Bucks Diary

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Lue and Allen may not add much to Bucks

The Bucks recent free agent signings, Malik Allen and Tyronne Lue, both fit new coach Scott Skiles love of defense. But both of them, based on last season's performance, leave a lot to be desired on offense.

By my statistic, "Defensive Win Production", which basically takes the established metric "Win Score" and applies it to the player's "opponent counterparts", both Allen and Lue were above average performers last season. So they each should fit nicely into Coach Skiles scheme.

Lue's "Defensive Win Score" was +0.3 above average (meaning his opponent counterparts were, collectively, that far below average) which translated into approximately 1.5 "defensive half wins" (inverting Professor Berri's Win Production formula and crediting each end of the floor with "half" a win). That's, obviously, slightly above average... as you would expect from his slightly above average Defensive Win Score. Allen, meanwhile, playing the power forward, did even better with his "D", recording a "Defensive Win Score" of +1.1, which translated into about 2.3 defensive half wins. Again, above average defensive win production. Very nice for defensively starved Green-and-Red fans to see.

However... and there always seems to be a "however" when it comes to the Bucks... where each struggles mightily is on offense. Last season Lue's "Offensive Win Score" was -2.7, which translated into about 0.1 offensive half wins in his 736 minutes of action. If you combine that with his defensive half wins, Lue produced about 0.9 wins for the Atlanta Hawks. The problem is, the average performer would have been expected to produce about 1.5 wins in that amount of time, meaning that playing Lue effectively cost the Hawks 0.6 wins.

Now, if you use my "If He Were The Whole Team" statistic, which is calculated as "Wins Produced Above Average" divided by "% of Overall Playing time" plus 41, then Lue figures to be a 25-57 player... a worse player than the Bucks team as a whole last season. (Note: "If He Were The Whole Team" essentially asks the following query "If the whole team performed at this guy's level, what would our record be?". So, you should come up with, generally, a number that resembles an NBA team's 82 game won-loss record. But it doesn't always work that cleanly. For the superstars, the "IHWTWT" record will often include more wins than games played... for instance, if all the Cavaliers were all as productive as LeBron, then the Cavs would have won 19 more games than they actually played. And, inversely, some players are so bad that if the whole team were as crappy as them, the team would actually LOSE more games than they played. So, "IHWTWT" essentially tells you what level, by record, each player performs at... with some fiction involved for the really good and the really bad).

For Malik Allen, the offensive story is even worse. His "Offensive Win Score", as a power forward, was -4.5. That translated into Offensive Half Wins totaling, unfortunately, in the red... -1.2. Put that together with his Defensive Half Wins of 2.3, and Allen produced 0.6 wins last season.

An average NBA player consuming 1096 minutes, however, would have been expected to produce 2.2 wins. Thus, granting Allen playing time cost his team approximately 1.6 games. Given that Allen ate up about 5.5% of his team's overall playing time, if a whole team bled wins at Allen's rate, that team could expect to finish with a dismal record of 11-71.

So, while I like the emphasis on defense, both Lue and Allen must upgrade their offensive production over last season if they are to make significant contributions to the success of the 2008-09 Milwaukee Bucks. And I do expect them to be successful.


At July 25, 2008 at 1:17 AM, Blogger Trigorin said...


At August 8, 2008 at 5:45 AM, Blogger TCW said...

No, no, no... you misunderstood me. What i am saying is, if everyone on your roster were producing at the above average rate that LeBron produced at, you would win 19 MORE GAMES THAN YOU ACTUALLY PLAYED. With a team full of 2007-08 LeBron's, your 82 game record would be 101 wins and NEGATIVE 19 losses. In other words you would not only be undefeated, you would have 19 "extra wins". Obviously, thats a pure fiction, but it highlights the degree to which LeBron's performance exceeded the performance of the average NBA player.


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