Shot Distance, Offensive Efficiency, & Wins

Andre Khatchaturian —  August 1, 2013

This year in the NBA, there were over 201,000 field goals attempted from a wide variety of distances on the court. The quality of all of those shots taken was dependent on several factors such as whether the shot was contested or not, the type of play ran by the coach, the time remaining on the shot clock, and of course the distance of the shot.

Shot distance turns out to be an extremely important indicator whether a shot will be successful or not. The table below illustrates the expected values of shots from different ranges based on the league average from those distances:

Screen Shot 2013 07 30 at 2.14.07 PM

Shots in the interior (within 8 feet from the rim) are most successful at 55.3%, giving those shots an expected value of 1.11 points. The percentages sharply decline the farther we get from the hoop as the field goal percentage for mid-range jumpers falls below 40 percent. When we go beyond the arc, the percentage dips to 36%. However, since threes have a point value of three, the expected value for threes is 1.08 points per shot, making it a fairly efficient shot.

With this line of logic, one may believe that teams that take the most shots from within eight feet and from three-point land would be the most successful because they are taking higher quality shots. It turns that this isn’t exactly the case, though.

After running a regression between the distribution of shots from each distance range with intervals of 8 feet (less than 8 feet, 8-16 feet, 16-24 feet, and greater than 24 feet) with wins, a weak correlation was found and no specific distance range was statistically significant. In other words, just because teams took more efficient shots, it didn’t necessarily help them win more games.

The Lakers are a great example. 72.7% of all Lakers shots came from three point land or from within eight feet. This was the fourth highest percentage in the league behind the Rockets, Nuggets, and Pistons. With Dwight Howard in the middle (he took the second most shot attempts from <8 feet) and Metta World Peace jacking up threes night and day (16th in the NBA in three point attempts), it’s no surprise that the Lakers are high on top of this list. They definitely took plenty of quality shots in terms of shot distance, but only managed to win 45 games.

The problem? The Lakers only made 47.5% of their shots from those two distance ranges – 18th best in the league. It turns out that success isn’t based on how many shots a team takes from these shot ranges, but how efficient they are with those shots. In fact, having variety is good in terms of shot selection. It creates unpredictability. As long as a team makes the important shots from beyond the arc and close to the basket, they will maximize their chances of winning games. That being said, we shouldn’t completely discount shot frequency. Regression analysis between offensive efficiency rating and the frequency of shots from different ranges showed that shots from the efficient ranges were statistically significant. When teams took more quality shots, they had a higher offensive efficiency. There’s a strong positive correlation between OEff Rating with wins so one can say that there is an implied correlation between the frequency of shots taken from efficient ranges with wins.

In terms of a direct (and stronger) correlation, though, FG% from the efficient ranges was all that mattered. In fact, after running a regression between success of shots from various ranges (less than 8 feet, 8-16 feet, 16-24 feet, and 24+ feet) and wins, only the ‘less than 8 feet’ range and ‘24+ feet’ range were statistically significant. This means that success in those ranges (let’s call them the efficient ranges) was correlated with wins.

For instance, 67.3% of Miami’s shots came from the two efficient ranges (12th highest), but they were the most efficient team making 53.3% of their shots from those distances.

Here’s a breakdown. On the left is the list of the ten teams who most frequently took their shots from the efficient ranges. On the right is the success they had in those ranges:

Screen Shot 2013 07 30 at 3.01.41 PM

As you can see on the table to the right, the top nine teams that were most successful from the efficient ranges had at least a .500 record. While we see several teams on both lists, it should be clear that their success was correlated stronger with their success in the efficient ranges rather than the frequency of their shots from those distances. For example, the Rockets may have taken more efficient shots than the Nuggets, but they weren’t as successful, which may be related to why they won 12 fewer games.

What about on the defensive side of the ball? Surely if a team is good at defending shots from the efficient ranges, they will be successful, too, right? The Memphis Grizzlies and Indiana Pacers ranked 24th and 25th, respectively, in terms of field goal percentage from the 0-8 feet and three point land. However, they were both stout defensive teams throughout the season from those distances.

