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Just The Sports: Bill Simmons Doesn't Know The NBA

Just The Sports

Sunday, July 09, 2006

Bill Simmons Doesn't Know The NBA

One of the most entertaining games I play is "take a sports writer's words out of context in order to poke fun at him/her." No, the game is not mature and neither is it very clever, but it amuses me and that is all that matters sometimes. The victim for today is Bill Simmons who wrote his annual NBA trade value index article. There was two errors in particular I would like to clear up lest anyone actually take Simmons's thoughts to be a reflection of reality.

You know my ongoing "I should be running an NBA team" joke? As it turns out, I'm overqualified -- I watch basketball and have common sense. Looks like the dream is dead.

Richard Jefferson (31) doesn't seem to be getting better and might want to consider changing his first name to "Ricky" or "Rico" to spruce things up...

The first sentence actually occurred later in the article than the second, but my reason for taking them out of context will become clearer by the end of this post.

For someone to suggest Richard Jefferson is not getting any better is ludicrous. It is absolutely insane especially when you consider that he is the Net who is the best at his job.

Jefferson has been a good player four of the five years he has been in the NBA, excluding his 2004-05 season. Three of his five years (minus aforementioned season and rookie season), Jefferson has been a great player, posting player win-loss percentages of .785, .819, and .838. The .838 player win-loss percentage is from the 2005-06 season where he shot his way to an amazing 117 offensive rating, the highest of his career. So much for not getting any better. His defensive rating also tied for the highest of his career at 104, but that is still below the league average (106) and when someone has an offensive rating of 117, he or she can afford to give up a few more points. Looking at the 10.8 player wins he contributed to the Nets last year compared to only 2.1 player losses, there is no reason to suggest Richard Jefferson is a legitimate superstar.

The one awful season Jefferson did have in 2004-05 was also the one where he played in only 33 contests, losing the other 49 to a wrist injury. When he did come back, he tried to do way too much, using more possessions and taking more shots than he could handle, and as a result posting the lowest offensive rating of his career (100). Last year, he returned to a more advisable usage rate and showed both himself and the Nets just how efficient a player he is.

26. Ray Allen
Props to anyone who reels off a monster contract year, signs a monster contract, then submits an even BETTER season the following year.

Ray Allen did not have a better season after he signed his monster contract. Yes, he upped his scoring average and shot even better from the field, but his 2005-06 season was still worse than his 2004-05 one, mainly because he quit playing the little defense he had played. His defensive rating went up four points from 112 to 116, even more comfortably above the league average. His player winning percentage also decreased (.657 to .579) along with his win shares (32 to 23).

Using such poor measuring tools as his eyes and common sense, Bill Simmons would no doubt be an awful NBA GM.


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