View Poll Results: Grade Bargnani's game.

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  • A

    9 7.03%
  • B

    47 36.72%
  • C

    30 23.44%
  • D

    19 14.84%
  • F

    23 17.97%
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Thread: Everything Bargnani: The Legend Continues

  1. #5501
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    Quote ezz_bee wrote: View Post
    Sure. But what about the stats? I may be wrong but I believe you have said that "bargs being a good on the ball defender is one of the biggest bargnani myths out there" or something to that effect. As someone who believes that you need stats to back up your argument I would have thought that you'd have a little more sophisticated of a rebuttal than that. Poor form.
    There's nothing wrong with the stats... but rather is the specificity of them, the lack of comparison's and his conclusion.

    For instance:

    "In the 205 times he was posted up last season, Bargnani held his opponent to just 182 points (0.888 PPP) on just 46.8% shooting"

    Ok sounds good, but how does that compare to the league? To other starting C's (or bigs)? This accounts only for when he is specifically posted up, and it also doesn't account for who is doing the posting up. (remember he always got the easier cover).


    "When faced with isolation situations, Bargnani is in the top 17% of the NBA in terms of Points Per Possession (PPP) allowed, giving up just 0.684 points per possession on 29.7% shooting"

    ok now we a number that offers a comparison, but how many times did that happen? How often did the team not send help? Again, who is this isolation against.... Ryan Hollins/Brandon Bass/Chuck Hayes/Biendrins?


    "but he is able to go straight up and use his length to contest shots without fouling (fouled opponents on the block just 7.6% of the time) by going straight up."

    I'd argue his lack of fouling is an indictment of how bad his defense is. Good/smart defensive players use their fouls. Good hard foul and 2 fts > dunk or lay up in my books.

    Then the authors conclusion is Bargnani is a terrible help defender, Bargnani is a terrible rebounder (which is a defensive attribute), but he is not a terrible one-on-one defender (and it was only in post situations that the author tried to "prove" it). Therefore Bargnani is not a terrible defender? That Bargnani can be a good or average defender going forward if moved to PF (where he will play less post defense no less).

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    This is Bleacher Report... right?

    .. Should be enough said.
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    Quote joey_hesketh wrote: View Post
    This is Bleacher Report... right?

    .. Should be enough said.
    It's not, it's Sebastian Pruiti (and that's quite something else); see my post.

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    Quote Soft Euro wrote: View Post
    It's not, it's Sebastian Pruiti (and that's quite something else); see my post.
    Hmmm ... indeed. Good catch. Well then perhaps I re-read it with a less cynical eye.
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    Quote joey_hesketh wrote: View Post
    Hmmm ... indeed. Good catch. Well then perhaps I re-read it with a less cynical eye.
    Good idea

    What I (almost) always miss in these advanced stats posts is some kind of more 'advanced' and weighted factor (if you call it like that in English). You get, as in this case, some opponents ppp thrown at you, but that would be much more interesting to me if the level of competition was incorporated in the stats. That should not be that hard, a matter of taking the opponents normal ppp in those situations and basing the stat on the difference instead of just a basic number. Maybe even factor in the number of shots in a situation taken (e.g. for post play) in relation to their average number of shots taken in those situations. That's still only an indication because there are so many other factors in play in a game (or even a single possession). For instance, if a team plays a lot of help defense on post up situations, e.g. where a guard comes over when the ball is put on the floor, that probably means the player posting up won't be nearly as effective in ppp in those situations. I have no idea how and if they factor those things in in some advanced stats; I guess a lot of it isn't factored in because basketball simply isn't an easy game to put everything in stats.

    Still, these stats are at least interesting.

  6. #5506
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    I'm normally a big fan of Pruiti's work but I think he got this one wrong. He's basically saying that because there's one single aspect of defense that Bargnani does at an adequate level, that the notion of Bargnani being a terrible defender is a myth. Huh?