When conducting the same regression for OppFG% in the efficient zones with wins, we see that only shots defended from 0-8 feet were statistically significant. This means that a team’s performance defensively in this range was correlated with wins. Sure enough, from the nine teams with the lowest OppFG% in this range, eight of them made the playoffs. Indiana and Memphis were 1st and 8th, respectively. We also see an extremely strong correlation between the frequency of shots allowed from the efficient zones with defensive efficiency rating. In other words, teams that allowed fewer shots from the efficient zones didn’t necessarily win more games, but they had a lower defensive efficiency rating. There is a strong correlation between defensive efficiency rating with wins, so there is in fact an implied correlation between the frequency of shots allowed from different zones with wins.

The Lakers, despite having Dwight Howard in the paint, were 21st in terms of OppFG% on shots between 0 and 8 feet at 56.4%. This was the third highest percentage among all playoff teams.

Even more interestingly, 42.2% of shots the Lakers faced came from within 0-8 feet – 11th lowest in the league. Without Dwight in the lineup, Orlando faced FEWER shots from within that very range (they were 7th.) One would think having Dwight in the interior would force teams to take farther shots because of his presence, but that wasn’t the case this year with the Lakers.

So did having Dwight in the paint really help the Lakers defensively? It’ll be interesting to see how those numbers change this year.

The Lakers were a middle of the pack team in terms of making and defending efficient shots. As a result, they were a middle of the pack team overall.

The prospects of the Lakers improving these figures are questionable. Adding Jordan Farmar and Nick Young doesn’t really put the Lakers over the top in terms of three-point efficiency. They can shoot the three ball but they’re not amazing.

However, the departure of MWP and a healthy Nash (who is a 42% life time three point threat) will make the Lakers a more efficient three point shooting team (that is if Nick Young doesn’t reprise the role of MWP and jack up crazy threes all season.)

In terms of interior offense, losing Dwight will definitely hurt. He made 60 percent of his shots from within 0-8 feet and this means that Chris Kaman, Pau Gasol and Jordan Hill will really have to step up to fill in his shoes. Kobe has shown that he can still drive in the lane and take quality shots from close range, but there are many question marks surrounding his injury.

Then again, perhaps the unpredictability that will come with not having Howard and World Peace in the lineup will help the Lakers. Let’s face it – the team took many shots from within 0-8 feet and another chunk from beyond the arc. One of the biggest criticisms against the Lakers last year was their spacing and lack of chemistry. If spacing and chemistry don’t exist, shot quality is going to be poor. These are all things that can be fixed with a full training camp and inputting system guys that fit D’Antoni’s style. D’Antoni will have the luxury of having a full training camp and offseason this year and the Lakers front office has definitely acquired numerous players that will probably fit well in D’Antoni’s offense. It will definitely be an interesting aspect of the game to observe in the 2013-14 season.

Finally, it should be crucial to note that there are obviously a variety of other factors that are correlated with a team’s chances of winning a game. Shot distance is only one of them. That being said, the numbers show that shooting and defending well from specific distance ranges effect a team’s chances of winning and the Lakers will have to be more efficient from beyond the arc and from close range if they’re going to shock the basketball world and be a contender in the West.

Andre Khatchaturian

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37 responses to Shot Distance, Offensive Efficiency, & Wins

  1. These numbers would be a great deal more helpful if one would further differentiate within the two most successful areas, specifically:

    1. less than 8 feet should be divided into dunks/uncontested layups versus other shots. Once that’s done, perhaps we would see that a 6′ shot is not really all that effective after all…. from the eyeball test, to use an extreme example, there certainly is a difference in effectiveness between a DFish teardrop over a big (usually an airball) and LBJ throwing one down on the break.

    2. 3PT shots should be divided into those shots that are at least likely within the context of an offense versus those which are not (half point heaves at the end of quarters, bigs or other non-perimeter shooters jacking up 3 pointers to beat the shot clock, etc.).

    without these refinements, particularly the first one, it’s really hard to draw useful conclusions (other than something useless like teams should try to dunk a lot more).

  2. Andre Khatchaturian August 1, 2013 at 4:33 pm

    Lil Pau –

    1) That would be a more comprehensive study. I completely agree. But the basic premise is that with regards to two pointers, the closer you are, the more successful (not just in terms of FG% but also in terms of wins as the study demonstrated) you’re going to be on average.

    2) Half court heaves are a very small percentage of a teams total shots. On average, teams take about 10-20 half court heaves in the season. As far as jacking up 3s to beat the shot clock, I believe those should be included because at the end of the day, the team wasn’t able to get off a high quality shot. That was their shot. An interesting study would be to see if the number of seconds elapsed in the shot clock effects a team’s OEff Rating.

