Basketball on Paper: Rules and Tools for Performance Analysis

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Overview

Journey "inside the numbers" for an exceptional set of statistical tools and rules that can help explain the winning, or losing, ways of a basketball team. Basketball on Paper doesn?t diagram plays or explain how players get in shape, but instead demonstrates how to interpret player and team performance.

Dean Oliver highlights general strategies for teams when they?re winning or losing and what aspects should be the focus in either situation. He describes and quantifies the jobs...

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Basketball on Paper: Rules and Tools for Performance Analysis

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Overview

Journey "inside the numbers" for an exceptional set of statistical tools and rules that can help explain the winning, or losing, ways of a basketball team. Basketball on Paper doesn’t diagram plays or explain how players get in shape, but instead demonstrates how to interpret player and team performance.

Dean Oliver highlights general strategies for teams when they’re winning or losing and what aspects should be the focus in either situation. He describes and quantifies the jobs of team leaders and role players, then discusses the interactions between players and how to achieve the best fit. Oliver conceptualizes the meaning of teamwork and how to quantify the value of different types of players working together. He examines historically successful NBA teams and identifies what made them so successful: individual talent, a system of putting players together, or good coaching.

Oliver then uses these statistical tools and case studies to evaluate the best players in history, such as Magic Johnson, Wilt Chamberlain, Bill Russell, and Charles Barkley and how they contributed to their teams’ success. He does the same for some of the NBA’s "oddball" players-Manute Bol, Muggsy Bogues, and Dennis Rodman and for the WNBA’s top players.

Basketball on Paper is unique in its incorporation of business and analytical concepts within the context of basketball to measure the value of players in a cooperative setting. Whether you’re looking for strategies or new ideas to throw out while watching the ballgame at a sports bar, Dean Oliver’sBasketball on Paper will give you amazing new insights into teamwork, coaching, and success.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"At the risk of succumbing to hyperbole, Basketball on Paper is a revolutionary strike for statistical analysis of the game of basketball. . . . There has never been a basketball book quite like [it]."

"The must-read hoops numbers book."

"Statistics guru Dean Oliver . . . is to the NBA what Bill James is to baseball."

"Excellent writing. There are a lot of math guys who just rush from the numbers to the conclusion. . . . Dean is more that that; he's really struggling to understand the actual problem, rather than the statistical after-image of it. I learn a lot by reading him."

"Oliver's book provides an insightful framework for basketball. . . . This book is a unique and surprisingly practical addition to a coach's library."

"A revolutionary strike for statistical analysis of the game of basketball."

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781574886887
  • Publisher: Potomac Books Inc.
  • Publication date: 11/30/2004
  • Pages: 392
  • Sales rank: 354,018
  • Product dimensions: 9.84 (w) x 5.52 (h) x 0.82 (d)

Meet the Author

Dean Oliver is a former basketball player, assistant coach, and collegiate scout, and has contributed to Basketball Digest. In 1996 he founded the Journal of Basketball Studies, an online compilation of basketball research, and contributes to the Association for Professional Basketball Research. Oliver currently provides statistical advice to the Seattle Supersonics and the public relations director of the WNBA. He lives in Oakland, California.

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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments
Abbreviations
Ch. 1 How to Read This Book 1
Ch. 2 Watching a Game: Offensive Score Sheets 8
Ch. 3 The Best Offenses and Defenses (And Some of the Worst, Too) 29
Ch. 4 Reserve Your Playoff Tickets Now! We Won Three in a Row! 69
Ch. 5 Teamwork 77
Ch. 6 Rebounding Myths and Roles 86
Ch. 7 The Significance of Derrick Coleman's Insignificance 93
Ch. 8 Amos Tversky's Basketball Legacy 101
Ch. 9 The Power of Parity 108
Ch. 10 Teamwork 2: A Game of Ultimatums 114
Ch. 11 Basketball's Bell Curve 117
Ch. 12 The Effect of Bad Referees and Other Short Stories 134
Ch. 13 Teamwork 3: Distributing Credit among Cooperating Players 144
Ch. 14 Individual Floor Percentages and Offensive Ratings 154
Ch. 15 The Holy Grail of Player Ratings 181
Ch. 16 Insight on a Boxscore 192
Ch. 17 Individual Defensive Ratings 198
Ch. 18 Should I Firebomb Billy Donovan's House? 221
Ch. 19 The Problem with Scorers 232
Ch. 20 Individual Win-Loss Records 242
Ch. 21 Player Evaluation Files: The Great Ones 261
Ch. 22 Player Evaluation Files: Freaks, Specialists, and Women 290
Ch. 23 Basic Tools to Evaluate a Team 318
Ch. 24 Weather Forecasts 337
App. 1 Calculation of Individual Offensive Ratings and Floor Percentages 343
App. 2 Individual Floor Percentages and Offensive Ratings for History's Great Offenses 350
App. 3 Individual Defensive Formulas 359
App. 4 Team Statistic Historical Regression 364
Glossary 367
References 369
Index 371
About the Author 376
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