Toronto Sports Fanatic

The Raptors organization is one of the few that makes a nice profit despite their perennial bottom-feeder status, so I’m sure the board at MLSE is none too pleased to see an entire season go to waste – especially if the rumours are true for any impending sale of the teams. However, with the continued financial success of the Leafs and the hundreds of other projects undertaken by MLSE, ownership can afford to fight alongside their brethren until a favourable deal is reached with the Player’s Association.

As for the team and players this is pretty much a lose-lose situation. The Player’s Association – like that of the NHL’s – is going to have to give back a lot. Salary rollbacks, a hard or flex cap, player amnesties, and lower max years and money for contracts all seem like an inevitability. Also, with one of the youngest teams in the league and the inability for players and coaches to interact, an entire season of development would be lost for the likes of Amir Johnson, Ed Davis, Jerryd Bayless, and Demar Derozan. It is up to the players to stay in shape and find ways to work on their games during the lockout – something I’m sure management discussed thoroughly with the players before the lockout began.

Wages of Wins


Michael Redd and Yao Ming make an appearance at the top of this one. Toronto fans please note, Bargnani is the only player in the top 7 who was not traded or catastrophically injured.

The Score

By this breakdown, the Raptors came in 27th in the league in terms of the dollars spent in comparison to the wins produced.

In my earlier post on Jonas Valanciunas, I said we wouldn’t needlessly throw Andrea Bargnani under the bus –and we won’t– but what happens when we’re looking at information like this? It’s not pretty, that’s for sure.

Somehow, this doesn’t entirely shock me. And at the exact same time, it blows my mind.

As I said this morning, there’s plenty of room aboard the bandwagon for #TeamJonas.

Seriously though, this is where I hope in earnest that this is the season Bargnani puts the pieces together. He’s too talented to not, right? Okay, maybe not. If Toronto fans know anything, they know that talent and potential don’t mean anything without heart. Come on, Bargnani. If not now, when?

The Score

The fact that the 19-year-old Lithuanian big man was apparently “crying and punching walls” after the loss shows his competitive spirit and intense desire to win, but may also come across as wildly mentally unstable. Instead, I’ll go with Paulie’s theory, which should spell disaster for whoever takes on the role of “Clubber Lang,” as Valanciunas’ next opponent.

Whether Jonas Valanciunas really does go all Rambo on us and eventually starts leaving bodies by the wayside of NBA courts remains to be seen, but one thing we can say for certain is that despite never living in North America, his English is already better than Sylvester Stallone’s.


The lockout leaves us with so many interesting things to blog about, doesn’t it?

The Score

In short: I’m excited. I’m so excited to see this young, hungry, player who wants so badly to play under the bright lights of the NBA. Of course, with this excitement, comes the news that Valanciunas won’t be here in Toronto for another season, but at this point, that’s cool. Let him get bigger, stronger and a year older. Hopefully we’ll have a season to watch the rest of the Raptors roster develop while he does his thing overseas, but if not, we’ll be eagerly awaiting his debut and tracking his progress next season. The Jonas Valanciunas hype-machine has been turned on and set to high and I don’t expect it to be dialed down anytime soon.

As of today, Valancuinas might just be named the MVP of the Under-19 World Championship. He’s currently leading in scoring, rebounding and blocked shots with 21.4 points, 13.4 rebounds and 3.6 blocks per game. This is impressive stuff, even if it is against under-19 competition.

Get excited, Raptors fans. It’s okay. If we’re let down, we’re let down. I don’t think this guy is going to let us down because of a lack of effort or pride. I’m jumping on the bandwagon. Join me, why don’t you?

Toronto Star

Though NBA clubs are currently barred from having contact with players, it’s safe to say the Toronto front office would be in favour of Weems playing in Europe; while the club is hardly sold on Weems as a long-term contributor to the cause, newly installed coach Dwane Casey is said to be intrigued by Weems’s potential as a defensive specialist with considerable scoring punch. Weems could raise his NBA stock if he shows the maturity required to thrive in Europe.

Certainly playing basketball in Lithuania beats, say, playing craps in Las Vegas. Should the lockout drag on, NBA players will need an outlet for their energies — not to mention a place to maintain their skill sets.

Kobe Bryant and his agent are reportedly in the early stages of assembling a group of NBAers to embark on a potentially lucrative tour of exhibition games in China; a similar idea is said to be in the hopper of the Wasserman Media Group, whose clients include Derrick Rose, Pau Gasol and Russell Westbrook.

The nascent National Basketball League of Canada is even attempting to capitalize on a potentially idle workforce, sending out a press release on Tuesday inviting locked-out NBAers to consider running with one of its franchises. And while some observers may see that prospect as a stretch — NBA players earn average salaries of about $6 million (U.S.) while the NBL recently announced a salary cap of $150,000 for each 10- to 12-man roster — perhaps the limits of the imagination will inspire players with NBA resumés to come north, even for a relative pittance.

As one NBA insider said: “There’s only so much you can do working out alone in a gym with pylons.”

New York Times

“Ticket revenues … are up 22% compared to 1999-2000 season”

¶ Ticket revenues have increased 12% over the 10 year period, not the 22% reported.

“17 teams lost money according to Forbes … Most of these losses were small…”

¶ Forbes’s claim is inaccurate. In 2009-10, 23 teams had net income losses. The losses were in no way “small” as 11 teams lost more than $20M each on a net income basis.

“The profits made by the Knicks, Bulls and Lakers alone would be enough to cover the losses of all 17 unprofitable teams.”