    According to him, the defensive "strength" of Bargnani is one on one defense in the post. But he also says that it only happened 205 times all of last season, which roughly averages out to 2.5 possessions per night where Bargnani gets posted up on the block. That means that there's 40-50 other possessions on any given night where Bargnani is on the floor and is being asked to do things that he's extremely poor at (help side defense, rebounding, recovering to his man). What should we be giving more weight to? The 2-3 plays a night where Bargnani does an average job? Or literally EVERY OTHER DEFENSIVE PLAY where he performs well below an acceptable level? I'd say the latter.

    Plus it's been mentioned by a few others but there's certain things that can't be measured by stats. The boost in confidence of Bargnani's match up is one. The loss of confidence from Bargnani's teammates is another.

    I don't think I've ever seen a defender look as clueless as Bargnani does on a regular basis, which in a nutshell explains why I dont think he'll ever get it, no matter who he's surrounded with or who is coaching him. Bargs has heard 10,000 times since he came to the NBA that defense is important, how he should be focusing on this end, etc. etc. and yet you can still count on him for a dozen plays every night where he's in his own little world out there, staring blankly into space while his man scores or someone zooms past him for a rebound. I seriously think there may be a disconnect in his brain that prevents him from being a competent defender.
    Last edited by Fully; Mon Jul 25th, 2011 at 10:22 AM.

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    Quote Fully wrote: View Post
    I'm normally a big fan of Pruiti's work but I think he got this one wrong. He's basically saying that because there's one single aspect of defense that Bargnani does at an adequate level, that the notion of Bargnani being a terrible defender is a myth. Huh?

    According to him, the defensive "strength" of Bargnani is one on one defense in the post. But he also says that it only happened 205 times all of last season, which roughly averages out to 2.5 possessions per night where Bargnani gets posted up on the block. That means that there's 40-50 other possessions on any given night where Bargnani is on the floor and is being asked to do things that he's extremely poor at (help side defense, rebounding, recovering to his man). What should we be giving more weight to? The 2-3 plays a night where Bargnani does an average job? Or literally EVERY OTHER DEFENSIVE PLAY where he performs well below an acceptable level? I'd say the latter.

    Plus it's been mentioned by a few others but there's certain things that can't be measured by stats. The boost in confidence of Bargnani's match up is one. The loss of confidence from Bargnani's teammates is another.

    I don't think I've ever seen a defender look as clueless as Bargnani does on a regular basis, which in a nutshell explains why I dont think he'll ever get it, no matter who he's surrounded with or who is coaching him. Bargs has heard 10,000 times since he came to the NBA that defense is important, how he should be focusing on this end, etc. etc. and yet you can still count on him for a dozen plays every night where he's in his own little world out there, staring blankly into space while his man scores or someone zooms past him for a rebound. I seriously think there may be a disconnect in his brain that prevents him from being a competent defender.
    You're absolutely right, but for the sake of completeness the article said he was good in every one on one sitution except spot up shooting, not just post defense. The first bit talked about the post up thing and the second talked about isolation. It doesn't mention pick and roll, but maybe that is included in the other two since you will probably end up guarding the roller (post) or the ball handler (iso). It's also a massive exageration to say he screws up on every defensive play where he is off ball, he just screws up way too much to be effective and other teams try to abuse it.

    It's incredibly flawed because it makes no sense. It's a completely illogical argument. And that's without getting into any statistical analysis.
    You always call people out when they make a statement without explaining themselves. You're probably right that his argument doesn't make sense, but why doesn't it? Did you mean that the stats he uses aren't meaningful or that the argument that being ok in one on one situations is not enough to offset his help defense weakness?
    Last edited by hateslosing; Mon Jul 25th, 2011 at 11:15 AM.
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  8. #5508
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    Quote hateslosing wrote: View Post
    You're absolutely right, but for the sake of completeness the article said he was good in every one on one sitution except spot up shooting, not just post defense. The first bit talked about the post up thing and the second talked about isolation. It doesn't mention pick and roll, but maybe that is included in the other two since you will probably end up guarding the roller (post) or the ball handler (iso). It's also a massive exageration to say he screws up on every defensive play where he is off ball, he just screws up way too much to be effective and other teams try to abuse it.



