payitforward wrote:Ruzious wrote:Pif, you say you don't discount spacing and then say it should be ignored unless/until it can be quantified, right? I'm trying to help you out, because this has become a sticking point 275 times or so.
Thanks for asking.
I don't discount spacing. Start with this: it's obvious that it is at least conceivable that spacing would have an effect. That seems undeniable to me -- & that would be enough all on its own that one could absolutely NOT discount spacing.
If it's conceivable that something could have an effect, then it should be studied to discover whether it actually has an effect, how & to what degree & on what. In a business like sports, where there's lots of money at stake in highly competitive situations, I would assume that if something should be studied (& assuming that it can be studied, which in this case I certainly assume) it is being studied.
Studied by smart people. Who conclude that it does have an effect. That's good enough for me. Way good enough! I wouldn't for a minute question that spacing has an effect, hence no way could I discount it.
What I don't know, & it's impossible for me to figure out (or you, nate, etc.) is how to quantify that effect. So, whether we're talking about Bertans or we're talking about Ben Simmons, it's hard to bring that effect of spacing into your picture of the player's value -- either as a negative factor or a positive one.
One thing you could do is look at Davis Bertans' teammates -- guys who were with SA before he arrived & are, or will be, there now that he's gone. You could look at all their performances when he was there & when he's not. You could do the same for guys who played with him on the court & when he was off the court.
But people aren't machines, so there's a lot of variation in every one of those guys' baselines -- independent of Bertans. So it's a damned complicated thing to figure out.
Especially since it's not an independent variable exactly, but rather more of a limiting factor or an enabling one (depending on whether & to what degree it's absent or present).
I would have preferred a yes or no. Just looking at how a player's teammates performed with him on the court vs off... that's dependent on all kinds of factors - though spacing is an important and beneficial one - regardless of whether teammates take advantage of it, so there's no reason to go through that exercise. But if I did, Rudy Gay had his most efficient season last season - and he's played like 57.5 NBA seasons. It could be that Bertans was a reason for that, but it's not something you can really quantify, so no - it probably cannot be quantified in ways you're talking about. But I think we at least agree that it exists, but other than that... I'm not sure we're getting anywhere.