¶ The Knicks’, Bulls’ and Lakers’ combined net income for 2009-10 does not cover the losses of the 23 unprofitable teams. Our net loss for that year, including the gains from the seven profitable teams, was -$340 million.

“Forbes’s estimates – a $183 million profit for the NBA in 2009-10, and those issued by the league, which claim a $370M loss…”

¶ Forbes’s data is inaccurate. Our losses for 2009-10 were -$340 million, not -$370 million as the article states.

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  • Nilanka15

    The New York Times pieces highlights how we can’t trust anything we read.

    • JW

      Keep in mind that the NY Times piece is just the words of an NBA spokesperson.  Even Nate Silver concludes his article with the following. 

      “…in general the league has not made substantial detail on its
      financial condition, or its accounting procedures, available to the
      general public.

      The Forbes data may suffer from this lack of publicly-available
      information, but they remain the only independent estimates of the
      league’s financial condition. In my view, a degree of skepticism is
      appropriate toward any claims made about the N.B.A.’s finances.

      At this point you need to break things down into spin, and consider the source.  In this case I trust an independent arbitrator over the mouth of an NBA spokesperson.  Forbes has made a good reputation for being that arbitrator and providing accurate data to its readers.  They do not have a vested interest in LYING or supporting one side over the other.   Tim Frank, an NBA rep, does.

      I would love for this issue to go to arbitration, but the NBA and Stern are vehemently opposed to that option. IMO, when one side is scared of an arbitrator and the other is not, it usually indicates a vulnerability in the facts presented. If the losses are really so clear and cut and the end result of the last CBA, than any reasonable arbitrator would see this given the correct data. The numbers can’t lie. The NBA does not even want consider the option, which to me is extremely suspicious.

      • Statement

        Good point.

      • Theswirsky

        That more or less sums it up for me to.  Nice post. 

      • slaw

        Well, the NBA may also not want arbitration because the outcome of any adjudicated hearing is entirely unpredictable. Or because it knows an arbitrator may just cut the baby in half. Or because the NBA knows it will eventually get 90% of what it wants if it waits this out.

        Look, I don’t think any reasonable person takes the NBA’s claims about losses at face value. Having said that, I don’t think any reasonable person disputes that there are a material number of teams in the league that are struggling in their markets. The argument isn’t really over how much money the league as a whole is losing but how to keep 30 franchises stable. Of course, where you come out on that depends on how important you think having 30 stable franchises really is and whether its a worthwhile goal at all.

        • Bendit

          I agree with the main thrust of your post where the ownership is seeking fundamental structural change to the cba…eg. hard/flex cap, guaranteed yrs. in the contracts etc. They however also need to address revenue sharing amongst themselves and players and in someway the paying public. These are not issues for an arbitrator.

          • JW

            In that case these issues don’t seem to be for anyone but the owners to decide on and hence this lock out.   ONLY OUR WAY, or no way. 

            Hopefully the PA can create their own league, and this way the owners will not lose any more money and they can go invest in other businesses.

            Maybe the ownership should be given partially to the players, this way losses come from them as well…. but curiously the NBA wants to have nothing to do with that.  Wonder why they would want a money losing venture all for themselves…. things that make you go hmmmm….

            It’s a simple solution, if its so bad to own a team, let the players have partial ownership while they play for their team. Rather than salaries let good players have higher percentages etc… THIS ALWAYS GETS REJECTED.

            (I know lots of companies that lose money year to year, but their corporate asset base increases. Meaning the operational income is a loss, but the overall franchise value keeps growing.)

            Funny how these “20 million dollar annual loss” owners are holding on to their franchises with super glue grips. Could it be that you can write those loses off against your capital gains in the future, and never really suffer the loss…. hmmm, I know I could make money with anyone of these franchises, but finance is my specialty, so I am kind of an isolated case.

            In situations like this, you give stock options to the players, instead of salary, but the NBA does not want to do that. THEY WANT NO PART IN THAT. (someone is making money)

            • Bendit

              Far be it for me to support entirely the owners position here. My own beef is ensuring the competitive balance of teams and competition in the league and making it more affordable to witness a live NBA game (fat chance for the latter!). That said we know there is no disagreement on recorded revenues. The PA has been verifying this for years now to sign off on the salary cap figures imposed which in turn of course determines salaries and to an extent max. contracts and mid level salary numbers. The problem lies in the owners “plea” that while revenues have grown, expenses have grown faster. The nub lies in these figures and their veracity.
              In such a dispute I (and many others) find it difficult to fully support either side. The fact is one cannot really exist without the other (parties and sides of the ledger) and so this lockout shall end when one or both sides feel a point is reached of diminishing returns. My money is on that the players will reach this faster. Their lifestyle and short career spans just cannot afford to not accept even 60 cents on the dollar considering what they make. And to my knowledge there has never been a player created league borne of a lockout/strike which sustained let alone been successful.

      • BCGheradiniJayGots2Go!!!

        Stern must have 2 sets of League accounting books- maybe

        A person can manipulate ‘numbers/stats’ to do almost anything in order to support their words of deception.

        The NBA should consider implementing some type of revenue sharing structure amongst teams if they are really concerned about money or concerned owners can sell their team as the lowest valued NBA team is currently at 258 million dollars.

        2016 paradigm- new TV contract for NBA higher tv ratings the bigger the new contract to split up amongst owners/players.