    You always call people out when they make a statement without explaining themselves. You're probably right that his argument doesn't make sense, but why doesn't it? Did you mean that the stats he uses aren't meaningful or that the argument that being ok in one on one situations is not enough to offset his help defense weakness?
    I feel like there's some important data that isn't being shown in some of these stats. If Bargnani is defending a pick and roll and his man ends up receiving a pass at the rim for a dunk, is that considered a post up? What about if Bargnani's man grabs an offensive board and goes up for a quick put back? If they are considered post ups, then surely there was more than 205 of these scenarios involving Bargnani last season. If they aren't considered post ups, and I'm assuming they aren't because of such a low count, then we're missing a large piece of data that would probably discredit Pruiti's orginal article. Plus his "isolation" defence is a little misleading considering that most centers aren't going to be given the ball at the hash marks and asked make a one on one move, especially when Bargs is usually covering the less dangerous of the two offensive big men.

    And no, Bargnani doesn't screw up on every single play off the ball, but I'd argue that his lack of defensive rebounding and help side awareness effects EVERY single defensive possession that he's on the floor for, whether that negative effect can be quanitifed or not. I'm a fan of advanced statistics but they will often leave out part of the story because basketball is a sport that depends on 5 players working together as a unit.
    Last edited by Fully; Mon Jul 25th, 2011 at 01:31 PM.

  9. #5509
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    Quote hateslosing wrote: View Post
    You always call people out when they make a statement without explaining themselves. You're probably right that his argument doesn't make sense, but why doesn't it? Did you mean that the stats he uses aren't meaningful or that the argument that being ok in one on one situations is not enough to offset his help defense weakness?
    There are certain fundamental problems with the argument. The first being that Bargnani defended the opponent's weakest frontcourt player the majority of the time, so the raw stat of PPP doesn't work. What would be more informative is how much Bargnani allowed the offensive player to score above or below his seasonal averages. If he's guarding the weakest frontcourt player, his raw defensive stats are going to be inflated.

    In isolation situations, other players help defense is EXTREMELY important, and in whenever Bargnani gets isolated, Raptor players tend to hedge to help him, making it more difficult for his man to score on him.

    The most egregious error in the argument, though, is assuming that because he is "not bad" in two areas it means he is not a bad defender. It's obvious that he's a bad defender when watching him play, and advanced stats are not kind to him in that respect, yet Pruit makes a massive leap to say he's suddenly not a bad defender.
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    I agree that there can be said a lot about this article and the statement that Bargnani isn't a good defender, but I don't think discreting arguments or numbers when we don't like them is good for debate and this thread is heading that way.

    I won't go into all of them, but here are a couple:

    - The 205 times Bargnani defended a post-up were not 'only 205'; all the times his man ended up taking a shot this totaled 592, so it's roughly 1 out of 3.
    - 205 divided by the number of games Bargnani played is not roughly 2,5. It is a little more than 3. Not that I say this matters a lot, but it matters a lot that it'sn calculated in Bargnani's disadvantage.
    - We can't say that those 2-3 possessions don't matter because of all the other possessions in the game. If that's the case we should not complain that he does not get 8 rebounds, because it's only 2-3 possessions right?
    - Is his lack of fouling 'indicative' of his bad defense? Not necessarily. He had 3.3 fouls per 48 minutes, which is not a lot. But it's exactly the same as Nowitzki (blame Nowitzki and his lack of fouling, not me for bringing him up again), who is not at all seen as a bad defensive player anymore (on this site and usually when compared with Bargnani).
    - The arguments about the confidence his bad defense brings up in his opponents is very debatable. Are we now going to believe opponents when they bash Bargnani's defense (source anyone?) but call it just 'he's supposed to say that/sportmanship/common curtisy' when they talk about how good Bargnani is?