  3. lil pau: “other than something useless like teams should try to dunk a lot more” I understand your point, however that conclusion is far from useless. If you wanted to dunk more, you would get guys like LeBron (2), Shaq (4) , MJ (6) , Kareem (6) , and Wilt (2). Please see the comments from a few posters a couple of threads back about talent. And then write an e-mail to Mitch telling him to go get one of those guys. Sad reality – we just had one and I have a feeling he is going to do a lot of dunking next year and be up in the leaders in FG%.

  4. Andre,

    Thanks for the response. I’ll take your points in reverse order:

    Is that verified, only 10-20 half-court heaves per season per team?! If you tell me it is, I’ll take your word for it, but off the top of my head, one would think 4 quarters * 50 percent of the time that the team ends up with the ball at the end of the quarter * 82 games = 164 regular season heave opportunities, discounting of course when the ball goes in the net with a second or less (so no heave) or I suppose when the ball is in the hands of that kind of player who is more concerned about his FG% than winning the game (we’ve all seen these guys, some of them in p&g). in addition, there must be a couple of plays a year in which the ball is knocked into the backcourt with just a few seconds left on the shotclock (resulting in a midquarter backcourt heave), furthering bolstering the total. as a result, i must say those numbers just don’t seem right to me… that said, I do agree with your point arguing for the statistical relevance of late shot-clock attempts (those forced by good D or poor O, as opposed to ‘hail marys’).

    As for the first point, I still would argue that teams that dunk a lot in transition (esp mia, but also teams like the clips) or get layups in transition (den of last year) are in a totally different ballpark than those that end up with, say, the kinds of close-range shots that chris kamen is going to take this year (or that josh smith takes, or KG, etc– ie., jumpshots within 8′, but pretty close to 8′). & obviously, dunks are better than, say, ty lawson or brandon jennings attacking.

    that said, in defense of your argument, PJ himself said ‘the goal of an offense is to get the ball as close to the basket as possible’, so what do I know?

  5. You may want to reverse the > signs in your tables to < so they match your text. These data also suggest that you need players finding out where behind the 3 point line they can make 36% of their shots and what kind of close shots you need to hit 55%. The same idea with any of the 2 point shots only where and what kind of shot can each player make to reach say 50% instead of 39%. Maybe improving the quality of the mid-range 2 point shots would affect outcome more since they are the lowest expected value shots.

  6. I have but the one comment, to wit, where are you accounting for FTM/FTA attempted?

    I ask for two reasons:

    (1) If Nash and Kobe were fouled in the act of shooting at 16 feet, that would be the best shot the Lakers could hope to take;

    (2) since you mentioned Pau, sure, his FG% within 8 feet won’t be Dwight’s, but his FT on fouled shots in that range might make him Dwight’s better.

    By the way, you didn’t need to run a regression analysis to prove the point that the teams that better defend against the highest FG% shots should win more games.

    To relate all of that together, the Lakers should have Kobe and Nash fouled in the act of shooting on every possession and on the other end, defend to the bitter end 8 and in, and the 3 PT line as well, but don’t foul a damn soul in between.

  7. lil pau – take a look at stats.nba.com and look at the Team Shots section. Half Court shots have their own category and you’ll see that teams generally take between 10-20 per year.

    As for the close range shots, once again I think even in transition if you get off a close range shot, that’s a win. It means your’e doing something right. How many times have we seen teams in transition airmail a three? (ahem…Mr. Bryant that’s you) Also, I looked it up on MySynergySports.com, a team like Denver who was on transition A LOT last year, only had 18% of their plays as transition plays. That’s another 82% of plays that were set plays. For the Lakers, only 10% of their plays were on transition. So it’s definitely just a small percentage.

    Baylor Fan -
    Good call on the signs. My bad. I feel like an idiot.

  8. Andre Khatchaturian August 1, 2013 at 10:43 pm

    I don’t know why it said Anonymous for my last post but that’s me responding to lil pau and baylor fan.

    Also, Slappy, a regression is necessary to see which distance ranges effect win total. You are correct in that FTM and FTA aren’t recorded in this study, but since all fouls on the act of shooting result in a free throw, why should they be? The point of this study is to strip everything down and look at shot selection. Which shots are most efficient and does it matter if teams are taking more efficient shots?