        Arbitration or bust!!lol

  • golden

    Wow.  The Raps were paying 5 guys on last year’s the Wages of Wins all-overpaid list:  Bargs, Kapono, Barbosa, Peja, TJ Ford.  No wonder why Silvestri was having a hissy fit. 

    • golden

      ^^^  Meant payed or signed to contracts (not just paying).  🙂

    • JW

      That is a tad worrisome.

      • Statement

        I posted this somwhere else but I thought I’d post it here too.  It’s some Bargnani “hate” but I do think that it is revealing.

        “Sure Bargs was forced into being the number one scoring option, but that doesn’t excuse his historically poor rebounding.BTW how did he do, scoring wise for a number one option? Well if you go to basketball and do a sort by player 6-10 and taller and whose usage rate was greater than 25% this year and then you rank by true shooting percentage you get 10 names. Bargnani ranks 7th out of 10.””Oh and BTW, Bargnani also has the worst defensive rating and rebounding rate of everybody on that list.”

        • Nilanka15

          “No rebounds, no rings”

    • Theswirsky

      yeah stupid number crunchers don’t know anything…. wait what? 

    • Juicey

      And if you add J.O. and Vince, it becomes a who’s who of current and previous Raptors.

      Still surprised not to see Hedon’t on that list.

  • hateslosing

    Meh, it’s diheartening but hardly new info. Bargs’ advanced stats are awful, everyone already knew that, this is just another example of it. We’ll see what  happens in the upcoming season.

  • Quirk

    I really like Wins Produced as a stat, however due to the lack of efficiency stats for rebounds, it misvalues individual rebounds, as such it must be taken with a huge grain at the extremes.

    In other words players that are outliers in individual rebounds at their position. If you Believe that Bargnani is among the worst players in history, as WP suggests, then you must also believe that Reggie Evans belongs in the Hall Of Fame, and was nearly as productive as LeBron James last season, as his WP suggests. 

    While very valuable for the bulk of platers, the stat is garbage at the extremes, which is why it baffles me why WP advocates continue to harp on outliers like Bargnani and Evans and produce bogus lists like this, which serve only to highlight the weakness of their stat, instead of its strengths. 

    WP is brilliant at identifying potential steals in the draft, players playing abroad, or sitting on the benches of other teams, Wages of Wins and the other sites should focus on these kinds of articles, instead of causing waves of head-shaking and eye-rolling wold wide with another round of trumpeting ridiculous and misleading results for outliers in their metric.

    • Theswirsky

      WP is not an absolute ranking, the problem lies in viewing it as such. 

      What I think WP says about bargnani and reggie is that Bargnani is a much worse player than his scoring indicates, and Reggie is a much better player than his scoring indicates.  While someone like Lebron is just as good as his scoring indicates.  To take that further, when you see situations where Bargnani is a negative WP, I don’t think it means he is therefore the worst player in the league, but rather what he doesn’t do (or does wrong) outweighs what he does right (just by a large margin).  That hardly means its garbage or bogus. 

      Question why is WP any better at identifying marginal players than it is regular players?  If anything (with any advanced stats) marginal players are harder to identify do to the limited sample size and usually significantly different comparable values.  If WP is good for foreign players, NCAA or bench players it offers more reliable information for NBA rotation players  

      All this tells me is people don’t want to believe what it says, more than they know it is actually incorrect.

      • Statement

        I like WP as well,

        but quirk has a point.  Maybe I should be a little bit more up on how it works, but somebody with a high usage (i.e. Bargs) shouldn’t be penalized for taking more shots but shooting less than 50%.  I think Berri did a study on this and found that the “lack of accounting” for high usage is statistically significant, but small.

        BTW shooting efficiency is the most important variable in the stat.

        I like this stat and 82games on/court off-court stuff as well.  Adjusted +/- I like less because a lot of the time the large size of the standard errors on the estimates mean that the model says “I don’t know” how helpful a player was.


        • Quirk

          I like the stat too, I think it’s unfortunate that it’s proponents use it for bogus lists as this most overpaid list, and constant harp about players like Bargnani and Evans that are outliers in the metric. This implies a level of valuation accuracy at the edges that is extremely unlikely to be useful. Even though I do not disagree with the general result that Bargnani is not productive while Evans is.

        • cesco

          ‘shooting efficiency is the most important variable in the stat’ . Nearly all centers score from near the basket , thus a higher efficiency . Isn’t Andrea efficiency weighed against the average center efficiency in WP ? . If so , his WP score suffer from the fact he is a non-conventional center , shooting from all over the place .

          • Statement

            Ya, I would think so.

            But then that raises the question, if he is inefficient relative to his peers (and thus the team is getting less efficiency from the centre position), why not go a different route by getting an efficient centre?  This would of course shift Bargs to PF.

            Bargs is probably at decent efficiency for power forwards, but he loses any and all advantage if he is guarding them.  He was actually a pretty decent man defender (I think synergy sports showed this) and obviously he would still be a terrible rebounder and team defender if he was a power forward and he would lose his post defense, which is his strength.

            Basically, he shouldn’t be playing major minutes and it is going to be a mistake IMHO, if he is shifted to power forward to take minutes away from Amir and Ed.

            • Theswirsky

              Bargnani is below the league average for shooting %.  If one looks at just PF and C then its even worse.

              Ofcourse he plays more away from the bucket which will always bring odwn fg%… but rather than debate how that effects his % it should raise the question “should he be (jump) shooting as much”?… which to me the answer is a clear no.

              Its like saying “this PG just doesn’t get as many assists because he doesn’t pass the ball as much”.  Rather than debate why his assists are low based on his style, it should be questioning his style itself.