  11. #5511
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    Quote Tim W. wrote: View Post
    The most egregious error in the argument, though, is assuming that because he is "not bad" in two areas it means he is not a bad defender. It's obvious that he's a bad defender when watching him play, and advanced stats are not kind to him in that respect, yet Pruit makes a massive leap to say he's suddenly not a bad defender.
    And that is where you read him wrong. He doesn't say that Bargnani isn't a bad defender. Pruiti says that Bargnani isn't a terrible defender. Whether you agree with Bargnani not being a terrible defender or not, there is a big difference between bad and terrible. In fact you can read all over his article that Bargnani is indeed a bad defender. Pruiti gives him 'a large part of the blame for last year's poor defense.'

    Pruiti:
    So is Bargnani a terrible defender? I got t say that this one is “busted” in my opinion. Does he deserve a large part of the blame for last year’s poor defense? Yes, but in my opinion, that doesn’t mean that he is this terrible defender that you can’t put out there.

  12. #5512
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    Quote Soft Euro wrote: View Post
    I agree that there can be said a lot about this article and the statement that Bargnani isn't a good defender, but I don't think discreting arguments or numbers when we don't like them is good for debate and this thread is heading that way.

    I won't go into all of them, but here are a couple:

    - The 205 times Bargnani defended a post-up were not 'only 205'; all the times his man ended up taking a shot this totaled 592, so it's roughly 1 out of 3.
    - 205 divided by the number of games Bargnani played is not roughly 2,5. It is a little more than 3. Not that I say this matters a lot, but it matters a lot that it'sn calculated in Bargnani's disadvantage.
    - We can't say that those 2-3 possessions don't matter because of all the other possessions in the game. If that's the case we should not complain that he does not get 8 rebounds, because it's only 2-3 possessions right?
    - Is his lack of fouling 'indicative' of his bad defense? Not necessarily. He had 3.3 fouls per 48 minutes, which is not a lot. But it's exactly the same as Nowitzki (blame Nowitzki and his lack of fouling, not me for bringing him up again), who is not at all seen as a bad defensive player anymore (on this site and usually when compared with Bargnani).
    - The arguments about the confidence his bad defense brings up in his opponents is very debatable. Are we now going to believe opponents when they bash Bargnani's defense (source anyone?) but call it just 'he's supposed to say that/sportmanship/common curtisy' when they talk about how good Bargnani is?
    As much as I appreciate you putting words in my mouth, I never said that those 2-3 possessions a game where Bargnani is guarding his man in the post do not matter. Obviously it's a positive that Bargnani is able to adequately defend opposing players in that type of scenario. What I said is that I hardly think it's reasonable to take that small percentage of defensive plays per game that he does well and use that to claim that Bargnani isn't such a terrible defender after all.

    Plus like I said in my last post, I feel like there's some data that is falling through the cracks here. Do these stats reflect the times when Bargnani's man grabs an offensive rebound and lays it in? What about when his man slips a screen or rolls to the hoop off of a PNR for an easy hoop? Or when Bargnani lumbers over for some half-assed help D and then lets his man catch it on the other side of the hoop for a dunk without anyone within 5 feet of him? Are these considered iso's? Post ups? Or are they considered something completely different because Bargnani isn't "technically" guarding them when they put the ball in the hoop?

    The game I remember most vividly from last season is when Speights from the Sixers destroyed Bargnani for 23 points and six offensive boards in 17 minutes. If you watched that game then you'd come to a couple conclusions a) Bargnani was being targeted for his terrible defense b) Speights came in the game confident and aggressive because he knew that Bargnani couldn't guard him and c) Bargnani is a TERRIBLE defender
    Last edited by Fully; Mon Jul 25th, 2011 at 01:56 PM.