  9. Great post. Obviously, the stats are incomplete but the kind of comprehensive study we’re all asking for is the work of scouts/GM’s/stats gurus throughout the league. Let’s just be glad that Andre actually took the time to present us these stats and make a conclusion out of it (doesn’t matter if you shoot a lot at the rim or from the 3pt line, all it matters is how efficient you are when taking those shots and preventing them).

    This only means one thing: after you consider the stats, one must take into account the way of getting those shots. That’s where a coach’s tactical knowledge and a player’s ability comes into play. For instance, if Dwight Howard gets the ball in the low block to go one-on-one against Roy Hibbert, he’ll have a certain FG% and eFG% (considering those FT’s). Now, I would like to compare the shot stats from within 8 feet between last year’s Lakers and Sloan’s version of the Utah Jazz. Most of the shots within 8 feet with those Jazz teams came from: backdoor cuts, 1-4 pick’n roll and offensive rebounds. Maybe those Jazz teams had a higher % from within 8 feet but the point is that stats only give you the end result. It’s the way to achieve that end result that matters and I suppose that’s what lil pau meant…

  10. Andre: Re FTA/FTM, because (a) some are fouled more than others and (b) some are better FT shooters than others. Re the regression, again, stands to reason that the closer you are to the hoop, the greater the chance of the ball going in. So those who take and make more near the rim are more likely to win. The converse would be that those teams that deny the near rim and/or challenge such shots better than some others, stand a better chance of winning. It’s not one of those things concerning my and your lying eyes, so we can skip the regression. I should have added the qualifier though, i.e., all other things being equal, since a poor offensive team might still lose more than some others, even though they defend better at 8 feet and in. By the way, why I was always on Shaq’s side in the whole who should be the primo option feud. Almost forgot, but so you get what I mean by the FTA/FTM, Kobe’s FG% is nothing special. Never has been. What makes him stand out is the number of times he gets to the line and his corresponding FT%. And that’s when we’ll know when he’s gone from great to just another shooter, when he doesn’t get to the line in his usual fashion. For one more almost forgot, to give you another answer of why FT should be factored, well, how many times is the 3 PT shooter fouled? So to evaluate the mid-range shot, versus the 3 PT shot, you need to include all those mid-range shots that afforded the player the chance to make FT. As you can imagine, on that basis, for everyone but Dwight, 8 and in is truly lethal, since not only is the FG% high, but if you can also hit your FT…

  11. Someone I guess should add context to these numbers. There is a difference between LeBron shooting a lay up and Derek Fisher shooting a lay up. Lebrons shot in the paint is a high percentage shot. Fishers shot in the paint is the lowest percentage shot in the history of western civilization.

    There is a difference between a Miami Heat three point shot and a Lakers three point shot. A Miami heat three point shot is wide open off a double team of LeBron and shot by Ray Allen or Mike Miller. A lakers three point shot comes from ball movement and sometimes a soft double (nobody on the Lakers until Dwight in the playoffs could draw a double team) and is taken by Kobe (average three point shooter) or MWP (average three point shooter). Not every three point shot is created equal. Not every lay up is created equal.

  12. So Aaron – once again – it is about talent. If you have a LeBron James or a Magic Johnson, then they drive the lane and create wide open jumpers and 3 pointers for the shooters. They also finish well at the rim. It also helps to have a Kareem or a Chris Bosh to dump the ball off to in case you need a bail out. So see it is a simple strategy. Go out and sign the best guy in the league, then surround him with a couple of other stars and some shooters and voila – banners. Being a GM is easy : )
    PS: I am still with your dream plan, because nobody has come up with better (and I am not expecting them to).

  13. I think “too much” is being put into the analytics of things. While I recognize that this is an integral part of modern basketball, it remains that the players are the ones that take them and you can only coach it so much to affect your play.

    To be more specific, I don’t think a player should decline an open 18-footer and would be required to pass it off to a teammate who is supposed to take a well-defended/covered corner three. I don’t think its ideal to pass it inside if Kwame Brown is within 8 feet of the basket if you have say Stephen Curry waiting for an open 25-footer.

    All in all, we should not remove the feel of the game aspect of basketball. In a vacuum, sure its fun to look at these numbers to analyze and make correlations. But in the real world, talent matters. Decisions are being made on the fly. Passes are structured but the player ultimately decides to pass or shoot. I guess if you’re Nick Young your 1st instinct would be the latter. Pun intended.

