a) The writer acknowledges that the results for a few players are going to be skewed, or
b) We can explain the statistical input and how it leads to the results for a few players being skewed,
this does not make the methodology/process okay. At all. In fact quite the opposite - while full-well recognizing that the process would churn out some wonky results, the writer went ahead without making any adjustments, which they easily could have done.
Here's my metaphor:
A production line is being set up for an auto assembly plant. The line will produce four different trim levels for a certain vehicle. Given all the variables of robotics, personnel, materials, etc. they've estimated that three of the trim lines will produce vehicles that meet quality standards 99% of the time, but the fourth trim line will be produced with upside-down doors 30% of the time. But since those responsible for setting up the line are aware of the flaw, everybody is okay with it. It's been reported to senior management that
a) The facilities and processes we've constructed here are going to install upside-down doors 30% of the time for one of four trim lines, but we're aware of that so it's okay, and
b) We can break down all the inputs, data, equipment, materials, etc. dynamics and explain how everything works, therefore it's okay to have some upside-down doors come off the line every once in a while.
As for those declaring that you must accept all the results of these ESPN articles or reject them all (ex. you can't accept Lowry's placing and reject DeRozan's, apparently), that's like an engineer responding to an objection re: upside-down doors with "Hey, if you don't like some of the cars this line is producing, then you don't like any of them! You can't pick and choose satisfactory results on a whim - take 'em all or leave 'em all!" which would be, of course, patently ridiculous.
This is a lot of chatter about a couple ESPN articles, but it is the summer and they are paid writers with a national platform. I'd argue they owe it to their customers (and sports fans in general) to produce more thoughtful content than this.