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@FunakiEjectsAnother [#GiveSinglerWaitersMins] @Keith00 NP, it's pretty amazing to see the numbers like that.
1 day, 10 hours ago on Down To Dunk: Steve McPherson gives perspective
@FunakiEjectsAnother [#GiveSinglerWaitersMins] This has an obvious inflationary effect on players' statistics of that era. The 1961-62 Royals played 31 percent more possessions than the 2014-15 Thunder, but it's hard to tell that from the treetops because the clock stayed the same at 48 minutes. But players of that era had more opportunities to pile up statistics. This is like if Babe Ruth played in 12-inning games rather than nine.
The 1961-62 Westbrook stat line
Playing on a team that averaged an estimated 124.9 possessions every 48 minutes, Robertson averaged 30.8 points, 12.5 rebounds and 11.4 assists per game in 1961-62. Playing on a team with a 95.5 possessions every 48 minutes, Westbrook has averaged 27.6 points, 7.2 rebounds and 8.6 assists.
OK, you ready for Westbrook's pace-adjusted stat line?
Here you go: 36.1 points, 11.2 assists and 9.4 rebounds per game. 36-11-9.
Oh, you thought I was done? We haven't even made the minutes adjustment yet. I left out a key wrinkle. The stars back in 1961-62 had another inflationary effect to their per-game numbers: they basically played every minute. In fact, Wilt Chamberlain averaged 48.5 minutes per game in 1961-62. Yeah, more than regulation. It's no surprise to learn that that's the same season he averaged 50.4 points per game. He basically never left the court.
He wasn't alone. Bill Russell averaged 45.2 minutes. Elgin Baylor averaged 44.4 minutes. Essentially one player on every team averaged over 40 minutes per game. And Robertson? He averaged 44.3 minutes. When framing Robertson's numbers, that's an important distinction as well. Westbrook this season has somehow packed in 28-9-7 in just 34 minutes per game.
Now let's see what happens to Westbrook's numbers when we adjust for not just Robertson's pace, but his minutes, too.
Westbrook's era-adjusted stat line (warning: this might be NSFW):
Try 46.9 points, 14.6 assists and 12.2 rebounds.
That's not a typo. Statistically, he'd approach 50-15-12 if we adjust for the pace and playing time.
If this seems extreme, here's what Grantland's Bill Simmons had to say about the zany 1961-62 numbers, in particular Robertson's and Chamberlain's, in "The Book of Basketball" after studying the era:
"Hard to take those numbers at face value, right? And that's before factoring in offensive goaltending (legal at the time), the lack of athletic big men (significant) and poor conditioning (which meant nobody played defense). I watched a DVD of Wilt's 73-point game in New York and two things stood out: First, he looked like a McDonald's All-American center playing junior high kids; nobody had the size or strength to consider dealing with him. Second, because of the balls-to-the-wall speed of the games, the number of touches Wilt received per quarter was almost unfathomable ... Still impressed by Oscar's triple double or Wilt slapping up a 50-25 for the season. Sure ... but not as much."
And that's the right tone. The numbers are still impressive, but we have to put them in the proper context. Simmons, who wrote the book in 2009, went on to mention that Dwyane Wadewould average 35-10-10 if he played in 1962 -- "of course he would." Considering his undersized athleticism and vicious basket-attacking skills, 2009 Wade is probably the closest recent comp to Westbrook.
So, after accounting for pace and playing time, we can estimate what Westbrook's numbers would look like in that era. It doesn't seem like such a stretch once we figure that he's already averaging about 28-9-7 in about 72 possessions per game, and he'd see about 40 more possessions if he played in Robertson's era. That's a ton of opportunities for Westbrook to go baseline-to-baseline in 3.3 seconds and dunk all over everybody.
Old-timers probably won't like the statistical adjustments here. And that's fine. There is something to be said for fatigue. The extra 40 or so possessions that Westbrook would be on the court would be taxing on the body and he probably wouldn't be able to maintain those per-minute numbers if he needed to pace himself for a longer night.