              Bargnani should be jump shooting less and posting up/driving more. 

              • cesco

                Andrea is needed to spread the floor and he goes to the rim (3.6 shoots) and from 9 feet or less (2.7 shoots) per game  . Dirk takes 2.4 + 1.5 shoots from those distances . I don’t think Casey will ask him to go to the net more often , we have DD ,JJ , and the other big for that .

                • Theswirsky

                  which in turn should mean he should shoot less. 

                • cesco

                  He probably will as the youngsters are upping their scoring (we hope) .

      • Quirk

        Hi TheSwirsky, as mentioned, the problem is a lack of efficiency stats for rebounds causes the metric to misvalue individual rebounds, meaning that closer the players rebound totals are to the norms at his position, the more reliable the results are. 
        Yes, WP tells you Bargnani is not a very productive player, and Evans is productive, which is useful, but because they are outliers the result is way exaggerated and thus to use it for “most overpaid” calculations is simply a bogus use of the metric, that only serves to make the entire metric seem nonsensical, which it isn’t, it’s unfortunate that it’s proponents seem to invite ridicule and dismissal by constantly misusing in this way.

        It’s not so much that WP is better at identifying marginal vs normal ones, just that the lack of efficiency stats for rebounds causes it to misvalue “normal” players that are closer to the norm at rebounding for their position less than that it misvalues outliers.

        Imagine a scoring stat that only looked at point totals and ignored efficiency stats, like missed shots? That would really misvalue players that either took less shots or missed lots of shots right, and would make low percentage volume shooters look great, right? Same with rebounds. WP does not incorporate any numbers on rebounding efficiency.

        • Theswirsky

          well I understand that… but really the only stat (within WP) that provides ‘efficiency’ is shooting (including FTs).  So there is no missed Rebounding stat, no missed steals stat, no missed block stat, no missed turnover stat, and no missed assist stat.  So its not limited to just rebounding.

          To me the issue with rebounding is that it is probably the ‘easier’ statistic to produce (although maybe not physically.. but thats neither here nor there).  Almost anyone can (should be able) to do it at a reasonable rate…. and there are probably alot more ‘good’ players that overachieve at it than underachieve.  So while it may make the overachieving WP players (K. Love, Reggie, Rodman etc) look better by a pure function of them being able to collect alot of rebounds at an ‘easier’ rate than other statistics, that should be a very damning statement of players who don’t rebound at a fair rate.  (ie. if good rebounders are overvalued, are poor rebounders actually undervalued?)

          The one thing I will say though, I’d wager that almost all the players that overachive due to Reb., probably also have a ridiculously high rebounding rate (ie. reb%) compared to the league… which when you think about it (and take this with a grain on salt because its an on the spot theory), each rebound means one new possession and one missed possession for your opponents.  If 1 possession = 1 pt (which is what it approx what the league averages), thats 1 point for your team and -1 for the opposition… which would, technically, be valued at 2 pts per rebound.     

          • Lack of efficiency stats is an problem across the board, however as rebounds are weighted very heavily in WP, the lack of efficiency here is particularly skewing.

            Its not that good rebounders are overvalued and poor ones are undervalued, it’s the more total rebounds deviate from normal rates, the more they are likely to be misvalued. Weather over or under is not clear, and requires analysis based on factors other than WP.

            The trouble is that team rebounds correlate to wins, not individual rebounds, and without efficiency stats it’s impossible to know what the players net effect on team rebounds actually is.

            For example, their is no dispute that Rodman is a great rebounder. The year before Rodman arrives, the Bulls had 3400 rebounds, In Rodman’s best year with the Bulls (97-98), he grabbed 1201 and the team totaled 3681, hauling in nearly a third of the teams to help the total just under 3.5 more rebounds per game. Not bad. I suppose you might be able to say that whatever 3.5 rebounds means in wins could be attributed to Rodman.

            But wait. 

            Interestingly, the year before (96-97), Rodman only played 55 games, grabbing 883 rebounds, yet the Bulls totaled more, 3696. Odd, no? 

            So it seems they where a pretty good rebounding team with or without Dennis in the lineup. Funny then, that this good rebounding team, that hauled in 2813 rebounds (subtracting Rodman’s) in 96-97, only grabbed 2480 when he played 80 games, in other words the rest of the team became much worse than before Rodman was on the team, despite the fact that 3 of the best rebounders from that 94-95 team where still on the team: Pippen, Kukoc and Longley. 

            Did they all suddenly get worse? Or are rebounds created and “assisted” by team play in a way that individual rebound totals do not show? 

            In any case, since the regression that WP uses comes from the correlation between team wins and team rebounds, and since great individual rebounders do not necessarily seem to significantly improve team rebounds, it’s not clear that you can accurately assign an individual “wins produced” based on individual rebounds. 

            The WP community is always (correctly) pointing out that high scoring totals do not necessarily mean a player is productive, but seem to accept high rebound totals without question, even when the calculation produces ludicrous results, such as attributing Reggie Evens with historic levels of productivity. Odd.

            • Statement

              good point

            • Theswirsky

              I just want to mention:


              the 3 most notorious WP ‘overachievers’ (Reggie, K.Love, and Humphries) are also 3 of the 4 most efficient rebounders in the league.  So if the question is about efficiency… well those guys are efficient rebounders.  Does that not mean that maybe those guys are valued a little more accurately than we would like to believe?