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    Quote Fully wrote: View Post
    As much as I appreciate you putting words in my mouth, I never said that those 2-3 possessions a game where Bargnani is guarding his man in the post do not matter. Obviously it's a positive that Bargnani is able to adequately defend opposing players in that type of scenario. What I said is that I hardly think it's reasonable to take that small percentage of defensive plays per game that he does well and use that to claim that Bargnani isn't such a terrible defender after all.
    No problem, I put words in people's mouths with great pleasure. But I did not say that you literally said 'do not matter,' I kind of got that idea from:

    Quote Fully wrote: View Post
    [...]it only happened 205 times all of last season, which roughly averages out to 2.5 possessions per night where Bargnani gets posted up on the block. That means that there's 40-50 other possessions on any given night where Bargnani is on the floor and is being asked to do things that he's extremely poor at (help side defense, rebounding, recovering to his man). What should we be giving more weight to? The 2-3 plays a night where Bargnani does an average job? Or literally EVERY OTHER DEFENSIVE PLAY where he performs well below an acceptable level? I'd say the latter.
    bold added by me

    I kinda concluded by the context you are putting it in here, that you meant to say that it doesn't matter.

    Quote Fully wrote: View Post
    Plus like I said in my last post, I feel like there's some data that is falling through the cracks here. Do these stats reflect the times when Bargnani's man grabs an offensive rebound and lays it in? What about when his man slips a screen or rolls to the hoop off of a PNR for an easy hoop? Or when Bargnani lumbers over for some half-assed help D and then lets his man catch it on the other side of the hoop for a dunk? Are these considered iso's? Post ups? Or are they something completely different because Bargnani isn't :technically" guarding them when they put the ball in the hoop?
    Some of these stats you can get from the same source Pruiti got them from (I assume): http://mysynergysports.com/. By the way, Bargnani happens to do very well in PNR, he's 30th in rank at only 0,8PPP.

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    Quote Soft Euro wrote: View Post
    And that is where you read him wrong. He doesn't say that Bargnani isn't a bad defender. Pruiti says that Bargnani isn't a terrible defender. Whether you agree with Bargnani not being a terrible defender or not, there is a big difference between bad and terrible. In fact you can read all over his article that Bargnani is indeed a bad defender. Pruiti gives him 'a large part of the blame for last year's poor defense.'
    It seems like it's all semantics, then. Bargnani isn't a terrible defender, yet he deserves a large part of the blame for the team's poor defense. And as I pointed out, it's debatable whether he's even as good as a bad defender. Either way, he hurts your team, so who really cares whether he's terrible or bad?
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    Quote Tim W. wrote: View Post
    It seems like it's all semantics, then. Bargnani isn't a terrible defender, yet he deserves a large part of the blame for the team's poor defense. And as I pointed out, it's debatable whether he's even as good as a bad defender. Either way, he hurts your team, so who really cares whether he's terrible or bad?
    If I get it right he states that the criticism Bargani receives is over the top. He is a bad defender, but there are aspects of his defense which are pretty good. If he was truly terrible he would suck at all parts. He makes the distinction probably because of two reasons. 1. Bargnani isn't that much worse than other bad defenders and not the source of all things of non defending. 2. Because he isn't truly terrible, but only bad, while in fact being good at some aspects of defending, it is still possible that he becomes a decent or better defender.

    This all is pretty much in line with his article about how Jonas and Bargani can work defensively.

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    to be fair, im pretty sure the entire team were shit defenders..

    singling out bargs is kinda like pointing at a pile of doo doo with flies swarming around it and saying "that fly is disgusting.. the rest aren't so bad.. but that one... GROSS"

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    Quote Soft Euro wrote: View Post
    If I get it right he states that the criticism Bargani receives is over the top. He is a bad defender, but there are aspects of his defense which are pretty good. If he was truly terrible he would suck at all parts. He makes the distinction probably because of two reasons. 1. Bargnani isn't that much worse than other bad defenders and not the source of all things of non defending. 2. Because he isn't truly terrible, but only bad, while in fact being good at some aspects of defending, it is still possible that he becomes a decent or better defender.