But it also seems silly to question Westbrook's stamina against a 1960s defense. If he's putting up triple-doubles against the sophisticated defenses now, just imagine what he'd do in a league where defense wasn't a priority.
Of course, this isn't meant to diminish Robertson's accomplishments. He's still one of the best players ever, and the triple-double season likely won't ever be touched in the same way that we'll probably never see another starting pitcher throw 73 complete games in a season like Old Hoss Radbourn did in 1884.
The goal here is to demonstrate how amazing it is that Westbrook is putting up triple-doubles in just 34 minutes per game. And next time you hear a buddy say it's crazy that Robertson averaged a triple-double for an entire season, feel free to say it was crazy. But so was the league back then. And so is Westbrook's ability to routinely put up triple-doubles now in just a fraction of the time.
@FunakiEjectsAnother [#GiveSinglerWaitersMins] Oscar Robertson and Russell Westbrook's names have been linked a lot lately as Westbrook continues to pile up double digits in the stat sheets. Westbrook has accumulated nine triple-doubles this season and seven of those came within a jaw-dropping 12-game stretch. Robertson, of course, knows a thing or two about triple-doubles. In 1961-62, the Big O averaged 30.8 points, 12.5 rebounds and 11.4 assists to become the first and only player to put up a triple-double season.
In the ESPN The Magazine set to hit stands April 13, Robertson was asked about Westbrook's triple-double rampage and said the OKC star has "upped his game."
As much as Westbrook has "upped" his game, it's hard to wrap our heads around doing this for an entire season, which Robertson famously did. It's safe to say Westbrook's 2014-15 season couldn't hold a candle to Robertson's monstrous 1961-62, right?
Not so fast. Because of defensive climate, league pace and playing time, Westbrook's season is just as impressive as Robertson's historic season in 1961-62. As always, context is everything.
A different league
The NBA was so different in 1962 that it doesn't even seem like Westbrook and Robertson played in the same league. For one, there were only nine teams in 1962. There was no 3-point line. The league didn't even track turnovers, steals and blocks, nor did they discern offensive rebounds from defensive ones.
But above all, perhaps the biggest difference between 1962 and 2015 is the pace of play. The NBA operates at a snail's pace compared to the chaotic, helter-skelter hoops of 1962.
Because there was no record-keeping of turnovers, it's difficult to draw an apples-to-apples comparison of how many possessions there were in a typical NBA game back then. However, the genius researchers at Basketball-Reference.com can help paint a picture.
According to their records, Robertson's Cincinnati Royals averaged a baffling 105.2 field goal attempts per game, which was actually on the low end that season compared to the league norm (Red Auerbach's Boston Celtics averaged a league-high 113.9 en route to a championship). TheOklahoma City Thunder this season? That would be 86.2 field goal attempts per game, about 20 field goal attempts fewer. More shots, more misses, more possessions and ultimately more opportunities to rack up per-game stats.
In ESPN The Magazine's Point Guard Issue, Sport Science helps break down the signature play of Russell Westbrook's signature season. Story
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Though it's impossible to get an exact number due to the lack of turnovers, Basketball-Reference estimates that the Royals' pace factor that season was 124.9 possessions per 48 minutes. You remember that double-overtime game in January between the Phoenix Suns and Memphis Grizzlies? It was the longest game of the 2014-15 season, cranking out 123 possessions for each side. And still, Robertson's Royals averaged more than that every game.
This is an important factor when discussing Robertson's triple-double feat. You may think the 124.9 pace figure is too high to be accurate, but we can work back a bit. In that January marathon, Phoenix and Memphis each tallied 100 field goal attempts. The Royals averaged 105.2 on a nightly basis.
This was really disappointing news. I honestly feel like there's no more point in watching the NBA this year. I expect that will change in a couple days, but still.
