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Re: [APBR_analysis] East - West imbalance

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  • igor eduardo küpfer
    ... From: Mike G To: Sent: Thursday, July 10, 2003 1:11 AM Subject: [APBR_analysis] East - West
    Message 1 of 9 , Jul 9 10:55 PM
      ----- Original Message -----
      From: "Mike G" <msg_53@...>
      To: <APBR_analysis@yahoogroups.com>
      Sent: Thursday, July 10, 2003 1:11 AM
      Subject: [APBR_analysis] East - West imbalance


      > As recently as 1999, the East was winning 55% of inter-conference
      > games. The West took over and beat the East down to 39% in 2001.
      > The East rebounded to 45% in '02, and then dropped back to .405 this
      > last season.
      >
      > What kind of forces create this situation? It doesn't seem as though
      > it can be good for the game. Does it naturally balance out? Or can
      > free-agency cause a rush of stars to a 'major league' conference,
      > worsening the disparity?
      >

      One of the things that rarely gets mentioned is that the West, in addition
      to having the team's with the best records, also has the teams with the
      _worst_ records. In other words, the disparity between best and worst in the
      West is greater than that in the East, where teams tend to cluster tightly
      around the average. This has been the pattern for more than a decade. You
      can kind of see it if you look at the standard deviations of winning
      percentages from both conferences -- the higher the standard deviation, the
      greater the disparity with the conference between best and worse.

      Decade Conference N Mean StDev
      1940 E 16 0.4706 0.1639
      1940 W 15 0.5311 0.1546

      1950 C 5 0.6118 0.1516
      1950 E 47 0.5098 0.1324
      1950 W 45 0.4742 0.1236

      1960 E 46 0.5524 0.1592
      1960 W 51 0.4527 0.1350

      1970 E 90 0.4839 0.1384
      1970 W 94 0.5154 0.1209

      1980 E 111 0.5134 0.1527
      1980 W 120 0.4876 0.1434

      1990 E 143 0.5002 0.1533
      1990 W 135 0.4999 0.1827

      2000 E 60 0.4740 0.1278
      2000 W 56 0.5279 0.1642

      I don't see that anything has to be done -- the disparity between
      conferences looks greater than it actually is because people have a tendency
      to look at the extremes (the best teams, the worst teams, the finalists,
      etc.) and ignore the entire range of variation.
    • Mike G
      ... wrote: remember around December of this season when the East ... flurry of postings ... could be an artifact of ... the season things ... advantage.
      Message 2 of 9 , Jul 10 6:49 AM
        --- In APBR_analysis@yahoogroups.com, "Michael Tamada" <tamada@o...>
        wrote:
        remember around December of this season when the East
        > had a winning percentage against the West? There was a small
        flurry of postings
        > here about that, but my reaction at the time was that it
        could be an artifact of
        > small sample size. Which it turned out to be; by the end of
        the season things
        > were where we expected them to be, with a solid Western
        advantage.

        Perhaps it was hoping against hope, but it looked like a serious
        trend dating back a full year.

        The 2001-02 season started like the one before, with the West winning
        over 60% of interconference games. As the season wore on, the East
        slowly gained and finished at .448

        The sub-.500 difference had been cut in half, from the previous year.

        It wasn't unreasonable to suppose the 'pendulum' might bring the
        conferences back to parity by this (2002-03) season.

        The latest posting I (facetiously) made regarding the early East
        surge had them at 24-14, on Nov. 11. Coincidentally, I recall Shaq
        returning about that time, and the rest of the West picked up the
        pace.

        To have finished the year at 171-251, the East went 147-237 the rest
        of the way, or .380

        That is really bad.

        No team typified this season more than the Pacers, who actually
        drubbed the then-undefeated Mavericks, and then shortly thereafter
        foundered for the season. They could only beat the cellar-dwellers
        in the West, some of the time.


