turk3d wrote:Mathematically it works.
Nobody is denying that, but it is a fallacy to use that working math to justify the method, because it doesn't work mathematically due to a sound method. That's what kabstah pointed out when he wrote that "you can pair off players from two different teams in any arbitrary way you want", it will always sum up to the result.
turk3d wrote:It certainly gives you more of an "apples to apples" comparison and I think is probably a better way to compare players.
It is not a better way to compare players, it just a more convenient one. If you have a metric which is able to determine the impact on the game results by a player, it should be independent on the "position", and thus no arbitrary pairing off of players is necessary at all. If the metric is really way different between positions, such difference is pointing to a flawed metric, and any kind of positional adjustment or such comparison will not lead to a better metric here at all, the metric will still have the same flaw. PPG is just not a good metric to compare the overall impact of a player, no matter whether you compare all players regardless of "positions" or just players from "one position". The amount of shots a players get is not just determined by the individual player alone, but by the overall team offensive concept as well as the defensive concept of the opposing team.
turk3d wrote:It's academic no matter how you wish to slice it.
There is nothing academic about that at all, if you count up all the points one team scored and compare that to all the points the other team scored, it will always show the result no matter what kind of pairing you want to use. That is the simple concept of the game, count the overall score for both teams and the one with the higher score will win. In fact, that is the concept of basically all team sports. But pairing off the players from different teams is not giving you a better analytical tool.
turk3d wrote:I hate it when you compare players who have different teammates, different coaching styles and claim that "so and so" is better than "so and so".
You can hate that as much as you want, but a tool which allows the comparison of players regardless of differences in team structure, coaching styles or positions is exactly what decision makers need. Everything else is just fooling around without gaining real important informations.
turk3d wrote:Ben Wallace is the exception here. He constantly beat his man in rebounding and he was a great help defender (Positional metric doesn't take this into account) but it still says a lot.
Team defense and help defense is ignored by any boxscore-based metric, because there is no entry for that in the boxscore at all. Thus, you will always fail here. And Ben Wallace is not the lone exception, there are many players like that who still helping their teams win more games. The issue is not that an individual player must score more points than the opponents players on the "same position", but that a player must enable his team to score more points than the opponents overall team. A facillitator on offense, in an offensive system like the TPO for example, will basically getting no credit for initiating the offense at all, but he is as important to the system as the post guy scoring the points. There are multiple defenders in the league on all kind of positions which are in there for their team and help defense. That doesn't show up in boxscores for them individually, just in the end, when we look at the result. If your metric is not able to deceiver the defensive contribution, it will fail and it doesn't matter whether you just compared players from supposed to be one position. If the metric can deceiver that and can give credit accordingly (like some version of APM might be able to do that), no positional adjustment would be necessary at all.
In the end, what you are trying to justify is the usage of a bad metric by proclaiming that when used just in a comparison for players from the "same position" would magically become a better metric. But that is a flawed thinking.
turk3d wrote:Probably can say the same in today's game about Chandler who may frequently get outscored but provides so much to the team in other ways, although he does shoot almost 70% from the field. I'm not going to argue that this is better than what we already have, just that I believe this could probably give us some additional insights.
Chandler is nothing like Ben Wallace, there are not even close. Chandler is far worse in terms of defensive impact, does neither possess Wallace' ability to defend 1on1 nor has his team and help defense strength. Chandler's biggest contribution is already captured by the boxscore, his ability to catch the ball and convert at a high rate. As long as Chandler does not need to create offense for himself or others, he is not turning the ball over. Wallace had weaker hands.
There is no additional insight gained by comparing players from the same position, if the used metric is flawed to begin with. That is an important point, a point anyone must understand otherwise any kind of player comparison based on stats will be prone to fail.