    This all is pretty much in line with his article about how Jonas and Bargani can work defensively.
    Of course, I disagree with the fact that he's not a terrible defender. You just have to watch him over the course of a season to see that. I think his defensive stats are inflated due to him defending weaker frontcourt players, and I'm not even sure where he got his defensive stats from, to tell you the truth. Without being able to verify his numbers, it's hard to really know if they're accurate, or not.

    Besides, having a bad defender on your frontline is going to constantly cause problems, no matter who he's paired with, and moving Bargnani to the PF position will take away his greatest defensive "strength", so pairing him with ANY center will move him from a bad defender to a terrible defender.

    There are just too many flaws in the argument to take any of it seriously, in my opinion.
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    Quote heinz57 wrote: View Post
    to be fair, im pretty sure the entire team were shit defenders..

    singling out bargs is kinda like pointing at a pile of doo doo with flies swarming around it and saying "that fly is disgusting.. the rest aren't so bad.. but that one... GROSS"
    Neither Davis nor Amir are below average defenders, and in fact are above average team defenders, so singling out the only weak link on the front line isn't unfair. The fact is that Bargnani had been paired with above average team defenders all season long and it never "covered" his defense.
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    Quote Tim W. wrote: View Post
    There are certain fundamental problems with the argument. The first being that Bargnani defended the opponent's weakest frontcourt player the majority of the time, so the raw stat of PPP doesn't work. What would be more informative is how much Bargnani allowed the offensive player to score above or below his seasonal averages. If he's guarding the weakest frontcourt player, his raw defensive stats are going to be inflated.

    In isolation situations, other players help defense is EXTREMELY important, and in whenever Bargnani gets isolated, Raptor players tend to hedge to help him, making it more difficult for his man to score on him.

    The most egregious error in the argument, though, is assuming that because he is "not bad" in two areas it means he is not a bad defender. It's obvious that he's a bad defender when watching him play, and advanced stats are not kind to him in that respect, yet Pruit makes a massive leap to say he's suddenly not a bad defender.
    i think you make very good points and I am not trying to defend Bargnani's woeful help "D", but a few of your points don't make sense to me. You mention as part of your post that Bargnani often covers the less skilled front court player. that may be true, but that should not necessarily detract from the fact that he played decent man on man defense against the players that he is matched up against. There are not very many stats that can take in to account every nuance of the sport and there use mainly to get a glimpse of the big picture.

    Also in your last paragraph I don't believe that the author is trying to convince anyone that Bargnani is a good defender, he is merely trying to point out that he gets painted with a terrible defender brush, when in fact there are parts of his defensive game that might not be as bad as he is being given credit for.

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    Quote CT2010 wrote: View Post
    i think you make very good points and I am not trying to defend Bargnani's woeful help "D", but a few of your points don't make sense to me. You mention as part of your post that Bargnani often covers the less skilled front court player. that may be true, but that should not necessarily detract from the fact that he played decent man on man defense against the players that he is matched up against. There are not very many stats that can take in to account every nuance of the sport and there use mainly to get a glimpse of the big picture.

    Also in your last paragraph I don't believe that the author is trying to convince anyone that Bargnani is a good defender, he is merely trying to point out that he gets painted with a terrible defender brush, when in fact there are parts of his defensive game that might not be as bad as he is being given credit for.
    If Bargnani is usually defending the worst frontcourt player, then his defensive stats will artificially look better because of it, so it will APPEAR that his defense is better than it really is. What matters more is how much more or less his opponent produces per their normal output. And although I can't seem to find it right now, I recall reading that he is very poor in that respect.

    As for whether or not he's as bad as his reputation, he's pretty damn bad. You just have to watch him to see that. Whether you murder 10 people or 50 people, you're still a mass murderer.
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