              Also here


              (better spot to debate the value of rebounding to WP)

              Again I want to note, WP shouldn’t be used as an absolute.  As with any stat its imperfect as all variables can not be collected and analyzed (its simply not reasonable).  So one doesn’t need to believe that K.Love is actually the best player in the league… what we should be asking is, is he one of the best players in the league?  I’d find it hard to say no.  Or even further… if you look at the top 10/25/50 guys, how many of them can you say with an absolute don’t deserve to be there?  

              And even more specifically to this discussion, does WP overvalue rebounding?  Probably.  BUT more importantly does it overvalue it to a degree that WP shouldn’t be used or considered unreliable?  To me not at all. 



              • Quirk

                > “Again I want to note, WP shouldn’t be used as an absolute.”
                This is exactly the point that I am making, if it should not be used as an “absolute” then using it to add 9.5 million to Bargnani’s Salary is nonsensical. 

                Declaring him the second most overpaid player in the league, based on a calculated salary he doesn’t actually receive is totally bogus and serves only to make the WP community look ridiculous for posting such bunk. 

                As I have said: *I like WP* — And from your messages we agree about how to understand it. Unfortunately the WP community seem to really, really, really believe in the absolute result of their immaculate calculation.  Which is why the seem to spend most of their time posting about outliers like Bargnani and Evans and making “Overpaid” lists. Exercises which often produce ludicrous results and highlight the weakness of their calculation, instead of it’s strengths.

                The Overpaid list is a mockery that demonstrates very well exactly how //not// to use WP or any statistic.

                If this was some demented journalist getting carried away with a stat, fair enough, but this list is actually published by the main proponent of WP, Dave Berri! 

                Using WP to take a player who is being paid 8.5 million and convert him to being paid 18 million and then declare him “overpaid” is simple garbage.

                It reminds of a childhood game. Let’s play here online. Play along?

                1- Think of a Number, any number!
                2- Add 3
                3- Add 5
                4- Subtract 2
                5- Subtract your original number
                6- Double the current total


                Now I need to enter my psychic trance. Have no fear!

                Oombaloombaboomba ba ba ba ba oomph! blagoban. BA OOMPH.

                You are thinking about the number 20!

                Yeah! I’M FREAKIN’ KRESKIN!

                See what I did there? (Tip: note step 5) 

                Now consider that Bargnani would be in the top-20 on Berri’s “Overpaid” list even if he WASN’T PAID AT ALL  and you’ll see the connection.

                • Quirk

                  Actually, I was possessed by evil spirits who misled me. Now that I’ve escaped their spell and actually had a coffee I realize the number you where really thinking about was 12. Sorry for any confusion and please remember to throw a pinch of dryer lint over your left shoulder after playing this game, just to be safe. BA OOMPH.

        • Statement

          Rebounding is compared to league average in WP, no?  If so, isn’t that a measure, albeit a very crude one, of gauging how adept one is at securing rebounds relative to his peers?  

          Following Theswirsky below, 1 rebound = 1 point for you, on average, and -1 point for the other team on average.  Given this, one can see why Bargs scores out so crappy on this metric.

          • Statement

            gauging how adept one is at securing rebounds relative to his peers?….thus indicating rebouding “efficiency”

            • Quirk

              No, this doesn’t tell you about efficiency. Consider scoring. Simply considering scoring total to league average, without looking at shots taken would not tell you much about efficiency.

              • Statement

                “without looking at shots taken would not tell you much about efficiency”. 

                You are definitely right about that and I understand what you are saying.  I was just suggesting that it would be a crude measure of efficiency.  I wonder why rebound rate isn’t used in the regression, I think he uses rebs/48.

          • mountio

            I think Ive had this argument on here before – but I think the argument would be perfectly logical if all rebounds were offensive rebounds (ie you are TRULY creating a new possession for your team). Defensive rebounds on missed free throws, for example, or lazy shots where no one is hitting the offensive boards, could often be picked up by anyone, so the person doing it isnt really creating a possession any more than his next closest rebounding teammate (who happens to let him grab the ball) is.
            Anyways – you could argue the technical merits of this until the cows come home, but the fact that Reggie / Love are rated so high (ie not higher than AB, but higher than LBJ, DW, DH, etc.) tells me that rebounding is overvalued (and by extension, poor rebounding is overly penalized). Doesnt mean the stat is useless .. just means it needs to be taken with a grain of salt …

          • mountio

            I think Ive had this argument on here before – but I think the argument would be perfectly logical if all rebounds were offensive rebounds (ie you are TRULY creating a new possession for your team). Defensive rebounds on missed free throws, for example, or lazy shots where no one is hitting the offensive boards, could often be picked up by anyone, so the person doing it isnt really creating a possession any more than his next closest rebounding teammate (who happens to let him grab the ball) is.
            Anyways – you could argue the technical merits of this until the cows come home, but the fact that Reggie / Love are rated so high (ie not higher than AB, but higher than LBJ, DW, DH, etc.) tells me that rebounding is overvalued (and by extension, poor rebounding is overly penalized). Doesnt mean the stat is useless .. just means it needs to be taken with a grain of salt …

          • mountio

            I think Ive had this argument on here before – but I think the argument would be perfectly logical if all rebounds were offensive rebounds (ie you are TRULY creating a new possession for your team). Defensive rebounds on missed free throws, for example, or lazy shots where no one is hitting the offensive boards, could often be picked up by anyone, so the person doing it isnt really creating a possession any more than his next closest rebounding teammate (who happens to let him grab the ball) is.
            Anyways – you could argue the technical merits of this until the cows come home, but the fact that Reggie / Love are rated so high (ie not higher than AB, but higher than LBJ, DW, DH, etc.) tells me that rebounding is overvalued (and by extension, poor rebounding is overly penalized). Doesnt mean the stat is useless .. just means it needs to be taken with a grain of salt …

            • Statement

              Good call.

