Bucks Diary

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Bucks preseason production and the history of the Scotty Effect


If the Bucks could only produce the NBA average number of points per shot attempt, and limit their opponents to the same, they would be having a great preseason. (And if President Lincoln hadn't got shot he probably would have enjoyed the play).

Seriously though, this Bucks per minute statistical production chart I did shows that the team has been slightly below average in several offensive and defensive categories. But the one glaring area where the team has been severly below average on both offense and defense is in points per shot attempt, which is calculated as: "points" minus "free throws made" divided by "field goal attempts".

The good news is that lowering opponents' point scoring efficiency is among Coach Skiles "defensive rehabilitation" specialties. He did just that in his previous two NBA coaching stints.

This chart shows the relevant defensive numbers for the two Skiles-lead organizations for seasons: Pre, During, and Post Scotty (the season he wore out his welcome).

As you can see from the numbers I compiled, teams tend to become dramatically better during Coach Skiles first full season in the key defensive areas of: Opponents' Points per Shot, Opponents' Adjusted Field Goal %, Opponent Assisted Field Goals, and Defensive Point Value Over Average (the average difference between the number of points you would expect an opponent to score in a given number of possessions, and the number of points they actually score against your defense in that same number of possessions) .

Unfortunately, the chart also shows that the Bucks will be Scotty's greatest "repair job" to date. While the team's he previously took over were certainly below average defensively, neither was quite the all-out "Ole" Bullfighters the Bucks were in 2007-08.

On the other hand, the new Bucks regime ran most of the team's worst defenders out of town this summer. So Scotty's task may not be as difficult as the numbers suggest. And, as I noted in the last post, we're already beginning to see signs of progress.

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