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DeanO in the P-I

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  • John Hollinger
    http://seattlepi.nwsource.com/basketball/205859_sonx30.html The Ridnour discussion is interesting. I ve found that with first- year point guards, their
    Message 1 of 7 , Dec 30, 2004
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      http://seattlepi.nwsource.com/basketball/205859_sonx30.html

      The Ridnour discussion is interesting. I've found that with first-
      year point guards, their performance has much less correlation with
      eventual success than any other position.
    • Medea's Child
      I ll apologize in advance if the below is somehow a faux paus in posting etiquette for these groups. If there are any Clipper fans on this list who might be
      Message 2 of 7 , Dec 30, 2004
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        I'll apologize in advance if the below is somehow a
        faux paus in posting etiquette for these groups.

        If there are any Clipper fans on this list who might
        be interested in going to tomorrow's game against the
        Spurs, I have a ticket I'm not using, if anyone on
        either of these groups wants it.

        It looks like the seat is pretty good (section 111,
        row 8).

        E-mail me off list if interested. (No, I'm not
        selling it, I'm giving it away)








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      • Michael Tamada
        ... From: John Hollinger [mailto:alleyoop2@yahoo.com] Sent: Thursday, December 30, 2004 7:35 PM ... The other thing that I found interesting was the
        Message 3 of 7 , Dec 31, 2004
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          -----Original Message-----
          From: John Hollinger [mailto:alleyoop2@...]
          Sent: Thursday, December 30, 2004 7:35 PM


          >http://seattlepi.nwsource.com/basketball/205859_sonx30.html
          >
          >The Ridnour discussion is interesting. I've found that with first-
          >year point guards, their performance has much less correlation with
          >eventual success than any other position.

          The other thing that I found interesting was the characterization
          of Wally Walker as the stats-oriented type (no surprise there, given
          his UVa and MBA background) and Rick Sund as the intuition-oriented
          type. Presumably, many of the recent personnel decisions have been
          made by Rick Sund, who seemingly deserved the blame when the Sonics
          roster last season, and at the beginning of this season, looked
          woefully under-talented. And Sund presumably deserves the credit
          when the roster and talent mix in fact seems to have been brilliantly
          designed and developed.

          But if Sund indeed deserves much of the credit for the current
          Sonics roster, he's apparently doing so using old-fashioned
          techniques, rather than new-fangled "Moneyball" or "BoP" (Basketball
          on Paper) techniques.

          Of course, Walker is probably one of the more hands-on owners/presidents
          out there, given his background, so he may deserve a chunk of the
          credit too, rather than Sund.

          Yet another possibility is that the Sonics roster truly is mediocre
          in terms of its talent level, and what is setting them apart this
          season is that they a roster playing good basketball, rather than
          a roster of good players. I.e. it's coaching and team play rather
          than talent.

          I don't know, but somebody's doing something right.


          --MKT

          --MKT
        • Dean Oliver
          One thing I have said in the interviews but hasn t shown up in the articles is that Roland s 82games material is quite useful. I m using a ton of my own work
          Message 4 of 7 , Jan 4, 2005
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            One thing I have said in the interviews but hasn't shown up in the
            articles is that Roland's 82games material is quite useful. I'm using
            a ton of my own work (some in the book, some not), but the detail that
            can come out in the data that Roland compiles is very very nice. It
            is a great way to break down both our own team and future opponents
            for attackable weaknesses, for instance. Team tendencies become more
            clear, including ones you can't see upon watching. Some of what I use
            from Roland isn't on his main site (more premium material), but a lot
            of what is on that basic site can come in handy for communicating
            certain points. Really, coaches are just people managers, so giving
            them info that helps them manage, even if it just confirms their
            beliefs, is valuable. Giving them tools to improve the players or how
            to use the players (two different things) -- that's more valuable than
            overall ratings and that can come from some of what Roland has.

            --- In APBR_analysis@yahoogroups.com, "Michael Tamada" <tamada@o...>
            wrote:
            >
            > The other thing that I found interesting was the characterization
            > of Wally Walker as the stats-oriented type (no surprise there, given
            > his UVa and MBA background) and Rick Sund as the intuition-oriented
            > type. Presumably, many of the recent personnel decisions have been
            > made by Rick Sund, who seemingly deserved the blame when the Sonics
            > roster last season, and at the beginning of this season, looked
            > woefully under-talented. And Sund presumably deserves the credit
            > when the roster and talent mix in fact seems to have been brilliantly
            > designed and developed.

            The dynamic of decisions is complex in the organization, but the
            characterizations of the people are about right. It's been great for
            me to earn Rick's trust despite him being less quantitatively oriented.

            > I don't know, but somebody's doing something right.