              I too think that WP is too harsh on Bargs, but you can’t be a historically bad rebounder for your position and be helping your team in that area. 

            • Theswirsky

              mountio…we may have had half this discussion before. 

              But I guess I want to comment on it (again). Whats important to a rebound (statistically speaking anyways) is that you got it and the opposition didn’t.  Same applies to any stats or any situation.  Those accidental buckets that bounce off the defense’s hand/head and go in, still count as a fg.  The steals that are a result of PG losing control of the ball and go into the defenders hands still count as a steal and it still gives you the ball.

              It doesn’t matter how a rebound happened… what matters is it did.  So when you grab a rebound (regardless of how difficult or easy it was to do), it is still one possession for your team (therefore an opportunity to score), and one less for the opposition (and therefore one less opportunity to score).  It doesn’t make a difference if its offensive or defensives or on a FT.  Each of those situations the other team still has a chance to rebound the ball (just a better chance in some situations than others)

              • mountio

                See Quirk’s discussion on team rebounding vs individual above. It is very logical and well written. Goes to my point that individual rebounds (ie who takes the missed FT) are not indicative of success. Total team rebounds, of course, are. We have gone through this before, but perhaps a read of Quirk above will sway you, as frankly, I think he puts it better than I ever have.

                • Theswirsky

                  I’m not necessarily disagreeing with that.  But his discussion on rebounding and mine above (in the previous response to you) are 2 totally different things.

                  In this case I’m looking at rebounding purely as a measure of possessions… his is its value within WP

                • mountio

                  Ya – but its actually the same point. An individual rebound on doesnt necessarily add possession, as many of them (like a FT) would have been grabbed by somone on the team and its irrelevant to team succcess who grabs it (as a whole, yes, the team rebounds add a possession .. but the broad discussion here is whether individual rebounds (as measured in WP/48) are an accurate measure of a players’ contribution to team success.) On the other hand, offensive rebounds, are very rarely fall into the hands of two offensive players and one has to choose who grabs it (like FTs or a number of defensive rebounds) – so I would argue they are a much better indicator of that individual’s contribution to team success.
                  As a result, looking at individual rebounds, and claiming that that one particular player is resonable for the team’s extra possesion is misleading .. as its often not the case.

                  Also – to add to the above, note that less than 30% of K Love’s rebounds are offensive, for example, so the variability based on his 10+ def rebounds / game could be considerable.

                • Theswirsky

                  “many of them (like a FT) would have been grabbed by somone on the team”

                  would they? have you never seen a player get an offensive rebound on a FT?  So to say a teammate WOULD HAVE gotten it is not true.  Is a defensive player more likely to get a rebound than an offensive player?  Probably… but that hardly means either player will get it.  What matters is who did get it, and therefore who didn’t get it aswell (ie. the opposition). 

                  .. you are mixing up two thoughts here.  Quirks – that rebounds are overvalued in WP (ie. individual rebounding doesn’t mean team rebounding, and its team rebounding that relates to success) And the discussion here… that a rebound (any rebound) means a new possession.  Unless I’m completely missing something Quirk is saying they are seperate thoughts in the same thread.

                • mountio

                  you arent mixing things .. but your conclusion about a rebound creating a possession is meaningless unless you relate it back to the original discussion about individual rebounds showing that the player who rebounded created that possession.
                  Ive said many times, the teams that get more rebounds than other teams obviously have an advantage as a team. This is undeniable. The question is whether that guy who racks up the individual rebounding stats is “creating the possession” themself. Read the link you sent where the guys, while defending WP48, acknoledge the argument that a defensive rebound can be constued as less valuabale than an offensive rebound. They then rerun their numbers to show it doesnt change teh conclusion, but none the less, they seem to acknowledge what Im saying ..

          • Quirk

            Trouble is one rebound for a given player does not correlate to one rebound for the team, as explained above.

  • onemanweave

      Interesting to see Barbosa’s name on the pop-for-a-penny list. Perhaps those wanting to lock up this treasure for multiple years might re-consider.
       He’ll help next year. He adds juice off the bench.  By the time the team needs someone like LB, he won’t be.  The really top notch quality that he brings to the team is, he isn’t Hedo.

  • Johnn19

    The only important Bargnani stat that is important is TEAM wins. When he played last year and scored 24 points and 6 rebounds per the Raptors won 19 games, as a team, and won only 3 games as a team, when he did not play. That is his true contribution to WINS. 

    The reasons for only 22 wins are many, and varied and not totally dependent on individuals.

    Everything else is everyones attemp to estimate statistics for individual contributions to a game that is dependent on 5 man interactive play to reach a result, very different than other sports.

    Player’s salaries are dependent on the CBA and market conditions, as well as for individual  contributions to team success.

    Success for this group is not related to last year results, as BC has recognised that the next step requires a different approach and voice with the hiring of Dwane Casey with a defensive priority put on the organization to improve. It is now a wait and see, who will the next 4/5 players added to the 10 existing contracts be, and how will Casey improve the defensive core.

    • pran

      not according to our new coach, who if you look a couple of  RR articles back, thinks advanced stats are very important.

      • Quirk

        Umm, where did I say that advanced stats are not important?