        > ... the 40% winning
        > percentages are pretty worrisome and bothersome,

        And one reason I hate it is that stats may have to be adjusted to
        account for the great imbalance in competition. Something for the
        future, I guess.
      • ankurvdesai
        How do you know that the worst west teams are the worst teams in the league? isn t it possible that their records are only worse than those of the east because
        Message 3 of 9 , Aug 7, 2003
          How do you know that the worst west teams are the worst teams in the
          league? isn't it possible that their records are only worse than
          those of the east because they have to play the west juggernauts more
          often? i think you'd have to have more detailed team-by-team record
          data to make an assertion like the one in this post.


          --- In APBR_analysis@yahoogroups.com, igor eduardo küpfer
          <igorkupfer@r...> wrote:
          >
          > ----- Original Message -----
          > From: "Mike G" <msg_53@h...>
          > To: <APBR_analysis@yahoogroups.com>
          > Sent: Thursday, July 10, 2003 1:11 AM
          > Subject: [APBR_analysis] East - West imbalance
          >
          >
          > > As recently as 1999, the East was winning 55% of inter-conference
          > > games. The West took over and beat the East down to 39% in 2001.
          > > The East rebounded to 45% in '02, and then dropped back to .405
          this
          > > last season.
          > >
          > > What kind of forces create this situation? It doesn't seem as
          though
          > > it can be good for the game. Does it naturally balance out? Or
          can
          > > free-agency cause a rush of stars to a 'major league' conference,
          > > worsening the disparity?
          > >
          >
          > One of the things that rarely gets mentioned is that the West, in
          addition
          > to having the team's with the best records, also has the teams with
          the
          > _worst_ records. In other words, the disparity between best and
          worst in the
          > West is greater than that in the East, where teams tend to cluster
          tightly
          > around the average. This has been the pattern for more than a
          decade. You
          > can kind of see it if you look at the standard deviations of winning
          > percentages from both conferences -- the higher the standard
          deviation, the
          > greater the disparity with the conference between best and worse.
          >
          > Decade Conference N Mean StDev
          > 1940 E 16 0.4706 0.1639
          > 1940 W 15 0.5311 0.1546
          >
          > 1950 C 5 0.6118 0.1516
          > 1950 E 47 0.5098 0.1324
          > 1950 W 45 0.4742 0.1236
          >
          > 1960 E 46 0.5524 0.1592
          > 1960 W 51 0.4527 0.1350
          >
          > 1970 E 90 0.4839 0.1384
          > 1970 W 94 0.5154 0.1209
          >
          > 1980 E 111 0.5134 0.1527
          > 1980 W 120 0.4876 0.1434
          >
          > 1990 E 143 0.5002 0.1533
          > 1990 W 135 0.4999 0.1827
          >
          > 2000 E 60 0.4740 0.1278
          > 2000 W 56 0.5279 0.1642
          >
          > I don't see that anything has to be done -- the disparity between
          > conferences looks greater than it actually is because people have a
          tendency
          > to look at the extremes (the best teams, the worst teams, the
          finalists,
          > etc.) and ignore the entire range of variation.
        • igor eduardo küpfer
          ... From: ankurvdesai To: APBR_analysis@yahoogroups.com Sent: Thursday, August 07, 2003 5:48 PM Subject: [APBR_analysis] Re: East - West imbalance How do you
          Message 4 of 9 , Aug 7, 2003
             
            ----- Original Message -----
            Sent: Thursday, August 07, 2003 5:48 PM
            Subject: [APBR_analysis] Re: East - West imbalance

            How do you know that the worst west teams are the worst teams in the
            league? isn't it possible that their records are only worse than
            those of the east because they have to play the west juggernauts more
            often? i think you'd have to have more detailed team-by-team record
            data to make an assertion like the one in this post.

            I was looking only at interconference records. The worst teams in the West had worse records against East teams than the worst East teams had against Western teams.
             
            ed
          • wimpds
            In any event, the biggest problem is that all the best teams are in the West. The NBA finals have become completely anticlimactic. We already know that the
            Message 5 of 9 , Aug 7, 2003
              In any event, the biggest problem is that all the best teams are in
              the West. The NBA finals have become completely anticlimactic. We
              already know that the top 5 teams will be from the West next year.