            In Moneyball, Billy Bean was primarily concerned about getting his
            team to the playoffs. That is viewed as a pretty good measure of
            success in baseball. In the NBA, it isn't as valid a measure (for
            obvious reasons). NBA playoff coaches get canned fairly often
            (Bzdelik being a recent example). Successful playoff coaches don't
            get canned often. Success is winning a bit in the playoffs. So we
            have a lot left to accomplish -- well beyond any regular season win
            total -- to consider this season a success.

            DeanO

            Dean Oliver
            Consultant to the Seattle Supersonics
            Author, Basketball on Paper
            http://www.basketballonpaper.com
            "Excellent writing. There are a lot of math guys who just rush from
            the numbers to the conclusion. . .they'll tell you that Shaq is a real
            good player but his team would win a couple more games a year if he
            could hit a free throw. Dean is more than that; he's really
            struggling to understand the actual problem, rather than the
            statistical after-image of it. I learn a lot by reading him." Bill
            James, author Baseball Abstract
          • Michael Tamada
            ... From: Dean Oliver [mailto:deano@rawbw.com] Sent: Tuesday, January 04, 2005 10:51 AM [...] ... One great thing about the Sonics and Suns is that they ve
            Message 5 of 7 , Jan 4, 2005
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              -----Original Message-----
              From: Dean Oliver [mailto:deano@...]
              Sent: Tuesday, January 04, 2005 10:51 AM

              [...]

              >beliefs, is valuable. Giving them tools to improve the players or how
              >to use the players (two different things) -- that's more valuable than
              >overall ratings and that can come from some of what Roland has.

              One great thing about the Sonics and Suns is that they've continued the
              trail set by the Kings and Mavericks, showing that one can have an
              up-tempo, offensively oriented team which is nonetheless a good team.
              (Championship team? That's another matter).

              And the Sonics, if one believes that their roster is not filled with
              a particularly scary amount of talent, have continued the examples
              shown by the Pistons, Argentinian Olympic team, etc. in which team
              play and team effort overcame the seemingly superior individual talent
              level of teams such as the Lakers and USA Olympic team.

              Up-tempo, team-oriented basketball. What a concept.

              [...]

              >get canned often. Success is winning a bit in the playoffs. So we
              >have a lot left to accomplish -- well beyond any regular season win
              >total -- to consider this season a success.

              As I've mentioned on a Sonics email list, this could shape up to be
              the best Sonics season since 1978 -- although the Sonics will at
              a minimum have to make it to the Finals to match that incredible
              Cinderella season. But I think even non-Sonics fans have to
              appreciate what the Sonics and Suns have accomplished so far this
              season. DeanO's right that they really haven't accomplished anything
              yet, the season's only 1/3 over so it's too early to be handing out
              awards, but what a 1/3 of a season it's been. Some positives have
              been going on, to balance out the Pacer-Piston slugfest.


              --MKT
            • John Hollinger
              ... the best Sonics season since 1978 Woooooooooaahhhhh -- didn t they win 64 games with Glove and Rainman? ... how ... than ... the ... team. ... talent ...
              Message 6 of 7 , Jan 4, 2005
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                >>>this could shape up to be
                the best Sonics season since 1978

                Woooooooooaahhhhh -- didn't they win 64 games with Glove and Rainman?





                --- In APBR_analysis@yahoogroups.com, "Michael Tamada" <tamada@o...>
                wrote:
                > -----Original Message-----
                > From: Dean Oliver [mailto:deano@r...]
                > Sent: Tuesday, January 04, 2005 10:51 AM
                >
                > [...]
                >
                > >beliefs, is valuable. Giving them tools to improve the players or
                how
                > >to use the players (two different things) -- that's more valuable
                than
                > >overall ratings and that can come from some of what Roland has.
                >
                > One great thing about the Sonics and Suns is that they've continued
                the
                > trail set by the Kings and Mavericks, showing that one can have an
                > up-tempo, offensively oriented team which is nonetheless a good
                team.
                > (Championship team? That's another matter).
                >
                > And the Sonics, if one believes that their roster is not filled with
                > a particularly scary amount of talent, have continued the examples
                > shown by the Pistons, Argentinian Olympic team, etc. in which team
                > play and team effort overcame the seemingly superior individual
                talent
                > level of teams such as the Lakers and USA Olympic team.
                >
                > Up-tempo, team-oriented basketball. What a concept.
                >
                > [...]
                >
                > >get canned often. Success is winning a bit in the playoffs. So we
                > >have a lot left to accomplish -- well beyond any regular season win
                > >total -- to consider this season a success.
                >
                > As I've mentioned on a Sonics email list, this could shape up to be
                > the best Sonics season since 1978 -- although the Sonics will at
                > a minimum have to make it to the Finals to match that incredible
                > Cinderella season. But I think even non-Sonics fans have to
                > appreciate what the Sonics and Suns have accomplished so far this
                > season. DeanO's right that they really haven't accomplished
                anything
                > yet, the season's only 1/3 over so it's too early to be handing out
                > awards, but what a 1/3 of a season it's been. Some positives have
                > been going on, to balance out the Pacer-Piston slugfest.
                >
                >
                > --MKT
              • Michael Tamada
                I should have clarified what I meant by best : not best outcome (1979 clearly beats both 1978 and 1996 in that regard), nor most wins. What I meant was most
                Message 7 of 7 , Jan 4, 2005
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                  I should have clarified what I meant by "best":
                  not best outcome (1979 clearly beats both 1978 and 1996 in
                  that regard), nor most wins.

