Thursday, July 28, 2011

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Player Peak Performance Equation (Revised)

I've been playing with this peak performance concept for the last few days and added a few components (which I'll explain later on) and tweaked the values for some of the others a bit. It's still pretty rough, and it started out as a look at Yao Ming's career, so most of the players I've evaluated so far are centers. But I wanted to see how well it translated to other positions, so I threw in the rest of my current top 20 players and a couple players I was curious about, as well. (Also, don't worry, I haven't forgotten about the List of Greatness. I just need to get off my ass and type up the results.) Anyway, here's the quick and dirty results of my revised system:

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Player Peak Performance Equation (Initial Results) - Updated with Stats

Here's the initial results with the Peak Performance Equation and the first 12 (okay, technically 13) players I've tested it with. I still have a bunch of other guys to throw in to the mix to fine tune it (pretty much everyone listed in the comments) but I wanted to get some initial reactions and feedback from my readers first.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

The Legacy of Yao Ming

*Update: I had an idea for this that turned out to take longer than what I was originally going to do. I'm going to test out my "player's peak" formula with Yao and see how it stacks up against some of the all-time great big men. It's taking a bit more time than I anticipated to work the kinks out of that, but I'd guess it'll be up by the end of the week.

Basically, I was just going to look at how his career measured against the careers of other greats, but since Yao's career was "injury-plagued" at best, I decided to look at his "peak performance" of his best year, his best three year stretch, and his best five year stretch, and compare those to the following centers:

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar
Bill Russell
Wilt Chamberlain
Shaquille O'Neal
Hakeem Olajuwon
Moses Malone
David Robinson
George Mikan
Patrick Ewing
Robert Parish
Bill Walton

(These are currently the top ten centers according to my Greatness Equation, plus Bill Walton, who, like Yao, was an amazingly gifted big man whose body just couldn't do what he wanted/needed it to do in the long run.)

Any other centers you'd like to see in this test run of my Peak Performance Equation?

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

List of Greatness - Honorary Members

I'm going to try something a little bit new with the List of Greatness here. I'm starting to feel like the guys who have been in the top five for, oh, a couple decades now but keep getting jumped should have some kind of recognition. So here's my plan: I'm going to take a look at how everyone finished for every year since 1956. If a player finishes in the Top 10 ten times, he gets in the list as an "Honorary Member." Same if he finishes Top 9 nine times, Top 8 eight times, etc. (I'd also kind of like to come up with a better term than Honorary Member, since that kind of makes it sound like they didn't quite earn it, even though they definitely did. But Honorary is the best thing I can think of right now.) However, I still want to try and make sure the List is a fairly exclusive club, so, once somebody becomes an Honorary Member, they are still eligible to receive the yearly recognition. Jerry Lucas a perfect example of what I mean. Here's how his top ten finishes looked:

1968 - 7th
1969 - 5th
1970 - 4th
1971 - 3rd
1972 - 2nd
1973 - 2nd
1974 - 1st

So, Lucas would have become an Honorary Member in 1973, for finishing 2nd twice (also Top 3 three times, Top 4 four times, and Top 5 five times). But in 1974, he became that year's inductee for finishing first. By keeping Honorary Members still eligible for the yearly induction, I'm hoping it will still keep the Top 10 fairly exclusive, and therefore keep the List in general fairly exclusive. If we end up with a ratio of one Honorary Member every five years or so, I'll be happy with that.

So here's the list of guys for Honorary Inductees through 1974.
Max Zaslofsky - five Top 5 as of 1960
Larry Foust - five Top 5 as of 1960
Joe Fulks - eight Top 8 as of 1963
George Yardley - five Top 5 as of 1963
Cliff Hagan - four Top 4 as of 1964

And two other Honorary Members got inducted as Annual Members later on:
Slater Martin - Honorary in 1959, Annual for 1961
Jerry Lucas - Honorary in 1973, Annual for 1974

So let me know what you guys think. Is this a good idea? Does it make the List too cluttered? I'm definitely going to see how it'll play out down the line and if it ends up causing a huge surplus of players I'll have to change the criteria or do away with it altogether.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

The List of Greatness - 1974

1974's inductee is somebody who probably shouldn't come as much of a surprise to anyone who's been following the last few posts: he's been in the "on deck" circle the last two years but kept getting jumped. But if you haven't, here's a hint: it's someone who's probably underrated by quite a bit, and it's someone I share a name with. (Well, kind of. His last name is my first name. And it's merely a coincidence, not like I was named after him or anything. But it's still there.)

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

New Sporcle Quiz

I put up a new Sporcle quiz tonight. See if you can guess all of the Hall of Fame players who haven't had their jerseys retired by any team.

Friday, July 1, 2011

The List of Greatness - 1973

To soften the blow of the NBA lockout, which starts at midnight, July 1, here's another List of Greatness post. (I have no idea what to expect from this lockout. I would assume the players will almost have to cave first - since some teams claim to lose more money by playing the games than by doing nothing. The question now is - how long do the players hold out? How long can the players go without paychecks? Does this become a point of pride thing where Billy Hunter just refuses to budge even though everyone can see it has to happen and by not conceding he's just hurting his players even more? Think the "Canada on Strike" episode of South Park. And for the record, I'm not really backing one side or the other, I just think the owners have more leverage here. Ugh... Now I'm depressed...) Anyway, an interesting thing about this year's list: I'm 99% positive this year's top ten features more active players (7) than any previous year. There not all getting in, so it's going to be interesting to see who gets squeezed out going forward.