    For all the accuracy and how the modern basketball analytics has changed the basketball ideals, it remains that the basic principles of the “high percentage shot” to be the most efficient. I don’t have stats to back this up but its simply common sense. Of course a 25-foot 3-pointer is better than a 19-foot fadeaway jumpshot. But that also tackles the question of who: coz I would take Kobe’s off-balance-triple-teamed-19-footer over Metta’s 3-point brick.

    Again, I love how a set play is executed to perfection. But only if it creates the best possible shot within the offense. Not only because you have to play percentages all the time for a supposed better chance at winning.

    Basketball remains a physical and athletic game as supposed to it being robotic or mechanical.

  14. Robert… Ha. Yes. It’s always about talent. And yes… Nobody is talented enought to come up with a better plan than myself. But that’s only because the Lakers have thought about this all year and came up with the same plan. So of course nobody is going to come up with a better plan than the LA Lakers. It would defy odds ;)

  15. Harrington just got waved … any chance he comes to LA?

    3pt shooter, 6’9, can play the 3 or the 4, plays with grit …. looks like the kind of guy we need

  16. Andre Khatchaturian August 2, 2013 at 12:31 pm

    Aaron —

    I strongly believe that strategical differences and coaching philosophies are the reason why teams take more shots from up close or take more shots from three point land. That is the whole point of the study. Whatever the Miamis, Oklahoma Cities, and San Antonios of the league are doing is helping them get better looks from 3P and 0-8. They are probably getting better looks from 8-24 feet too but their success in those ranges doesn’t correlate with more wins or a higher OEff Rating. That’s all the study is saying – nothing more, nothing less.

    Slappy -

    Unfortunately, the type of information you are asking for is not readily available. I would have to watch every single NBA game from last season and only look at free throws that were caused by fouls in the act of shooting (you are forgetting that A LOT of free throws result from teams being in the penalty). Looking at it that way, I think the effect of your claim is negligible. Think about it – On average, NBA teams take 22.7 free throws per game. Assuming the average number of free throws an NBA player takes each time he takes a trip to the line is 2 (I know it’s probably a little less than that because And 1s happen far more frequently than getting fouled on a 3, but let’s just assume for argument’s sake that this number is 2), then 22.7 divided by 2 is 11.35. Let’s just round up to 12 – so there are on average 12 plays per game where a player gets fouled and has to shoot free throws. Now how many of those are in the ACT OF SHOOTING? From those 12 it’s maybe 8 that were in the act of shooting and that’s being generous – again, a lot of free throws result from teams being in the penalty and even intentional fouls late in games. Now from those 8 that resulted from act of shooting, how many of those were resulted from fouls in the mid-range? I’d say less than fouls that happened closer to the rim. There’s just more contact closer to the rim. The farther you go out, the chances of you getting fouled on a shot, I assume, decline. So from those eight, let’s say 4-5 of those fouls happened from beyond 8 feet.

    Teams take on average about 47 shots from beyond 8 feet per game. From those 47, according to my generous estimate, 4-5 are fouls that happen from beyond 8 feet. The expected value for mid-range jumpers from 8-24 feet is around 0.79 points per shot (for threes it’s near 1.1) and as I mentioned earlier, for FTs its 1.5 (2.25 for being fouled on a three). Factoring in the fouls does raise expected value, but not by much. On average, it’s pretty negligible as you can see. Factoring in fouls won’t change the expected value of shots from between 8-24 feet by too much. It does probably go up a little bit, but not to the point where it becomes a more valuable shot option than a three or a shot from between 0-8 feet. And let’s not forget that shots from 0-8 feet will probably have an even higher expected value too if we factor in fouls.

    Long story short, it’s not worth watching through every single NBA game to find out that the expected value for a 2 pointer between 8-24 feet went up from 0.79 to ~0.85.)

    As for Kobe being special for going to the line a lot, I completely agree. I think that IS special…it’s one case. I still think the Lakers are best with Kobe driving in the lane and the team taking smart threes.

  17. Andre Khatchaturian August 2, 2013 at 12:34 pm

    Warren Wee Lim –

    You are 100% right. I would take an open 18 foot jumper over a contested 25 foot Metta three soon to be brick too. That’s why there is room for interpretation in these type of things. This is a general study which looks at the big picture – not one particular game or shot. Because the sample size is so large in this study, I am confident to say that the interpretation is accurate.

