's irrelevant? Please don't be the GM of my team.

As for PPG being the most heavily weighted stat, you'd get not one whit of disagreement from the BP writer. The point that Pomery makes seriously, and www.firejoemorgan.com makes comically, is that this is an unbelievably parochial way to look at things, especially given all of the superior metrics we have available now.

wumhenry
03-13-2008, 12:50 PM
I don't call the practice of not using tempo-free stats "simple," I call it "absurd." And I will call it "wrong," if by "right," you mean using a set of statistics that can give us the most accurate picture possible of what's going on so that comparisons become intelligible. How can you argue that ignoring tempo is okay?
Why do you ignore the point made in #27?

calltheobvious
03-13-2008, 01:10 PM
Why do you ignore the point made in #27?

Didn't mean to. Here's my response to your point that the validity of temp-free stats assume Love's ability to play at a higher tempo.

I think this question turns on the issue of framing. The way you pose the question, I have to justify the idea that Love could play equally well at a quicker pace. But what if the tables are turned and you have to assess what Hansbrough's numbers would look like with 11 fewer possessions per game? After all, Hansbrough gets a statistically significant number of points because of his speed and endurance, and if UNC slowed down the pace to UCLA's level, the impact might be more than linear.

Ultimately, players and teams play how they play. Tempo-free stats are a way to try to assess the impact of players at the margins of individual possessions, and I think that's the most complete way to assess the picture.

Just curious, but would you feel as strongly if TH's numbers were deflated by 5.5 possessions per game and Love's were inflated by the same factor?

wumhenry
03-13-2008, 01:43 PM
Here's my response to your point that the validity of temp-free stats assume Love's ability to play at a higher tempo.

I think this question turns on the issue of framing. The way you pose the question, I have to justify the idea that Love could play equally well at a quicker pace. But what if the tables are turned and you have to assess what Hansbrough's numbers would look like with 11 fewer possessions per game? After all, Hansbrough gets a statistically significant number of points because of his speed and endurance, and if UNC slowed down the pace to UCLA's level, the impact might be more than linear.
Sure, it stands to reason that Hansbrough's PPG would be lower if UNC played at UCLA's slower pace. But it's not self-evident that Love's PPG would be as high as, or higher than, TH's if UCLA played at UNC's pace. So it seems to me that your tempo-adjusted statistics are worthless in the absence of a convincing reason to assume that Love could play at UNC's pace with no loss of efficiency.

Troublemaker
03-13-2008, 02:21 PM
So it seems to me that your tempo-adjusted statistics are worthless in the absence of a convincing reason to assume that Love could play at UNC's pace with no loss of efficiency.

Worthless? Absolutely not. Tempo-free stats are better indicators than non-tempo-free stats. But your point was indeed a good counterpoint to the article. Keep in mind that there's a counterpoint to your counterpoint as well. Does Hansbrough's efficiency drop if he is forced to play at Love's pace? One of Hansbrough's biggest strengths is arguably his conditioning, and a slower pace would reduce the advantage that his superior conditioning gives him over opposing big men, thereby perhaps causing a decline in his efficiency stats if he were to play at Love's pace.

tbyers11
03-13-2008, 02:23 PM
Sure, it stands to reason that Hansbrough's PPG would be lower if UNC played at UCLA's slower pace. But it's not self-evident that Love's PPG would be as high as, or higher than, TH's if UCLA played at UNC's pace. So it seems to me that your tempo-adjusted statistics are worthless in the absence of a convincing reason to assume that Love could play at UNC's pace with no loss of efficiency.

In my opinion, you are overestimating the effect that UNC's fast pace would have on a particular player from a slower paced team. The difference (according to Ken Pom (http://kenpom.com/stats.php)) is 11 possessions over a 40 minute game. Basically, UNC gets slightly more than 1 extra possession every 4 minutes than UCLA. So if UCLA ran one extra fast break every 4 minutes, they would roughly have an equivalent amount of possessions/game.

Kevin Love is definitely not in as good of shape as Tyler Hansbrough, but I don't think that type of increase in pace would adversely affect him much and his lesser conditioning wouldn't keep him from posting numbers at his current pace. While UNC plays fast, they do not play a non stop full-court pressing scheme like some of Nolan Richardson's old Arkansas teams or Pitino's old Kentucky teams.

bdh21
03-13-2008, 05:00 PM
Sure, it stands to reason that Hansbrough's PPG would be lower if UNC played at UCLA's slower pace. But it's not self-evident that Love's PPG would be as high as, or higher than, TH's if UCLA played at UNC's pace. So it seems to me that your tempo-adjusted statistics are worthless in the absence of a convincing reason to assume that Love could play at UNC's pace with no loss of efficiency.

Why is it relevant whether Love could play at a faster pace? We're not picking teams for a pick up game. UCLA and UNC aren't trading those two players for the tournament.

Tempo-free stats are just there to explain production within the context of the offense. And within the context of UCLA's offense Kevin Love is as productive as Hansbrough is within the context of UNC's offense. What's wrong with Ben Howland implementing a strategy that gives his team the best chance to win games even if it involves 11 fewer possessions per game than UNC?

calltheobvious
03-13-2008, 06:11 PM
Sure, it stands to reason that Hansbrough's PPG would be lower if UNC played at UCLA's slower pace. But it's not self-evident that Love's PPG would be as high as, or higher than, TH's if UCLA played at UNC's pace. So it seems to me that your tempo-adjusted statistics are worthless in the absence of a convincing reason to assume that Love could play at UNC's pace with no loss of efficiency.