              --- In APBR_analysis@yahoogroups.com, "ankurvdesai"
              <ankurvdesai@y...> wrote:
              > How do you know that the worst west teams are the worst teams in
              the
              > league? isn't it possible that their records are only worse than
              > those of the east because they have to play the west juggernauts
              more
              > often? i think you'd have to have more detailed team-by-team
              record
              > data to make an assertion like the one in this post.
              >
              >
              > --- In APBR_analysis@yahoogroups.com, igor eduardo küpfer
              > <igorkupfer@r...> wrote:
              > >
              > > ----- Original Message -----
              > > From: "Mike G" <msg_53@h...>
              > > To: <APBR_analysis@yahoogroups.com>
              > > Sent: Thursday, July 10, 2003 1:11 AM
              > > Subject: [APBR_analysis] East - West imbalance
              > >
              > >
              > > > As recently as 1999, the East was winning 55% of inter-
              conference
              > > > games. The West took over and beat the East down to 39% in
              2001.
              > > > The East rebounded to 45% in '02, and then dropped back
              to .405
              > this
              > > > last season.
              > > >
              > > > What kind of forces create this situation? It doesn't seem as
              > though
              > > > it can be good for the game. Does it naturally balance out?
              Or
              > can
              > > > free-agency cause a rush of stars to a 'major league'
              conference,
              > > > worsening the disparity?
              > > >
              > >
              > > One of the things that rarely gets mentioned is that the West,
              in
              > addition
              > > to having the team's with the best records, also has the teams
              with
              > the
              > > _worst_ records. In other words, the disparity between best and
              > worst in the
              > > West is greater than that in the East, where teams tend to
              cluster
              > tightly
              > > around the average. This has been the pattern for more than a
              > decade. You
              > > can kind of see it if you look at the standard deviations of
              winning
              > > percentages from both conferences -- the higher the standard
              > deviation, the
              > > greater the disparity with the conference between best and worse.
              > >
              > > Decade Conference N Mean StDev
              > > 1940 E 16 0.4706 0.1639
              > > 1940 W 15 0.5311 0.1546
              > >
              > > 1950 C 5 0.6118 0.1516
              > > 1950 E 47 0.5098 0.1324
              > > 1950 W 45 0.4742 0.1236
              > >
              > > 1960 E 46 0.5524 0.1592
              > > 1960 W 51 0.4527 0.1350
              > >
              > > 1970 E 90 0.4839 0.1384
              > > 1970 W 94 0.5154 0.1209
              > >
              > > 1980 E 111 0.5134 0.1527
              > > 1980 W 120 0.4876 0.1434
              > >
              > > 1990 E 143 0.5002 0.1533
              > > 1990 W 135 0.4999 0.1827
              > >
              > > 2000 E 60 0.4740 0.1278
              > > 2000 W 56 0.5279 0.1642
              > >
              > > I don't see that anything has to be done -- the disparity between
              > > conferences looks greater than it actually is because people
              have a
              > tendency
              > > to look at the extremes (the best teams, the worst teams, the
              > finalists,
              > > etc.) and ignore the entire range of variation.
            • Dean Oliver
              ... the ... more ... record ... the West had worse records against East teams than the worst East teams had against Western teams. Note that Sagarin and Massey
              Message 6 of 9 , Aug 7, 2003
                --- In APBR_analysis@yahoogroups.com, igor eduardo küpfer
                <igorkupfer@r...> wrote:
                >
                > ----- Original Message -----
                > From: ankurvdesai
                > To: APBR_analysis@yahoogroups.com
                > Sent: Thursday, August 07, 2003 5:48 PM
                > Subject: [APBR_analysis] Re: East - West imbalance
                >
                >
                > How do you know that the worst west teams are the worst teams in
                the
                > league? isn't it possible that their records are only worse than
                > those of the east because they have to play the west juggernauts
                more
                > often? i think you'd have to have more detailed team-by-team
                record
                > data to make an assertion like the one in this post.
                >
                >
                > I was looking only at interconference records. The worst teams in
                the West had worse records against East teams than the worst East
                teams had against Western teams.