        • Quirk

          Plz Delete, wrong thread.

    • pran

      not according to our new coach, who if you look a couple of  RR articles back, thinks advanced stats are very important.

    • Steve

      Nicely Said.

    • BCGheradiniJayGots2Go!!!

      AB & winning NBA games are not tangible

      • GermanWunderkind

        Wrong. You mean Raptors and winning without AB.

  • arsenalist

    The stat of concern is the following one:

    Speaks to how poorly the Raptors spend their money.

    • Paradigm Shift

      ….. and the Mavs, who do not fair much better on this metric

  • Theswirsky

     “The NBA champ Mavs were certainly not very frugal in their spending though but the end result seems to have justified the expense”

    the Mavs had the highest pay roll in the league… you can’t expect that to result in good value very often (especially because, I believe, its only takes regular season into consideration). orlando (#2 payroll) ranked 18th, LAL (#3) 14th, Utah (#4) 29

    The Raps are a $0.25 rotten apple.  The Mavs are picture perfect apple… but it costs $100.  Either way you aren’t going to get good value

  • guest

    At one time or another, the Raps have paid 6 of those contracts …..

    (Bargs, Peja, TJ, Barbosa, Kapono, JO)

    And BC actually gave 3 of them!!!

  • Bargnani is really good at something you don’t normally need from someone at his position. He’s like the girl you don’t really like who knows how to perform an oil change. The only reason you keep her around is because you want to save $45 every 3-4 months.

    • Juicey

      Eh, you can get an oil change for $20, I say ship her out!

  • John

    This is a bit stupid. Who ever watched Raptors game last season and followed the team knows that Raptors won more game with AB in the line up versus him sitting out. Simple as that. 

    • Nilanka15

      The same can be said about Reggie Evans.  It doesn’t mean he’s needed on this team.

      • Steve

        Simply not true. God Bless internet when you can come out and lie this easily. If you look at the game we won with AB in the line up and Evans out VS games with AB out and Evans in the line up, then you can see we won more games in the first case.

        the numbers are all there for people to look at . Plus, Evans played great and was the 2nd best rebounder on league when he was healthy !!! he is not needed in this team because he is passed his prime. If Evans was 25 , Amir would be out of the more in the matter of seconds in favor of Evans.

        Get your facts straight.

        • Nilanka15

          Wow dude, calm down.  How many more games did AB play vs. Evans?  Did you account for that?

          The original post was implying that since the Raptors won more games with AB than without AB, that he’s somehow a valuable piece to this team moving forward, which isn’t true.  22 wins is hardly a large sample size.  If we finished with a record of 1-81 instead, with that one win coming with Bargnani in the lineup, would you conclude that Bargnani is condusive to winning?  Of course not.  Using the win-loss record to determine a single player’s worth is illogical because of the plethora of other factors involved to win games.

        • Would it not be appropriate to review factors like strength of schedule, opponent injuries, home vs away and other factors during those periods?

    • Statement


      You are a little off base.  As Nilanka said, the Raps had a relatively good record with Reggie Evans (Regae Even!) but the small sample size issue rears its head in both Reggie’s and Andrea’s case.  Too few games to chalk any record up to anything more than randomness.

      Just for the record, 82games has Andrea having a -4.9 net PER (his minus opponent’s) and being worth -2.6 points/100 possessions last year.

      Doesn’t sound like he was helping.

      For the record, Evans was .3 in net PER and -3.9 points/100 possessions, so he didn’t help much either.

      Who did?  Amir Johnson of course with a 2.2 net PER and +6.9 points/100 possessions.  Let’s let him play the lion’s share of minutes. 

  • It seems quite obvious that wages of wins overvalues rebounds, and so it shouldn’t be a shock that a terrible rebounder gets poorly rated by it.

    Wages of Wins’ other problem is that NBA team performance varies far more widely than their salaries–the good teams in the NBA tend to win 60 games, the bad teams 15 games, so the good teams win 4x more often; whereas the highest salaried team paid $96 million, and the lowest salaried team $42 million, so the highest salaried team paid only twice as much as the lowest.  As such the worst performing teams look worse than they should, thanks to funky salary cap math.

    (On a further note, it makes little sense for rebuilding teams to waste reams of empty cap space for years when they can take on bad contracts from high-salaried teams with good draft picks/solid prospects attached.  This artificially inflates the salaries of poor teams when they weren’t expecting anything from player X’s $10 million in the first place and were essentially buying a draft pick.)

    Now all of that said, none of this changes the fact that Bargnani did not earn his salary last season, and that the Raptors were a terrible team.

  • EuroPussy

    This stat is simply bullshit if we don’t consider the teams. Can you honestly compare HOU or CLE with TOR?? Come one be serious. Every day the same Bargsblaming thread, every day. Guys the summer is long and the lockout too, this is boring.

    • Theswirsky

      you do know that this statistic was created well before Bargnani even existed right? (he just in some ways became the poster boy for it) 

      Where is Bargnani being ‘blamed’?  Whats he being blamed for? 

      And why can’t you compare Houston or Cleveland with Toronto?

      • EuroPussy

        This stat simply says nothing without a correct examination (?), thats why i cannot understand that sooooo many stat are such important for the us-sports.

        • Theswirsky

          so whats the “correct examination”?

          • GermanWunderkind

            Puh think my english is not good enough.. I mean, a stat shows only numbers, if you have the best player in the world (i don’t say Bargs is it) in your team but all the others play like me, than your team will lose all the games. Is the best player in the world a looser or inefficient? I think no! Is Bargs inefficient and overpaid? No i don’t think, but this team was TOGETHER inefficient. Hope you understand what i try to explane..