Apparently I didn't make myself clear. Of course everyone agrees that TH's numbers would be lower with 11 fewer possessions. I'm saying that deflating his numbers by 11 possessions out of an "average" UNC game might actually underpredict the drop-off. In other words, I think there's an increasing marginal return to Hansbrough on Carolina possessions. He's able to get fast-break points partly because his opponents aren't as fit as he is. If I'm right--and I'm not certain I am, I'm just certain that you haven't proved I'm not--Hansbrough does not get short-changed in the tempo-free discussion.

killerleft
03-13-2008, 06:51 PM
If Hansbrough is more fit than Love, isn't that just another feather in his NPOY hat? If they play head-to-head wouldn't Hansbrough have a built-in advantage?

I confess that I have seen Love play only a couple of times. But this point-counterpoint stuff can be argued forever.

Troublemaker
03-13-2008, 06:55 PM
If Hansbrough is more fit than Love, isn't that just another feather in his NPOY hat? If they play head-to-head wouldn't Hansbrough have a built-in advantage?

I confess that I have seen Love play only a couple of times. But this point-counterpoint stuff can be argued forever.

Conditioning is indeed part of being a good basketball player. But it's only one part of many, many parts constituting the whole. Love could still be a better basketball player than Hansbrough despite being less fit (IF he's even less fit).

killerleft
03-13-2008, 08:19 PM
Conditioning is indeed part of being a good basketball player. But it's only one part of many, many parts constituting the whole. Love could still be a better basketball player than Hansbrough despite being less fit (IF he's even less fit).

Exactly. Then again, UCLA may play slower because Love becomes less effective when the pace is fast :<) . The only evidence is that Hansbrough thrives during a fast-paced game, and UCLA coaches seem to feel (obviously) that the slower pace is better for their team.

Troublemaker
03-13-2008, 08:39 PM
Exactly. Then again, UCLA may play slower because Love becomes less effective when the pace is fast :<) . The only evidence is that Hansbrough thrives during a fast-paced game, and UCLA coaches seem to feel (obviously) that the slower pace is better for their team.

Right, and UNC plays fast because they feel that it is best for THEIR team. So, to those who question whether Love would be as efficient playing at UNC's pace, the flipside of that coin is to wonder whether Hansbrough would be as efficient playing at UCLA's pace. The tiger might outfight the shark on land but the shark might outfight the tiger in water.

Soooooo, for anyone that's really interested in finding out more (I'm not that guy), one thing they could do is to compare Love's efficiency in a sample of UCLA's fastest-paced games to Hansbrough's efficiency in a sample of UNC's slowest-paced games, and if these two different sets of pace data intersect like a Venn diagram, all the better. Although that kind of analysis would only add a little bit to the discussion, imo.

Again, I don't care enough about Love-vs-Hansbrough to investigate this myself. My hat is in this ring to argue against those that would criticize tempo-free statistics, the neutrality of the author, the personality of the author, etc etc. despite my own vote going to Hansbrough for NPOY.

ice-9
03-14-2008, 12:26 AM
In the discussion about differences in tempo...wouldn't a faster pace benefit guards and wings much more than bigs? If UCLA sped up their offense with 11 more fast breaks, won't it usually be the guards and wings who will have a larger proportion of those extra shots? Love's points per game may not actually increase in a "faster" tempo. Conversely, if UNC slowed their offense and didn't go for any fast breaks but played a pure half court game...Hansbrough would still get his share of shots despite playing in a "slower" tempo. The obvious example is someone like Shaq...his points per game doesn't actually increase when you put him on a super-fast offense like on the Phoenix Suns; if anything it actually went down.

Troublemaker
03-14-2008, 12:50 AM
In the discussion about differences in tempo...wouldn't a faster pace benefit guards and wings much more than bigs? If UCLA sped up their offense with 11 more fast breaks, won't it usually be the guards and wings who will have a larger proportion of those extra shots? Love's points per game may not actually increase in a "faster" tempo. Conversely, if UNC slowed their offense and didn't go for any fast breaks but played a pure half court game...Hansbrough would still get his share of shots despite playing in a "slower" tempo. The obvious example is someone like Shaq...his points per game doesn't actually increase when you put him on a super-fast offense like on the Phoenix Suns; if anything it actually went down.

Shaq's not a good example. In this discussion, we're talking about speeding up (or slowing down) the SAME team, with the same players in the same roles, just using more or fewer possessions. Shaq, on the other hand, went to a completely DIFFERENT team and is now surrounded by different teammates in different roles where he is now the 4th or 5th option on the Suns instead of the 2nd option on the Heat (and besides, his rebounding has increased significantly [which, in itself, doesn't really mean much at all, either]). I wouldn't get too caught up in this comparison of pace. It's not significant in determining how good a player is.

juise
03-14-2008, 11:25 AM
ESPN's experts weigh in on the Hansbrough/Beasley debate (http://sports.espn.go.com/ncb/news/story?id=3280211).

miramar
03-14-2008, 04:26 PM
Give him the POY, hang up his jersey, just get him out of here. I have reservations about a center who can't block shots or play much defense for that matter, but Duke doesn't match up well with him (and won't until Z develops further) so I hope he thinks he has nothing left to prove in Chapel Hill.

wumhenry
03-15-2008, 02:49 PM
He sure helped his case with that shot at the buzzer in the ACC Tournament semi!