The New Metric, Week 3, Post-Christmas Special

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Today we bring you an update in the metric we looked at in the previous two weeks. For a brief rehash, the metric measures teams that have an offensive eFG% above 50% and a defensive eFG% below 50% when they are most dominant. Essentially, when each team performs above its average eFG% and defensive eFG%, we then measure their net rating. This allows us to see, in quarters where teams are playing at their offensive and/or defensive average, who is most dominant. For more information see the original article here.

The two big changes this week were the subtraction of the Portland Trailblazers and Charlotte Hornets from the ranking – due to the worsening of their eFG% – as well as Golden State’s rise to the top of all rankings. The latter is not attributable to the Spurs playing poorly; on the contrary, they have been elite. Yet, since the loss to Milwaukee, Golden State has been playing at a proto-superior level.

Chart Offensive Efficiency Above 50%

Figure 1 Stats via NBA.com/Stats

Thus, Figure 1 is similar to last week. The Warriors are clearly the best team in this rating. The Thunder, Spurs, Cavs, and Heat are all clustered in the second tier. Whereas the Hawks and Clippers are clearly a league below.

Chart Defensive Efficiency Below 50%Figure 2 Stats from NBA.com/Stats

Figure 2, which looks at a team’s dominance when it’s Defensive eFG% is below 50%, suggests similar figures to last week. In this chart, Golden State continues to expand its dominance.

Additionally, Miami continues to rise through the top half of the chart. This suggests that they are very dominant when at their defensive quarterly average. This could be seen in their match against New Orleans on Christmas Day, where their defense combined with Chris Bosh’s dominant game resulted in an overtime win.

Chart OE above 50% and DE below 50%

Figure 3 Stats from NBA.com/Stats

Figure 3 suggests similar numbers to last week. Yet, the biggest change is how Golden State has overtaken San Antonio as the most dominant team when its eFG% is above its average and its Opponent’s eFG% is better than their average. As stated previously, this is due to the Warriors performing at an unseen level.

Moreover, Cleveland is clearly moving its way up the chart. This is partially due to the disappearance of the Hornets – who have been struggling without Al Jefferson, however, will most likely find their way back soon – but is also reflective of their slow improvement. Yet, the Cavaliers are currently struggling, they are halfway through their four game road trip, and the performance in its second half will most likely change their numbers in next week’s rankings.

Nonetheless, as the season continues, expect Golden State and San Antonio to clearly be in the top tier, while Oklahoma City and Cleveland could find their way into that tier as well, assuming both of the latter teams continue to improve.

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