            • Theswirsky

              Lebron James last in his final year in Cleveland had, what was shown the following year, one of the worst teams in the league beside him.  2nd worst record in the league and a new franchise sport consecutive losing streak 26(?) games.   Yet with Lebron they were a 60 win team.

              Kevin Love was on the worst team in the league last year… do you see his name anywhere near the bottom of this list?

              Jose/Amir/Ed play on the same team as Bargnani, yet all of them are considered (to varying degrees) underpaid or well paid contracts.

              I think these are serious problems with your “its everyone else” theory. 

              But yes this team is overpaid (as a whole)… which is a problem and what Arse posted above.  Is that ALL Bargnani? No ofcourse not.  No one said it was.  But is he part of the problem?  Yep.  A big part.

              • GermanWunderkind

                Hmm of course the most people here say AB is THE problem in this team, i say the coaching was the first problem, the poor shooting ability an bb iq of some player were the problem and of course a -little- part AB (reb. and defense). But -in my small and nonsignificant opinion- he is the best player of this team. Overpaid? Oh no, we call that in german “Schmerzensgeld” that means compensation for personal pain. lol

    • Haaa

       mannn youre dumb. hows bargnani’s pussy taste?

      • EuroPussy

        lol why do you offend me?
        Normally only people without any explanation do that. good luck surching for your brain.

      • RapthoseLeafs

        He’s getting a lot more than you are or can.

  • Bigbalboski79

    mark my words, bargani will be an all-star next season (whenever that is).  and the yahoos on this site demanding we throw him away for a ball and pair of sneakers will be claiming they knew all along that casey would fix/cover his defencive issues.

    seriously, how long can make the same point over and over?

    • BCGheradiniJayGots2Go!!!

      The 7’1 250 pound AB aka ‘No Star’ will be an All Star next season?

      In what League- The Primo Pasta Basketball Association?lol

      Now that he’s moving to PF he will never have a legit chance to be an All Star PF in the East in the near future as the East is loaded up on past & present All Star level PFs and 21ppg on 17.8 shots per game while shooting 44% from the field along with only 2 double doubles won’t cut it on a 22 win type of team.

      No one is saying trade AB for a ball & sneakers, I believe that most people want quality talent and/or draft picks in exchange for AB- recognize, but his lazy ass has to go as we already have Ed Davis & Amir Johnson at the PF position.

      Ever since AB played a part in getting Sam fired then played solid for a few weeks afterwards before falling back inot his inconsistent lethargical ways I have not like the cut of his jib- a change of scenery could do both Rap’s fans & AB some good as I’m tired of seeing him in a Rap’s uniform.

      By BC continuing to build around AB- at least now BC admits it in the media, he is setting the Rap’s Franchise back in years- str8 up & down this isn’t any circus but we (fans) have just been clowned.

      • Dumbo

        …rofl… You are really funny, honestly you are the best entertainer ever.

      • Bigbalboski79

        you speak of sam mitchel as if he is phil jackson. he aint won shit in terms of titles, just a COY award, and btwe nobody has hired him since?  hmmm?  maybe mr colangelo knows something you dont???  ed davis will be a rotation player for another year.  bargs will give other PFs in the league probs with his range out to threeland.  and his shooting should improve once he is not trying to be something he isnt:  a centre.

        • BCGheradiniJayGots2Go!!!

          Under BC the only coach to win the Atlantic Division Title & take the Rap’s to the playoffs….name please- Sam Mitchell.

          Sam is currently the lead assistant in New Jersey under Avery Johnson.

          Mr Colangelo?lmfao Bryan needs to cut ticket prices ASAP especially during a so called ‘rebuild’ as who wants to pay top dollar for a wholesale product?

          Ed should be starting next season at PF for the Rap’s- whenever that is, with Amir backing him up. I really hope that Ed & Amir go at Barg’s ass in training camp and punk him for trying to take 1 of their PF spots like a big 7’1 250 sissy!!!!

          Barg’s won’t do shit as a PF except continue to be a lazy ass moo’fer while floating on the perimeter. AB is a SG- str8 up.

          Fyi- there is very little difference between a Center and PF (Center is usually the bigger of the two) as- ‘a big is a big’ (Jack Armstrong voice) in fact the Rap’s defense will be worse with AB at PF especially in transition.

          Btw- the biggest player on the Raptors team isn’t a center- wow, and it took only 5 years for BC & AB to come up with that PR spin to sell to Rap’s fans?lmfao

          Bargnani is a cancer growth on the Rap’s roster keeping the lockerroom split- point blank!

      • Whyisntthisdouchebanned

        i love your obsession with andrea. maybe if you redistribute some of your concern over to the fact that demar cant hit a 3 to save his life, people wouldnt think you were such a lame troll….seriously.demars a worse 3 pt shooter/shooter as a sg/sf then bargs is a rebounder at c. this TEAM has issues. you continuing with your lame 10 person strong witchhunt is beyond foolish. people im friends with and work with with are clear as day in stating that bargnani is our most talented player. your hood rat surroundings and low iq friends keep crying….waaaa u dont like bargnani..waaaaa.damn… u parrots keep chripin, they aint getting no crackers. now be a good bird and STFU… im a raptor fan first and i think bargs game is improving and i hope the rest of players improve as well. your bullshit is hilarious.

  • Dtayew

    Pics or it didn’t happened