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Sixers in the Clutch: How Have They Done?

Wow, thanks Statman. This is great stuff. I didn't think Jrue's turnovers were going to be that high, and that's really with limited times running the offense. Maybe I owe Doug an apology.

This clears up a lot of questions, good read

Let's recall that 'kobe clutch' was disproven just a while ago.

I tend to think of clutch as the basketball equivalent of RISP - random noise and small sample size always gets in the way

johnrosz on Feb 3 at 23:44

How about Lou leading the team in assists in the clutch

I don't find that surprising, I mean, look at how much he's handling the ball (36 FGA and 22 FTA). The great number is only 3 turnovers. Jrue's done a much better job of setting people up with his 8 assists, but he's also been about 5x worse at taking care of the ball.

johnrosz reply to Brian on Feb 4 at 0:26

yeah, I suppose so. It just seems like some of those shots have been as bad as turnovers with how poor his shot selection seems late. That 3 he took against Orlando as time expired sticks in my mind as one of the worst shots I've ever seen in that situation

I think collectively the DP community is too hard on him, myself included. Of course it's easy to say that after a Good Lou performance like the other night

johnrosz reply to johnrosz on Feb 4 at 0:34

DF. not DP.that's something else...

It just seems like some of those shots have been as bad as turnovers with how poor his shot selection seems lately. That 3 he took against Orlando as time expired sticks in my mind as one of the worst shots I've ever seen in that situation

I think it was you that had a great line, that you'd rather see Lou dribble the ball for 22 seconds and then fire it into the stands. He hasn't committed many turnovers in crunchtime, but some of his possessions have been exceptionally ugly (in addition to the one you mentioned, there was the one vs. the Bucks *after* he made the go-ahead 3, and another one most recently vs. the Grizzlies that resulted in a 24-sec. violation).

Tray reply to Brian on Feb 4 at 1:38

Well, Lou's doing better getting assists in the clutch than Mr. Clutch, Kobe, who I understand has somehow managed to rack up 0 assists in clutch situations over the last couple seasons. I'm kind of surprised to see that Lou hasn't been a total black hole late in games.

On a really random note, do you think there will come a day when bloggers will get MVP votes? We live in a world in which Derrick Rose, in the voters' eyes, is a stronger MVP candidate than LeBron James. Derrick Rose is the best offensive player on the league's 18th best offense. His team has a .700 record because it's the best defensive team in the league, something which he has next to nothing to do with. Non-ridiculous arguments could be made that Noah, or Boozer, is that team's best player. Meanwhile, LeBron's the same player he has been the last few years, the best in the league. Playing with Wade hasn't suddenly decreased his value, and if you want to make the dumb "Miami would still be really good without him" argument, consider that without LeBron Cleveland's one of the worst teams in the history of basketball. 51, 11 and 8 - only one other player's done that in the past 25 years, Michael Jordan. Going into tonight, two players in the past quarter-century had had 50-10-8 games - Jordan and Kobe. People want to snub, in LeBron, one of the dozen or so greatest talents to ever play the game in favor of a guy who might be the league's third best point guard. Or, if Durant has a few more 40-point games, he'll win it just because he happens to be a nice guy.

Personally, I don't think either guy is really worthy of being the MVP. LeBron's the best player in the game, hands down, but I don't think he's any more valuable to the Heat than Wade is. Take either one of them away, and the team is still a top four seed in the East. I agree with your logic on Rose. I don't think I'd give it to Durant, either. You can make the case that Westbrook is more important to that team at this point. Dwight Howard is my MVP, now that LeBron's not winning 60 games with a crap supporting cast. Orlando is absolutely nothing without him.

"Dwight Howard is my MVP"

Thank You. It's amazing they are a top 10 defense with that roster. No one is more important to his team(you could make a case for cp3 tho).

If it's not Howard or Lebron, this will be the worst MVP year ever.

"Dwight Howard is my MVP"

Thank You. It's amazing they are a top 10 defense with that roster. No one is more important to his team(you could make a case for cp3 tho).

If it's not Howard or Lebron, this will be the worst MVP year ever.

Not connected to the post but it's an interesting read.


In short the writer ranks the top 24 in his mind that have never made an allstar team. Iguodala is No.4 and Holiday is no.20(!!!!).

Great stuff Statman. Keep it up.

The really troubling thing is their horrible horrible defense in that stretch. It's really weird considering that the Sixers are supposed to be a good defensive team. Who are all those points scored against? I guess that's the most important quesion...


Who are all those points scored against? I guess that's the most important question...

This is a good question, and it can't be answered easily from the play-by-play. But we can look at who was responsible for all the last-possession plays where opponents trailed and either tied or went ahead of the Sixers:
* Wizards 11/2: Cartier Martin 3-pt (Iguodala)
* Wizards 11/2 (OT): Blatche 2 FTs (Brand)
* Wizards 11/23: Wall 3 FTs (Holiday)
* Wizards 11/23 (OT): NYoung 3-pt (Turner)
* Celtics 12/9: Garnett lay-up (Holiday/Young)
* Pistons 1/8: Daye 3-pt (Turner/Nocioni)
* Magic 1/19: JRichardson 3-pt + 1 (Iguodala)

The Sixers have gotten some stops in those situations, but all but one of them have come on missed 3-pointers:
* Wizards 11/23: NYoung missed 3 (?)
* Pistons 1/8: Villanueva missed 3 (?)
* Bucks 1/14: Maggette blocked (Iguodala)
* Bucks 1/14: Boykins missed 3 (?)
* Bobcats 1/17: SJackson missed 3 (?)
* Magic 1/19: RyAnderson missed 3 (?)

