Transitioning Turnovers: Case Study of Golden State and Toronto

In Dean Oliver’s Four Factors, we are interested in effective field goal percentage, offensive rebounding percentage, free-throw rate, and turnover percentage. If a team cannot dominate a couple of these categories, then it will be unlikely for that team to win. For instance, let’s consider effective field goal percentage. The Golden State Warriors have posted a .558 eFG% while limiting their…

BLUE Defense: Introduction and Analysis

One of the simplest offensive plays in basketball is the pick and roll. The philosophy is relatively straightforward, a ball handler waits to receive a screen from a teammate and reacts accordingly. If the teammate establishes position, gets low and wide, and makes proper contact with the ball handler’s defender, then the defense is forced…

Introduction to Oliver’s Four Factors

In 2004, Dean Oliver expanded upon his “Four Factors” philosophy from his 2002 book, Basketball on Paper, in an attempt to identify how four important strategies relate to success in basketball. These strategies are nothing new, as these were drilled into my head from coaches dating back to the early 90’s. The novelty of understanding…

Markov Simulation: NBA Playoffs Round 2

In continuation of our Markov simulation of the NBA Playoffs, we take a look at the updated probabilities for each team remaining. In this article, we take a cursory look at each second round match up and see how the first round panned out compared to the probabilistic predictions. So Far So Good: All rounds…

Markov Simulation: NBA Playoffs

With the NBA Playoffs set to get underway, we take a quick look at the probabilities for each team becoming the NBA Champions. Common consensus would place any combination of the five strongest teams: Golden State – Houston – San Antonio versus Cleveland – Boston. But the question is how likely? To answer that, we…