  18. “After running a regression between the distribution of shots from each distance range with intervals of 8 feet (less than 8 feet, 8-16 feet, 16-24 feet, and greater than 24 feet) with wins, a weak correlation was found …”

    It a real flaw to run the regression analysis with wins – winning basketball games is 50% offense and 50% defense. What does taking shots from various distances have to do with playing good defense? no wonder the correlation was weak.

    A smarter analysis would substitute offensive efficiency for wins. The Lakers last year only had 45 wins, but were 8th in the league in offensive efficiency. The Nuggets were 5th and the Rockets were 6th.

  19. What Andre’s has told me is that an open three is better than an open 18footer. Better still is an open layup.

    Not sure that really qualifies as basketball news, but it does support the way the game is being coached today.

    From this I derive that we must defend on the perimeter and have some kind of shot blocking/altering presence within 8ft of the basket – hence Jordan Hill is a necessary part of our team next year. Pau also blocks shots, but he is not an intimidator, therefore we also need steals. This is where people like Wesley Johnson become more valuable.

    Next year we don’t have a defensive stopper, but all the team members have to work together. Fortunately I think we have a better chance of this than we did last year – when the defensive stopper did pretty well, but there wasn’t much coordination.

  20. Re-posted from a previous thread:

    2012-13 Steal Percentages:

    Metta World Peace: 2.5
    Dwight Howard 1.6
    Wesley Johnson: 1.3
    Nick Young 1.3.
    Chris Kaman 1.1

    Farmar is pretty good at getting steals; his career numbers are at 2.0

  21. Just say no to Al Harrington! If the Lakers are going to sign a veteran player that is supposedly washed up, then I’d rather the Lakers take a chance on Odom. At least with Lamar the Lakers are aware of his flaws. Additionally, Odom has rapport and continuity with several players on the team, that’s a quality that can not be overlooked after the chemistry issues on last years team.

  22. C.Hearn,
    Couldn’t agree with you more.

    I suspect it is a good risk to see if Lamar has really lost his talent, or if his head was just so screwed up he couldn’t focus. I hope it was the latter and the Lakers can take advantage of helping to refocus him in an organization with which he has had success.

  23. I would have traded for Al Harrington. We could have packaged Hill & Blake. Filling needs for Orlando at PG and Center at essentially no cost to them. Harrington’s contract would come off the books at the same time as Nash allowing the Lakers to sign a Marque player in a market that is likely better then 2014. As a slightly overpaid stretch PF Harrington would have met a key need for the Lakers as a 2 year rental as long as MDA didn’t try to run Harrington for 40 min I think he would be a great fit to our team.

    With Harrington waived I would be estatic to see him signed. However, I’m doubtful he would come to LA for a min contract. This is the flaw I often see when fans see in rumors that a player maybe waived. You can’t expect them to sign for the min just because they were waived. Oh well.

  24. Andre Khatchaturian August 2, 2013 at 8:11 pm

    @sanchez_101

    This is why I ran multiple regressions – one with offense and one with defense.

  25. Good stuff here. I don’t have much to add. It makes sense that contested mid range jumpers are the worst shots to take statistically speaking. The funny thing is those are the shots that LeBron consistently hit to bury the Spurs down the stretch in game 7 of the Finals. Those are also the shots Jordan perfected in the Bulls’ second three peat run. As Aaron, Robert, and others have noted it really does come down to talent.

  26. Warren Wee Lim August 3, 2013 at 2:27 am

    Why would you give up a promising Jordan Hill to get a washed up Al Harrington?

    Jordan Hill was a lottery pick for a reason. He was picked 8th overall in a decently-talented draft. He didn’t get a shot in NY under MDA … he was never given a chance to play in Houston. Before his hip injury he was already a bright spot hustle guy who has developed his 18-footer. His rebounding rate is crazy for the limited minutes he plays.

    I cannot give a factual basis that he would average 14-16 rebounds per game if he was given a 30mpg burn but I can tell you that he is a very good 24mpg spot starter that plays with hustle, defense (can block shots) and rebound like mad.\

    That along with him being 26 or so makes him tonnes better than Al Harrington already.

