Plus/Minus stat in the NBA

In this "Moneyball" / Fantasy game sports world that now exists - statistics in sports has never been more followed and studied by the masses. In the major sports where an individuals' statistics are determined almost solely on that individual (Baseball and Football), a player's value is largely judged on the stats they accumulate. Rushing yards, Touchdowns, Home Runs, Strikeouts, etc... (The one exception could be a Tom Brady who keeps producing the biggest stat of them all - WINS - but again, these are the small exceptions).
In other team sports like Basketball and the defunked NHL - a player could be highly valuable to a team without producing in the major statistic categories like points/rebounds/assists or goals/assists respectively. I believe that Hockey actually HAD done one thing right in their game by keeping the "plus/minus" statistic. For those who don't know, the plus/minus statistic is a simple equation: How did your team fare in goals while you were on the ice versus how did your team fare in goals when you were not on the ice. A player with a high "plus" number can be perceived as highly valuable as that players team obviously did better with that person on the ice...

I know that many NBA teams and coaching staffs (like Danny Ainge used to do in Phoenix) track this stat - but I think the NBA should have this as a standard tracked statistic by the league. Yes - I am a fantasy junkie - so I think it would be a great addition to that aspect of the game, but I truly believe that this stat could potentially tell a lot. Good defenders or "energy" guys could have a metric put against their value rather than relying solely on "fitting into coaches system," etc. This wouldn't completely change the game - but certainly could give guys who have different styles a better chance at making the league....

On a similar note: Shot out to Dave Stempler for sending me this cool site that tracks similar stats.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

So you're obviously 1 of the 10 people that care about the NBA still. Yes, I am a hater!!!! EFF the NBA. Bring back baseball and football.


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