                  What I meant was "most incredible", "most enjoyable",
                  "most memorable" ... along those lines.

                  1978 beats both 1979 and 1996 because the Sonics literally
                  came out of nowhere to make it all the way to Game 7 of
                  the Finals.

                  By 1996, the Sonics were a regular 60-game winner. In 1979,
                  they were a repeat finalist; everyone knew they were good.

                  But in 1978, the Sonics were coming off a chaotic, mediocre
                  season (which was both a cause and an effect of Bill Russell's
                  resignation), and they started the season a miserable 5-17.
                  A mediocre team fraying into disarry.

                  Lenny Wilkens stepped in as head coach (after Bob Hopkins
                  was fired), replaced almost the entire starting lineup
                  (Slick Watts, Fred Brown, Paul Silas, Bruce Seals) with
                  a cast of then unknowns (Gus Williams, Dennis Johnson,
                  John Johnson, rookie Jack Sikma) and the Sonics went on
                  to win 70% of their remaining games and make it all the
                  way to the Finals, the first time a Seattle major pro
                  sports team had ever advanced so far (unless you count
                  the 1977 Sounders making it to the Soccer Bowl as a major
                  pro team).

                  The word "Cinderella team" doesn't even begin to describe
                  that 1978 Sonics squad. Has there ever been such a sharp
                  mid-season turnaround in NBA history?

                  That's what makes the 1978 season "best", better by far
                  than 1996 or even 1979, not in terms of outcome, but in
                  terms of a team exceeding expectations, and also making
                  a historic (by Seattle standards) achievement by making
                  it to the Finals.

                  This 2005 Sonics team did not have the burden of a 5-17
                  start, just an 0-1 shellacking by the Clippers (almost
                  as embarassing). But pre-season, they probably had
                  even lower expectations than the 1978 team did in
                  pre-season, so if they do make it to the Finals, with
                  an excellent won-loss record, they'll have matched
                  the 1978 team, IMO, in terms of exceeding expectations.


                  --MKT


                  -----Original Message-----
                  From: John Hollinger [mailto:alleyoop2@...]
                  Sent: Tuesday, January 04, 2005 4:52 PM
                  To: APBR_analysis@yahoogroups.com
                  Subject: [APBR_analysis] Re: DeanO in the P-I




                  >>>this could shape up to be
                  the best Sonics season since 1978

                  Woooooooooaahhhhh -- didn't they win 64 games with Glove and Rainman?





                  --- In APBR_analysis@yahoogroups.com, "Michael Tamada" <tamada@o...>
                  wrote:
                  > -----Original Message-----
                  > From: Dean Oliver [mailto:deano@r...]
                  > Sent: Tuesday, January 04, 2005 10:51 AM
                  >
                  > [...]
                  >
                  > >beliefs, is valuable. Giving them tools to improve the players or
                  how
                  > >to use the players (two different things) -- that's more valuable
                  than
                  > >overall ratings and that can come from some of what Roland has.
                  >
                  > One great thing about the Sonics and Suns is that they've continued
                  the
                  > trail set by the Kings and Mavericks, showing that one can have an
                  > up-tempo, offensively oriented team which is nonetheless a good
                  team.
                  > (Championship team? That's another matter).
                  >
                  > And the Sonics, if one believes that their roster is not filled with
                  > a particularly scary amount of talent, have continued the examples
                  > shown by the Pistons, Argentinian Olympic team, etc. in which team
                  > play and team effort overcame the seemingly superior individual
                  talent
                  > level of teams such as the Lakers and USA Olympic team.
                  >
                  > Up-tempo, team-oriented basketball. What a concept.
                  >
                  > [...]
                  >
                  > >get canned often. Success is winning a bit in the playoffs. So we
                  > >have a lot left to accomplish -- well beyond any regular season win
                  > >total -- to consider this season a success.
                  >
                  > As I've mentioned on a Sonics email list, this could shape up to be
                  > the best Sonics season since 1978 -- although the Sonics will at
                  > a minimum have to make it to the Finals to match that incredible
                  > Cinderella season. But I think even non-Sonics fans have to
                  > appreciate what the Sonics and Suns have accomplished so far this
                  > season. DeanO's right that they really haven't accomplished
                  anything
                  > yet, the season's only 1/3 over so it's too early to be handing out
                  > awards, but what a 1/3 of a season it's been. Some positives have
                  > been going on, to balance out the Pacer-Piston slugfest.
                  >
                  >
                  > --MKT






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