Now is as good a time as any to evaluate how the Sixers have done so far this season, so I put together a "report card" of sorts to grade the main eight players in their rotation (with apologies to Nocioni, Speights, and others who have not played enough to receive grades).
First, a note about my grading system. I graded each player relative to other players at their same position, not taking into account whether they were starters or reserves. For me, the mean is about a C+ (I do realize that many people who read this blog are younger than I am and went to colleges where the mean is a B+). I weighted my grades slightly toward more recent performance.
Some comments about my categories:
- "Shooting" refers to shooting efficiency, a combination of True Shooting percentage (league average about 53%) and Effective Field Goal percentage.
- "Shot selection" refers to the frequency with which a player takes "good" shots for him, weighted (subjectively) by whether the shots come within the flow of the offense.
- "Scoring" refers to the ability to produce points when needed, roughly reflected by points per minute.
- "Playmaking" refers to the ability to set others up for easy baskets, roughly weighted (subjectively) by playmaking opportunities.
- "Ball care" refers to turnover rate, weighted (subjectively) by ballhandling frequency.
- "Defensive anticipation" refers to getting steals and blocks and drawing charges.
- "Defensive positioning" refers to the ability to effectively challenge shots by the opposing player.
- "Help defense" refers to a player's willingness and effectiveness in covering for others' defensive breakdowns.
- "Teamwork" refers to how well a player maximizes the performance of the team when he's on the floor.
- "Attitude" refers to a player's willingness to do what is asked of him and to support others in their roles.
- "Overall" roughly averages the component grades but gives emphasis to certain components for different positions (e.g., playmaking and ball care is more important for the PG, defensive rebounding is more important for the PF and C).
I did a little analysis to come up with some of the grades, but many of them are nonetheless subjective. I'll be interested to read all of your thoughts: are there any grades that you disagree with by, say, a full letter? There was one surprise to me in looking at the numbers: Hawes' defensive rebound rate is pretty good for a center, not far below what Dalembert's is this year (Dalembert last year was better, but last year's Dalembert was at the top of the league). So I couldn't give Hawes lower than a C- overall.
Finally, a bonus set of grades for the coach:
|Motivation of Players||A-|
|Communication - Players||B+|
|Communication - Media||A|
|Planning / Scouting||B+|
Now it's your turn: how would you grade the Sixers and their coach? Which players do you see improving over the rest of the season, and which (if any) will fall back?