Here's hoping KD can get fully healthy and the team can make the run we've been waiting for since 2012.
5 days, 6 hours ago on Kevin Durant done for the remainder of this season
@Mark50c I think Kanter actually makes sense against GSW. If they are playing big, Bogut isn't much of a scoring threat. If they are playing small, Kanter can kill them on the offensive glass. It's scary how having a good center changes things. We could theoretically force teams to match up with us, rather than the other way around.
1 week ago on Wednesday Bolts – 3.25.15
@propsizzle @Keith00 @DVoegeli Should I have said miserable failure? Would that be far enough?
@DVoegeli Did you predict Dion would be a failure in OKC?
@FunakiEjectsAnother [#GiveSinglerWaitersMins] Should Chicago even be excited by this? Rose hasn't been good for a while now.
@Pillendreher (Lamb sacrificed for Waiters faction) Because that's just the entire DT faction.
@Pillendreher (Lamb sacrificed for Waiters faction) If the team is actually healthy, i think Roberson makes more sense in the starting lineup. Ibaka covers for Kanter. Robes covers for Russ or KD. Russ-KD-Ibaka-Kanter is potent enough on offense, and Robes doesn't need the ball.
@Greeed @Keith00 @okcjim Obviously.
@TempBoy Brandon "If Waiters keeps this up" is kind of the point, though.
@Greeed @Keith00 @okcjim Wouldn't we have had to take money back to make a KD trade work? Pretty sure the other teams involved wouldn't have had enough expiring contracts for the Thunder to have big time cap space.
@Greeed @okcjim Then we would be in the same situation currently.
@anonymous12345 @KingGondo @Durantacula (The Masked Maniac) Do people still get excited for Rose? Even if he is healthy, he's not good anymore.
@Mother Teresa @The Dream Is Free CP3 has never been the reason his teams lost a series. He's actually been amazing in the playoffs. Using his playoff record to discount him is stupid.
1 week, 1 day ago on Tuesday Bolts – 3.24.15
@DakotaJohnsonLario Right now the Spurs have a favorable draw. They wouldn't play GS or LAC until the WCF. I'm not sure they would beat either of those teams, though.
@rednuht For me, no. He does most everything at a high level, but his best attributes aren't necessarily the ones I prize most.
@CjEasyMoney$(THUNDER) So a different version of the 7 seconds or less Suns? Draw the opponent into a certain style and then beat them by playing it better? Sounds like a good plan, actually. Nobody can really match GSW in a shooting contest.
Of course, they also play great defense. They've gone through stretches of offensive slogging, and have been able to win games on the back of stopping the opponent.
Just to throw this out there, but it's interesting seeing these kinds of lists and realizing how true it is that it takes at least a couple years for people to realize that players have lost it.
Rose has been a bottom 10 PG since his injuries started. Rondo as well has been terrible since his injury.
@Johnny Thunder @Lost Ones(#blackpride) @DakotaJohnsonLario I like all of those things.
The top tier of our survey included no fewer than eight 2015 NBA All-Stars, with Russell Westbrook edging Stephen Curry at the top of the list. Once an NBA question mark, Mike Conleyhad a solid showing in our survey, beating out the likes of Kyle Lowry and Tony Parker among those we polled.