                Note that Sagarin and Massey both put out ratings of NBA teams, too,
                accounting for strength of schedule. The below have playoffs also
                factored in.

                http://www.masseyratings.com/rate/nba-m.htm

                Rank Team Power
                1 San Antonio 1.9
                2 Sacramento 1.671
                3 Dallas 1.407
                4 LA Lakers 1.141
                5 Minnesota 0.867
                6 New Jersey 0.85
                7 Portland 0.79
                8 Utah 0.507
                9 Philadelphia 0.479
                10 Detroit 0.387
                11 New Orleans 0.359
                12 Phoenix 0.329
                13 Houston 0.281
                14 Indiana 0.153
                15 Seattle 0.084
                16 Milwaukee 0.042
                17 Boston 0.014
                18 Orlando -0.006
                19 Golden State -0.105
                20 New York -0.241
                21 Washington -0.475
                22 Atlanta -0.504
                23 Memphis -0.849
                24 Chicago -0.945
                25 LA Clippers -1.031
                26 Miami -1.43
                27 Toronto -1.514
                28 Denver -2.047
                29 Cleveland -2.116



                http://www.usatoday.com/sports/sagarin/nba0203.htm
                (This is Sagarin's combined rating, which he actually doesn't like as
                much as his Predictor, which ranks Dallas at the top. He had a fit a
                couple years ago when the BCS said you can't consider point
                difference in ranking teams if you want to be part of the rating
                system. Frankly, neither side did it right. Point difference is
                relevant up to a certain theoretical cutoff, but Sagarin's work can't
                deal with it and the BCS just had political motivations. Sagarin's
                work still is good...)

                Rank Team Power
                1 San Antonio Spurs 97.95
                2 Sacramento Kings 97.17
                3 Dallas Mavericks 96.99
                4 Los Angeles Lakers 94.58
                5 Portland Trail Blazers 93.93
                6 New Jersey Nets 93.92
                7 Minnesota Timberwolves 93.43
                8 Utah Jazz 92.54
                9 Detroit Pistons 92.04
                10 Philadelphia 76ers 91.95
                11 Phoenix Suns 91.57
                12 Houston Rockets 91.51
                13 New Orleans Hornets 91.35
                14 Indiana Pacers 91.2
                15 Seattle SuperSonics 90.56
                16 Boston Celtics 90.21
                17 Milwaukee Bucks 89.78
                18 Orlando Magic 89.72
                19 Golden State Warriors 89.55
                20 New York Knicks 88.52
                21 Washington Wizards 87.84
                22 Atlanta Hawks 86.96
                23 Memphis Grizzlies 86.71
                24 Los Angeles Clippers 85.82
                25 Chicago Bulls 85.45
                26 Miami Heat 83.71
                27 Toronto Raptors 83.24
                28 Denver Nuggets 81.63
                29 Cleveland Cavaliers 80.19

                DeanO
              • John Hollinger
                I studied this very topic each of the past two years. In 2001-02 playing in the East was worth about a game in the standings for most teams, in 2002-03 it was
                Message 7 of 9 , Aug 8, 2003
                  I studied this very topic each of the past two years. In 2001-02
                  playing in the East was worth about a game in the standings for most
                  teams, in 2002-03 it was worth closer to two games. This might be
                  smaller than people imagine, but the reason is that regardless of
                  which league a team plays in, 56 of the games will be exactly the
                  same.



                  --- In APBR_analysis@yahoogroups.com, igor eduardo küpfer
                  <igorkupfer@r...> wrote:
                  >
                  > ----- Original Message -----
                  > From: ankurvdesai
                  > To: APBR_analysis@yahoogroups.com
                  > Sent: Thursday, August 07, 2003 5:48 PM
                  > Subject: [APBR_analysis] Re: East - West imbalance
                  >
                  >
                  > How do you know that the worst west teams are the worst teams in
                  the
                  > league? isn't it possible that their records are only worse than
                  > those of the east because they have to play the west juggernauts
                  more
                  > often? i think you'd have to have more detailed team-by-team
                  record
                  > data to make an assertion like the one in this post.
                  >
                  >
                  > I was looking only at interconference records. The worst teams in
                  the West had worse records against East teams than the worst East
                  teams had against Western teams.
                  >
                  > ed
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