payitforward wrote:9 and 20 wrote:Payitforward, I agree with just about all of what you wrote....
Only in this case, or as a matter of principle?9 and 20 wrote:...on Bryant, ...I just don't think his offensive output on paper matches his on-court, team-related output....
Can't let that pass, sorry. We are comparing the impact on their teams' ability to win games -- of what players do on the floor not on paper. & it's perfectly easy to understand what wins basketball games.Then there's the effect on that of defense vs. offenseSpoiler:To win a game, either you score more efficiently than the opponent or you get yourself more chances to score (more possessions) than the opponent.
That's it. Nothing else. Do both, & you cannot lose. Do neither, & you cannot win. Do one or the other, & you have a chance to win.
Moreover, the effect of, for example, a defensive rebound on the above can be & has been measured.Spoiler:In basketball -- unlike football & baseball for example -- defense & offense are linked dynamically & not easily separated. E.g. steals on defense result in high % offensive opportunities for your team. OTOH, giving the other team a basket on defense & then taking the ball out to start your offense results in the lowest % offensive possessions.
This also works the other way of course. Make a bucket, & the opponent has to take the ball out under his own basket -- you're more likely to defend that possession successfully than one in which you give your opponent a defensive rebound or (worse yet) a steal.
Thus, in basketball, an excellent offensive player is helping your defense -- even though that help doesn't show up on his own numbers. Conversely, an excellent defensive player is helping your offense.
At the level of individual-player skills, of course it's ideal for a guy at any position to be great on individual & team offense & on individual & team defense. It happens, but it's rare.9 and 20 wrote:...I don't think, for example, the Pacers would trade Myles Turner for Bryant.
Well, the debate about Bryant has been ongoing since we picked him up. & the comparison/contrast of him & Myles Turner has also been a long-term subject here. People have arrived at their own personal conclusions -- by & large not subject to change! Here's my view:Spoiler:IMO, Myles Turner is over-rated. IMO, Thomas Bryant is under-rated. To tell the truth, I wouldn't trade Bryant for Turner straight up! I'm aware that puts me in a minority. &, of course, Bryant has now had a significant injury, which I'm leaving out of the picture.
Turner's biggest defensive skill is blocking shots. People absolutely love to see blocked shots. It's exciting, it's super-athletic, it's super-visible (unlike any number of other good things a player can do). Blocks get shown in highlight reels or on ESPN.
In a way, a block is the defensive equivalent of a dunk: people love dunks. But... a dunk is worth 2 points, period, it provides no more help winning a game than does an open midrange shot that people barely notice.
It's the same with blocked shots: almost all blocks go out of bounds, whereupon your opponent takes the ball out under your basket. You haven't had a big effect on the efficiency of that particular possession for the opponent. Some, to be sure. But overall a blocked shot is no more impactful than a defensive rebound.
Thus, because per 40 minutes last year Bryant & Turner had the same number of defensive boards + blocked shots, we'd have to look elsewhere for a reason to call Turner a better player. Yet, overall, looking at the rest of all the two players' numbers, Bryant is by far the better player.
&, if you want to say, for example, "Bryant is slower of foot than Turner, so he's not as good an individual defender," then you're going to have to listen to me say "Bryant got almost twice as many offensive boards as Turner, & Bryant had 84% more assists than Turner, & Bryant scored almost 30% more points than Turner -- at a TS% of 64.9% vs. Turner's 56.6%.
Not to mention that Turner is paid 2.2 times the money we pay Bryant.
You still choose ignore the impact a C has on the defensive side of the ball and continue to point to your beloved rebounding stats to prove it must not really matter. You can repeat the same nonsense over and over again but it still doesn't make you right. A center is the last line of defense. His on-court impact is significantly tied to his ability to deter or challenge shots.... and it's significantly more important than grabbing an extra rebound or two a game.
I'm not making a Bryant vs Turner argument because I agree that Turner is overpaid but this is more about Bryant not being our long term answer there.