1. Russell Westbrook, Oklahoma City Thunder (732 points, 13 first-place votes)
"He might be an alien. I've never seen anyone like him before. His athleticism and antics are off the charts." -- NBA executive
2. Stephen Curry, Golden State Warriors (727 points, 9 first-place votes)
"Maybe the best shooter we've ever seen in the NBA off the dribble. Probably the leading candidate for MVP this year." -- NBA executive
3. Chris Paul, Los Angeles Clippers (652 points, 3 first-place votes)
"Everything you could ever want from a point guard. Leads, scores and defends and knows exactly when to do each of those things." -- NBA executive
4. Kyrie Irving, Cleveland Cavaliers (630 points)
"He's an unbelievable finisher and his 50-point performance shows he can score at an elite level. However, he hasn't played in a playoff game yet. Can he knock down big shots when people are loading up on LeBron and the stakes are high? Can he make big shots in the playoffs? That's the question." -- NBA assistant coach
5. Damian Lillard, Portland Trail Blazers (614 points)
"He's as good as just about anyone on the list in terms of scoring the ball, especially in different ways. His biggest issue right now is on the defensive end. That's what could hold him back from getting into the top three." -- NBA point guard
6. John Wall, Washington Wizards (595 points)
"He has incredible speed, and is one of the top two or three in getting the ball up and down the floor. His big question mark is in the fourth quarter, game on the line -- whether he can get you a bucket when it's not a transition push. To his credit, he's shown he can get shots for others. That's an area he's really worked on." -- NBA assistant coach
7. Mike Conley, Memphis Grizzlies (570 points)
"He's so damn good and he gets better every year, He's pretty good defensively, and he's really improved his shot. He wasn't very good when he came into the league, but he has improved every year -- in every aspect of his game." -- NBA executive
8. Kyle Lowry, Toronto Raptors (550 points)
"He's tough, a complete pit bull, and he can both score and also set guys up. The question is whether he can take his team deep in the playoffs -- that's where you make your name. He gets a lot of steals, but doesn't always stay in front of guys on the defensive end." -- NBA executive
9. Tony Parker, San Antonio Spurs (511 points)
"He's probably towards the end of his career, but he's still a winner who finds a way. He's really hard to guard because he's so fast, and his shot has improved. He's also a good defender." -- NBA point guard
10. Jeff Teague, Atlanta Hawks (499 points)
"Great scoring point guard who has slowly, but surely improved his playmaking, defense and consistency as he's gotten older." -- NBA executive
@DakotaJohnsonLario They've been a top defense all year.
@DakotaJohnsonLario Everyone? They hide Curry, who can't really defend. Thompson is solid, Green and Bogut are elite. They have a great scheme.
@CollisonDoppelganger @KingGondo @Durants Shimmy Harden's ascent to MVP levels continues to hurt their ranking. It doesn't really matter that the trade was years ago, people are more aware of what was lost when they see James carrying a team to HCA in the playoffs. The Dion trade has been a failure, and deservedly should cause a hit to the ranking. Overall, though, I think dropping more than a spot or two is silly. The only reason the team isn't demolishing the league right now is health, which has nothing really to do with the front office.
@claeys @ Luke Sounds easy when you say it like that. Apparently he's a really slow learner.
@ Luke But then he wouldn't be Dion Waiters.
@TheresABabyFaceUnderMyBeard @Keith00 @Douse em WAITERADE I did read the convo from the previous thread. Maybe it's just that I have stopped trying to convince people of things they have no intention of learning.
@CollisonDoppelganger As always, it depends on what games you play and in what capacity. I don't think there's much reason to choose one console over the other, but I wouldn't be able to stay in touch with out of town friends without my PS4.
@TheresABabyFaceUnderMyBeard @Douse em WAITERADE I appreciate the explanation, but do we actually still need to be persuaded that Waiters sucks?
@Pillendreher (Lamb over Waiters faction) Davis>Westbrook. Nobody else matters ;-)
@KingGondo @Keith00 @sammasaaron If you aren't getting those things out of Destiny, you're doing it wrong. Or, you have a misunderstanding of how most online games work. It's not a pure RPG, you can't expect it to follow that level of battle strategy.
It's not for everyone. I was a big fan of old halo and borderlands. This is a good merge of the two.
1 week, 1 day ago on Monday Bolts – 3.23.15
@KingGondo @Keith00 @sammasaaron It's a FPS, not exactly sure what you're looking for. Dozens of maps, lots of bosses, raids, pvp.
@sammasaaron @Keith00 Not at all actually. Besides my friends who play, I've never had trouble finding a full party for raids.
