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Kareem similarity

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  • Dean Oliver
    I took to comparing several of Kareem s seasons to other players. The ones that stand out as most similar to him are Ewing and Olajuwon. (I don t have a
    Message 1 of 1 , Sep 18, 2001
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      I took to comparing several of Kareem's seasons to other players.
      The ones that stand out as most similar to him are Ewing and
      Olajuwon. (I don't have a system for career numbers worked out, so
      it is just a predominance of seasonal comparisons.) Duncan and
      Robinson fall behind a bit, though I must say that the similarity to
      Duncan's numbers is more than I anticipated. Robinson is more
      dissimilar than I thought because I forgot how many points he gets at
      the line, which is different than Duncan or Kareem.

      When I was thinking about offense vs. defense for these guys, I was
      thinking of numbers like these -- offensive and defensive ratings for
      Kareem:

      Scor. Poss. Floor RTG Points Def Stops Def.
      Poss. Pct. Prod. Total /Poss Rtg.
      1978 766 1358 0.564 110.6 1501 732 0.717 90.5
      1980 970 1647 0.589 115.1 1895 858 0.615 97.1

      The average offensive rating in these two years was about 99 and
      103.5. So Kareem was 11-12 pts/100 poss better each year
      offensively. His defense was 9 pts better then 6 pts better.

      Last year, the two Spurs had these #'s:

      Scor. Poss. Floor RTG Points Def Stops Def.
      Poss. Pct. Prod. Total /Poss Rtg.
      Duncan 887 1683 0.527 104.2 1755 785 0.655 91.3
      Robinso 555 999 0.555 111.9 1118 627 0.701 89.5
      (Lg avg Rtg = 101.3)

      In 1998, it was like this:

      Scor. Poss. Floor RTG Points Def Stops Def.
      Poss. Pct. Prod. Total /Poss Rtg.
      Robinso 759 1342 0.566 108.6 1458 638 0.694 90.5
      Duncan 819 1523 0.538 103.9 1583 784 0.653 92.1
      (Lg avg Rtg = 103.2)

      Robinson's efficiency #'s are more like Abdul-Jabaar's, which is why
      I thought of him first before Duncan. Duncan's offensive
      efficiency #'s aren't that much better than average, as I said.

      In general, I don't find too many players similar to Kareem. These
      two both have some characteristics, but aren't inherently similar.
      The top similarity scores of 700-800 seem about right. (Doesn't
      account for pace, as MikeG's do.)

      Dean Oliver
      Journal of Basketball Studies
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