  27. Warren Wee Lim August 3, 2013 at 2:29 am

    Considering that the Lakers need size down low to defend and not have to rely on Sacre for long stretches, having Jordan Hill as a starting PF and defacto backup C is a very good backup big for his price. He can play beside Pau, and he can be a Center if we want to go real small (w/ Pau and Kaman either resting or in foul trouble) while one of our stretch-fours take the court.

  28. Warren,
    I feel the same way about Wesley Johnson. He was a high lottery pick for a reason, and sources were saying in Phoenix he was very coachable and always in the right place on offense and defense. To me that means he has a good BB IQ and understands how to fill a role. This is exactly what we need on the team this year.

  29. Whether its harrington, odom or whoever else we need a 6’8+ player with weight to be a part of our rotation to guard the durants, melos and lebrons of the world – look how effectove diaw was against lebron in the finals -if we dont have a player like that guys like young amd johnson are going to get eaten alive.by guys in the post – at least odom and harrimgton have legotimate experience and nba level talent and are not d-league scrubs like landry amd harris – as much as we migjt like those guys on the defenders they are not nba players – would much rather have an odom or harrington for the same dollars as either of them

  30. Warren Wee Lim August 3, 2013 at 8:55 am

    Harrington being waived means he is a free agent after 48 hours. That also means that if he wants a shot at a glorified role player gig then he’d choose us. Remember that he had one of his best years under MDA.

    My problem w/ him is to use Blake and Hill to get him. To me thats just not worth it.

    I agree w/ Craig on Wes Johnson. I think he has redemption written all over his season. And if not, boo. We spend 1 million. No harm done.

  31. Harrington Comment from this link:
    “I want to win, so I’ll put it like this: I want to go to a situation where I can compete to make the playoffs. I’m too old to play for nothing.”
    There was a time that these type of comments worked to our benefit.
    Also – there is the money topic. Which also does not help us.
    http://sportige.com/nba-rumors-los-angeles-clippers-indiana-pacers-might-try-sign-al-harrington-2013-07/

  32. Warren Wee Lim and Craig W.,

    Before this thread fades into oblivion, I felt that I absolutely had to comment. I completely agree with your assessments on Jordan Hill and Wes Johnson. These are two players who play important positions (the 3 and the 4) and could significantly impact the Lakers’ fortunes this coming year.

    They have much in common as you’ve already noted. Both Hill and Johnson can be defensive stalwarts. They’re the same age (26). They’re mobile, young, have excellent lateral movement, are former lottery picks, run the court well (boy, don’t we need that), and are probably dying to prove to the world that their potential has been stifled over the years.

    Both players could have–potentially–a significant, positive impact on the Lakers this coming season. That is why, in large measure, I’m (guardedly) optimistic about the coming year. When we add them to the very different, and in some ways compementary, talents of Jordan Farmar and Nick Young, the results could be entirely positive. I think there are actually some things to look forward to this coming season.

  33. Jordan Hill is a fantastic player. He does not fit as a stretch PF. If asked to start and play long minutes in all likelihood hes just going to clog the pain and allow defenders to sag into the post. Harrington is a legitimate stretch PF who would fit in the system playing 20-30 min.

    Blake I believe will be the 3rd best PG on the Lakers I see him making 4 million next year to sit on the bench until someone gets hurt. Harrington may be slightly overpaid but he would be utilized. If you consider the fact you could have a guy making 4 million to sit this isn’t exactly throwing money down the drain. Harrington former contract also would come off at the same time as Nash. Allowing for the Lakers to sign a marquee player in 2015 from a better talent pool. I do not think Harrington is “washed up”. Do I think hes a long term solution? No. But for 2 years? Yes He would make a lot of sense on the Laker roster.

    If the Lakers are going to run an MDA offense then they should be getting guys who can run it.

  34. Andre Khatchaturian August 3, 2013 at 10:23 pm

    I love how the first post and last post in these threads usually have nothing to do with each other haha.

  35. Inequality Sign Police August 4, 2013 at 8:46 am

    Please reverse the “>” sign in the first table. “> 8 Feet” means “greater than 8 Feet” which, as I read, was not what you meant. Other than that, excellent work!

  36. Andre Khatchaturian August 4, 2013 at 1:25 pm

    Inequality SIgn Police –

    I have sent my citation in the mail. Forgive me.

  37. Renato Afens,
    I like your point abt *how* a team gets those <8 shots. Would a stat differentiating btwn "assisted" & "no assist" buckets do what u r talking about?