@sammasaaron I'm still playing Destiny.
@Dion Shot First (Team Knee to the face) @Keith00 @Triple5 Except he's not... so?
@Im happy lamb wasnt traded Would any team in the league actually trade for him at this point? He's failed rather spectacularly when he was given shots (pre-Lebron Cavs), when he was asked to fit on a good team (Lebron Cavs), and on a team known for player development (Thunder). What teams is looking at him now as having any value?
The only team that might make sense is Philly if they need to hit the cap floor and still want to tank.
@eallen7 Would he need to pay to do that?
@Triple5 I thought Adams would break out more when he was handed the starting gig. Much as I like his personality on and off the court, he's looking more like a career backup than surefire starter. If we can only keep one, Kanter is obviously the more skilled. I don't think Adams breaks the bank in the future.
@TheresABabyFaceUnderMyBeard @ǝnlɐʌ ɟo ʇol ɐ pɐɥ ʞɹǝd @Douse em WAITERADE I all but guarantee he sees a max contract this summer. He might not have if he stayed with Utah, but he's absolutely killing it with OKC. And I think from a cost-reward perspective, OKC should give him that contract.
@ǝnlɐʌ ɟo ʇol ɐ pɐɥ ʞɹǝd @TheresABabyFaceUnderMyBeard @Douse em WAITERADE Given the huge escalations coming to the cap, does it matter? A max this year for four years will look more like an 11 million per year contract starting in 2016.
That's essentially how much we valued Reggie at, who has never been as good a player for us as Kanter is now.
@Durants Shimmy I could make an argument that he's as effective as players in the top 50 (Lopez, Jefferson).
1 week, 2 days ago on Monday Bolts – 3.23.15
@UnfortunatelyOptimistic Love, though Kanter is young enough to figure some things out still. Both are better defensively at the 5 because of limited athleticism.
@FunakiEjectsAnother [#GiveSinglerWaitersMins] @Keith00 Curry makes 11 million. He's still underpaid, but he's not even close to AD in that respect.
@FunakiEjectsAnother [#GiveSinglerWaitersMins] Still think you have to give that honor to Davis. Green is massively underpaid, and might be proportionally the most underpaid. However, Davis is arguably the best player in the entire league this year. Supermax players like that are still the best value available.
@Old Man Game Why? It's been that way for years. Derrick Rose is the all-time poster boy for giving MVP to the "best" player on the best team. At least Curry will have a realistic argument to make about being the best in the league. Further, any real Westbrook-for-MVP argument has to apply the same logic in order to leave out Anthony Davis, who has been even better than Westbrook in roughly the same number of games.
1 week, 2 days ago on Thunder show up on both sides, beat the Heat 93-75
@SadRobot @Pooksnubn @d21 Players don't suddenly lose the ability to shoot in a month without getting injured or old. Methinks you are just trolling here.
2 weeks ago on Week in Review: Hey, more injuries!
@rednuht @Keith00 @Webster81 My point is that the doctors should be in control of stopping him from rushing back and figuring out problems as early as possible. KD was suffering through pain and soreness for weeks before they finally decided to have surgery.
@Pooksnubn I would immediately cut Dion Waiters, then I would start negotiations with Kanter's agent (he can't actually sign until the offseason) on and extension. I would also start a search for a new coach, meeting with management to explain that the team has gotten as far as it can with Brooks and that another coach winning a championship may be the only way to keep KD. I would also start trying to steal doctors/specialists from Phoenix's training staff.
@Webster81 If you want to blame someone, the doctors should be first. It's their job to ensure he's healing and healthy. If the problem now really is a screw that has been rubbing on bone, why wasn't that picked up in the first or second scan? Thinking KD is soft ignores the point that the doctors must keep him out until his body is healthy enough to play. He's obviously been playing through pain for a while anyway, so I don't see where him being soft even factors in.