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Defense Effects on Shooting

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  • Dean Oliver
    When a defense opts to leave a man open, how much do they improve a player s shooting? The three-point shootout provides a way to look at this because we can
    Message 1 of 1 , Feb 11, 2001
      When a defense opts to leave a man open, how much do they improve a
      player's shooting?

      The three-point shootout provides a way to look at this because we
      can compare the shooting percentage in the contest to shooting
      percentages in games. I did this originally 4 years ago; the results
      are in

      http://www.tsoft.com/~deano/articles/aa040397.htm

      and show a general 10% increase in FG% in the contest vs. in games.

      Yesterday's contest actually shows a similar result. Although I
      couldn't find the listing of shot progression this time, the total
      scores of the players were given as

      First Round (Top three advance)
      Team Player Points
      Mil Ray Allen 20
      Sac P Stojakovic 19
      Dallas Dirk Nowitzki 17
      Orlando Pat Garrity 15
      Dallas Steve Nash 14
      Seattle Rashard Lewis 12
      N York Allan Houston 11
      Utah Bryon Russell 10

      Final Round
      Team Player Points
      Mil Ray Allen 19
      Sac P Stojakovic 17
      Dallas Dirk Nowitzki 10

      with 2 points given for money balls and 1 for all others. Assuming
      that money balls were hit no more frequently than regular balls, the
      point total of 164 works out to be about 137 total shots made
      (164*5/6). Each player took 25 shots in each round, for a total of
      275 shots. 137/275 is about 50% shooting.

      During the regular season, the players shot

      Team Player fg3%
      Mil Ray Allen 0.412
      Sac P Stojakovic 0.398
      Dallas Dirk Nowitzki 0.364
      Orlando Pat Garrity 0.453
      Dallas Steve Nash 0.417
      Seattle Rashard Lewis 0.407
      N York Allan Houston 0.412
      Utah Bryon Russell 0.444

      This works out to be an average of about 41%, for about a 9%
      improvement.

      Having watched the 2-ball competition, I suppose that could also be
      used to estimate improvement without defense. It would be
      particularly useful for general shooting, as opposed to just 3 pt
      shooting. But the 2-ball results aren't easily used, unless someone
      taped the show and can track them for us. Anyone???

      Dean Oliver
      Journal of Basketball Studies
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