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Defensive Box Scores: Sacramento Kings 2004-05 Season

Game charting by Ed Peterson

Ed has charted all kinds of details for every visible play of the Sacramento Kings 2004-05 season and assigned defensive responsibility for field goal attempts, free throws, and turnovers. Admittedly many instances require subjective evaluation, and frequently the credit/blame is split between two players or even allocated to the "Team" as a whole.

Explanations: (all stats reflect assigned responsibility to a player).
FGM - Field Goals Made
FGA - Field Goals Attemped
eFG - Effective Field Goal % (adjusts for 3-Pt shots made)
FTM - Free Throws Made
FTA - Free Throws Attempted
T/O - Forced Turnovers (whether actual steals, charges taken, pressed bad passes, travels induced, etc.)
Pts - Points Allowed
RTG - a rough "points per 100 possessions" allowed number for a specific defender.

Please note the RTG is not currently adjusted by the quality of the opposing player guarded, although this is likely to happen in the future!

Kings player defensive performance (through 1/30/2005)
Player
FGM
FGA
FG%
eFG
FTM
FTA
T/O
Pts
RTG
 Daniels 17  .235  .235  3.5  14  60 
 Mobley 43  110  .391  .418  16  20  20.5  108  77 
 Ostertag 66.5  188  .354  .354  61.5  88  15.5  194.5  81 
 House 24.5  .367  .388  11  27  84 
 Jackson 43  117  .368  .408  44.5  57  25.5  140  84 
 Martin 25  60  .417  .454  10.5  16  7.5  65  87 
 Webber 199.5  438.5  .455  .468  85.5  122  80  496  87 
 Miller 311.5  698.5  .446  .461  113.5  169  104.5  758  87 
 Songaila 115.5  279.5  .413  .431  80.5  101.5  37  321.5  90 
 Christie 120  270.5  .444  .503  36  48  46.5  308  91 
 Stojakovic 174.5  401.5  .435  .482  74.5  103  59  461.5  91 
 Bibby 193  441  .438  .496  72  96  73.5  509.5  92 
 Evans 48  115.5  .416  .465  25.5  31.5  15  133  92 
 Team 49  108  .454  .500  21  27  11.5  129  99 
 Barnes 71.5  140.5  .509  .573  40  50  19.5  201  111 
 Bradley .800  .800  13  175 


Note: We are missing data from certain games where coverage was incomplete --
e.g. cutaways, pre-emptions from over-run broadcasts, etc.

It's interesting to compare the individual defensive "box score" data to the influence on overall team defense a player has when he is on the court

Player Team Defense Effect
(Points Allowed per 100 possessions)
Click on the player's name for in-depth statistics.

Player
On Court
Defense
Off Court
Defense
Team Net
Defense
 Songaila
102.3
107.7
-5.4
 Christie
103.0
108.0
-5.0
 Ostertag
102.4
106.3
-3.9
 Miller
105.0
107.7
-2.7
 Mobley
104.6
105.9
-1.3
 Bibby
105.4
106.3
-0.9
 Daniels
105.2
105.7
-0.5
 Jackson
106.2
105.5
+0.7
 Stojakovic
106.1
104.4
+1.7
 Barnes
107.5
105.2
+2.3
 Martin
107.7
105.3
+2.4
 Evans
109.7
104.6
+5.1
 House
110.7
105.3
+5.4
 Webber
107.9
101.6
+6.3
 Bradley
120.1
105.4
+14.7

Analysis: While on/off numbers have their issues (such as the raw versions do not adjust for the other players on the court at the time, nor are they taking into account the game state -- clutch vs garbage time, etc), there are some clear differences in how a player gets rated by the "defensive box score" approach to what that player seemingly contributes to the "greater defensive good" of the team defense. In particular a guy like the recently traded Doug Christie, long a player with an excellent defensive reputation, shows up as the second best on the Kings in team influence, yet was mediocre perhaps on the box score level. Certainly the 'box score' data does not capture how often a player simply deters his opponent from taking a shot, or even denies him the ball in the first place, and the team overall defense also gets at things like boxing out on rebounds and so forth.

Another good case is Chris Webber, who shows up in the middle of the team on the box score scheme, but is basically the worst in team effect if you ignore the seldom seen Michael Bradley. It's likely that when Webber is out there without Miller or Ostertag alongside that he can't provide the interior defensive presence that is lacking. Which gets to a point our friend Dean Oliver always raises -- Basketball is a game about roles.

For another deeper cut, we'll break down the box score data by contested versus uncontested shots:

Kings player defensive performance: Open vs Contested shots
Open Shots
Contested Shots
Player
FGM
FGA
eFG
T/O
Pts
RTG
FGM
FGA
eFG
FTM
FTA
T/O
Pts
RTG
Con%
 Daniels 1.5  .375  75  2.5  13  .192  3.5  11  56  82.8% 
 Miller 139  200.5  .727  291.5  145  167.5  486  .353  113.5  169  104.5  456.5  69  76.6% 
 Ostertag 30.5  58  .526  61  105  35  129  .271  61.5  88  15.5  131.5  73  75.6% 
 Songaila 57  91.5  .645  118  128  54.5  184  .313  80.5  101.5  37  195.5  74  74.1% 
 Webber 120.5  192.5  .645  248.5  129  76  241.5  .323  85.5  122  80  241.5  65  65.8% 
 Evans 25.5  49  .571  56  114  22.5  66.5  .387  25.5  31.5  15  77  81  65.8% 
 Barnes 40.5  61.5  .752  92.5  150  30.5  78  .433  40  50  19.5  107.5  91  65.6% 
 Team 29  44  .750  66  150  19.5  61.5  .333  21  27  11.5  62  73  65.6% 
 Stojakovic 105  176.5  .673  237.5  133  69.5  224  .334  74.5  103  59  224  69  64.6% 
 Jackson 30  63.5  .516  65.5  103  13  53.5  .280  44.5  57  25.5  74.5  73  61.6% 
 Martin 18.5  28.5  .728  41.5  145  6.5  31.5  .206  10.5  16  7.5  23.5  51  61.4% 
 Bradley 1.000  200  .500  159  59.5% 
 Christie 77  147.5  .597  176  119  43  123  .390  36  48  46.5  132  69  56.1% 
 Bibby 130  246.5  .609  300  121  63  194.5  .353  72  96  73.5  209.5  68  55.3% 
 House 15.5  .484  15  96  .222  11  12  73  51.4% 
 Mobley 34  69  .522  72  104  41  .244  16  20  20.5  36  51  50.2% 

There's all kinds of intriguing numbers you could create from the above: things like Free Throws per contested shot, Turnovers per contested possession, and so on. It's clear that big men give up fewer open shots on a percentage basis where they are assigned responsibility for the outcome from Ed, and how often a player contests a shot may not be a key indicator of individual defense either it seems -- playing good help defense may yield more open shots to 'your man' when the ball gets passed.

As it stands, measuring the value of an individual on the defensive front remains a work in progress...we'll have more to say on the subject in the near future!

For more data from Ed's incredible work on the charting front, see:

 - Production by Play Type (Team/Individual Player)
 - Open/Contested Shots (Offense/Defense)


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