I get a big laugh out of something I picked up early on. It first states, under "benefits, "I believe WARP does a better job of incorporating defensive value.", then under "limitations", that "WARP cannot account for contributions that are not tracked in the box score, most notably on defense.". Huh?
That aside, it takes a bunch of stats, incorporates some namby pamby imaginative "playing with 4 average players", throws in some assumptions, compares against some imaginary replacement player, and comes up with some number they expect people to take seriously. Some do, ugh
The sad part is now that Waiters is going to be playing alongside the best basketball player in the world who also is known for making his teammates better, he's going to look so good out there this season. And everyone is going to get at me and say see Waiters is better than Demar completely excluding the fact that he is going to be the 4th option in that starting lineup and is probably going to get wide open look after wide open look and straight line drive after straight line drive LOL. You know how amazing Demar would look if he were playing alongside Lebron, Love and Irving.
Again, don't judge WARP by those rankings. If you sorted those rankings by last year's WARP, most of you would agree with the order for the most part. It is their process for projecting future WARP that is way off.
In simple terms, it's taking a guy's numbers, throwing them in with some imaginary, yet theoretically average teammates, using estimates and assumptions, and coming up with a "comparable" number to some imaginary replacement player, drawn from a pool of numbers from starters/subs (no diff,eh) from different teams under very different circumstances, even disregarding position ("position is less of a factor because the nature of position is more fluid in basketball") and guessing what his production would be playing with this imaginary, theoretical team, vs guessing what other players' production would be.
Unless I'm missing something, it seems more imaginary guesswork than even video games, and the kind of number crunching that comes from someone that's a math wiz, with next to zero understanding, or even appreciation, of the complexities and variances of the game and of team sport in general.
Congrats to Demar, for earning that USA spot, and proving that hard work gets a guy further than too many are able to recognize. Fucking dumb "journalists" writing him off consistently, despite the performances. Go DeMar!!! Make yourself and your teammates proud!
Was viewing at DD's twitter and found this pic, he looks like an raptor in this picture, even more raptor-like than Bosh
Replacement level is very easy to determine. But it is also irrelevant - it is just a low win rate. If you prefer, you can assume a replacement win rate of 0, like WS and WP do, but it is a difference that gets applied to every player, so it really doesn't impact the ratings at all. Strange thing to have a problem with.and coming up with a "comparable" number to some imaginary replacement player, drawn from a pool of numbers from starters/subs (no diff,eh) from different teams under very different circumstances, even disregarding position ("position is less of a factor because the nature of position is more fluid in basketball")
Guessing? No, there's math involved. If you have a problem with math, say so. There are no real assumptions made - the relationship between wins and each of the statistical categories are determined by doing regression studies, not by arbitrarily assigning numbers. The imaginary theoretical team is necessary so you can compare every player and not just players who play with the same teammates.and guessing what his production would be playing with this imaginary, theoretical team, vs guessing what other players' production would be.
The number crunching is indeed done by math whizzes - the kind that love watching basketball and have a very deep appreciation for the game and it's many nuances.
You say "There are no estimates or assumptions used either ".
The description says:
- "using the theoretical "winning percentage" of the team with four average players" (that's not guessing/assuming?)
- "Also, it requires a number of assumptions - the value of assists, the trade-off between usage and efficiency, and replacement level. "
- "A painstakingly detailed explanation of how WARP is calculated and its assumptions follows."
- "Valuing assists is one question statistical analysis remains unable to answer with any degree of certainty, leaving us to use an estimate."
- "This estimate is multiplied by field goals made and by 0.75 and subtracted from the prior point total to give us an estimate of offensive points created."
- "We now have an estimate of the performance of the imaginary team on minor possessions."
- "The relatively easy part is estimating the team's offensive rebound percentage. The one thing that needs to be considered is that each rebound grabbed by the player makes one less available for his imaginary teammates. So the teammates' percentage is calculated out of the remaining rebounds by the following formula. "
- "The more challenging aspect is figuring out how many rebound opportunities are available to the imaginary team. This requires us to estimate the percentage of minor possessions that end in missed shots for both the player and his teammates, which is complicated by the usage adjustment made earlier."
- "Note that .56 is used as the multiplier on missed free throws because we estimate that 44 percent of free throws are shot as part of a series of two. This is a slight overestimation due to some free throws that are not the first of two but are still not available for rebounds (technical/flagrant foul shots and three-shot fouls)."
-"We then divide by the league-wide ratio of eFG% to field-goal percentage to get the estimated field-goal percentage of the teammates." (if you're going to have imaginary teammates, you need imaginary numbetrs too, eh)
- "As part of this process, we've estimated how frequently these teammates are shooting from the field, ...."
- "So what we have to do is estimate how often each of those things occur, and how many points result on average (from field goal and free throw attempts; obviously no points result from the others) and then factor in rebounding. "
- "To evaluate these, we need to first estimate defensive possessions"
- "then add to that 80 percent of the league average of blocks + steals per possession (which the other four imaginary teammates are theoretically generating). "
- "Next we need to look at fouls. We can estimate how many possessions each foul results in by the formula: "
- "This ratio is multiplied by the player's personal fouls (PF) divided by the estimated defensive possessions the player has participated in."
- "If we add these and subtract from 100 percent, we estimate how often the imaginary opposition gets off a shot from the field. We then add in the estimated points per attempt to get points allowed per minor possession:"
-"Available rebound opportunities are easier at the defensive end because we already know how frequently the opposing team is getting to the free throw line and attempting shots from the field. We merely need to estimate the opposition's field-goal percentage based on its FG Rating (TmFGRat)."
There's enough estimating going on there to choke a herd of raptors. As to your " If you have a problem with math, say so.", all I can say is that my education and career successes would indicate I have a great appreciation for math. What I don't have an appreciation for is misapplication of math. What I see here is equivalent to what I saw way too often from techie genius programmers I've managed. The kind of guys who got so buried in complex tech manipulation that they couldn't be trusted, and rightly so, to pay near enough attention to basic functionality of business needs and operation, and were unable to see the flaws in their work in relation to actual application.
" The imaginary theoretical team is necessary so you can compare every player and not just players who play with the same teammates."
So taking various players' actual numbers, while playing for different teams under different circumstances, and imagining/estimating how they'd look while playing with the same imaginary average team, means something to you? It means sfa to me.
"The number crunching is indeed done by math whizzes - the kind that love watching basketball and have a very deep appreciation for the game and it's many nuances."
The kind that say All-Star and Team USA DeMar DeRozan is the 17th best SG in the league and that Waiters and Olapido are much better. I'd say that's ignorant of nuances of the game, and totally dependent on complex formulas based on a shit load of estimates and assumptions applied to some imaginary team play. Shit man, it's taking a baseball analytic, where despite it being a game made up of teams, virtually every play accounted to a player is independent of players around him and what they do, and tries to apply it to a sport that is so team and teammate dependent, to say nothing of how stats can be greatly affected by opponents (starters/subs, focus of defense or not).
I saw someone comparing Waiters 28 games (half as a sub, half of the other half vs other also-rans playig out the string), against DeMar's full season. Guessing/estimating/assuming how those incomparable stats hold up playing with the same imaginary team, may be okay for building a video game, but it has nothing to do with reality, imo.