And FYI, the Sixers have only converted two tying or go-ahead possessions in the last 24 seconds all year: Iguodala vs. the Celtics on 12/9 and Lou vs. the Bobcats on 1/17 (though Iguodala did have a go-ahead jumper with 37 secs. left in OT vs. the Bobcats).

One point about the end-of-game plays is that not only is the defense more intense (so baskets are generally harder to score), but presumably the best offensive plays are being used. So it stands to reason that "normal" defense won't cut it, and the Sixers have been burned by well-designed plays (e.g., Garnett, Nick Young, Daye) in addition to their own mistakes.

deepsixersuede on Feb 4 at 6:19

Good stuff statman; the best news about this subject is we may have the answer to our clutch scoring and better late game "D" here already in Turner. When the day comes where Lou is used as a bridge to rest our main guys during the 2nd and 3rd quarters rather than late in the game this team should grow.

And Brian's point about Sam, not him so much but a better defensive big than currently here would allow our coach to not play small at the end of games.

I don't know what's more impressive, Sixers' numbers or Statman's research.
Great job really man, appreciate, now we know a lot more about our guys.

"opponents turn into a collective Steve Nash in the clutch (91% in Ultra-Clutch situations)". Classic

Story: Sixers get two chances to close gap on Knicks:


Brand: 'Our confidence is pretty high right now':


Good work Statman.

IMO the big take home message is that their late game defense stinks. Not surprising when you insert Lou, shift Jrue to SG and go small up front. So you end up with substandard defenders at 4 positions (Jrue is not a great SG defender and Brand is undersized at C, while Thad and Lou are who they are.)

I understand these substitutions in terms of getting your most talented players on the floor. But the teams most talented players do not fit well as a defensive unit... which is why they don't start games with them all on the floor.

Not an easy answer, unless you decide to remove Lou fronm the unit.

Not an easy answer, unless you decide to remove Lou fronm the unit.

Except, you know, that's the easy answer, but Collins sticks to the idiotic dogma of the need for isolations on a team that has no one who excels at them...it's especially awesome to watch a lead dwindle with Lou on the court since his defense is so pathetic

mchezo reply to tk76 on Feb 4 at 10:37

before you decide who to remove from the unit shouldn't there be an analysis of how good someone defends during crunch time also?

eddies' heady's reply to GoSixers on Feb 4 at 11:09

Lou and Jrue are pretty much a wash. For the amount more that is given up with Lou on the floor compared to Jrue, the team scores that much more on offense with Lou on the floor. And Lou has a better Win%.

Jrue's on the ball defense has been very sporadic this whole year too. Probably as bad as Lou's at times.

tk76 reply to mchezo on Feb 4 at 12:48

I'd say Jrue would defend better at crunch time if he is playing PG. He is less effective guarding SG's (this is a generalization.) I'd venture that Turner is better at covering most SG's than Jrue.

Putting Lou on the floor with Jrue necessitates that Jrue covers the SG.

Fairly interesting video of Collins on playing against zone defenses:


Fresh off of dissing Philly, Andre Miller has awesome comments about Griffin's All-Star spot:

“It’s all publicity and hype,’’ Miller said. “The league don’t appreciate the blue collar workers. They don’t appreciate that. They make their money off the high-flyers ... That’s a slap in the face to [Aldridge].’’

“They are putting this guy on every ESPN highlight. Yeah, it’s cool because fans want to see that, but you isolate him from his team,’’ Miller said. “Especially ... he ain’t made nobody better. It’s basically his rookie year, as an All-Star? LeBron James didn’t make an All-Star team as a rookie.’’

“LA was supposed to make it. He was supposed to make it,’’ Miller continued. “We have a better record than those guys (the 19-29 Clippers), and LA is putting up just as good numbers. Now, you are not going to see a lot of highlights -- Blake Griffin highlights and stuff like that -- but they are giving these young guys too much respect. Too much respect to the young guys."

Interesting point he makes about James, but LeBron wasn't nearly as good as a rookie as Griffin is. Pre All-Star break, he was shooting 40%; he was particularly lousy in January, shooting 37% from the field and 17% (!) from three on three attempts a game.

If the game wasn't in LA - I don't believe Griffin would be on the team - It's great that you wanna compare overall numbers - but how is Griffin when he ain't dunking?

Andre Miller is rapidly becoming as stupid sounding as Gilbert Arenas - (though Arenas interview in the Post about his ex trying to destroy him might be some of the best paranoia I've ever read).

He's definitely endearing himself around the league in a time when he's considered one of the most likely names to be moved at the trade deadline, maybe this is calculated cause he doesn't want to leave Portland, I mean all that rain, who would want to leave?

The all-star game is a joke - top to bottom - the only thing more ridiculous is people getting even the slightest bit upset over who makes it or who doesn't.

I'd be more 'outraged' over when guys who missed at least half the season are voted in as starters (Yao, all the time, I think Vince got it once too), or the fact that Tim Duncan IS a center but never gets listed as one cause Tim don't wanna be a center

Tray reply to GoSixers on Feb 4 at 12:39

Griffin scored 47 in a game in which he had one dunk, so that's how he is when he's not dunking, in one game at least. I mean, otherwise he has a highly raw but extremely dynamic post game, featuring a series of ridiculously quick spin moves. And an improving mid-range shot. There's also his rebounding and general hustle.

You're right - one game is the best way to determine how a guy is when he's not dunking.

Lebron was better than Griffin at the rim in rookie seasons, he was also better beyond 10 feet, and he shot a lot more from outside than griffin did.

Also, Griffin has slightly more talent around him than Lebron and lebron averaged 27.3/6.7/6 his rookie year

Griffin is at 23/12.7/3.6

I don't see griffin 'blowing' Lebrons doors off except in rebounds where, quite reasonably, it should be expected he does.

There is also the hype factor - griffin had some hype - lebron had massive hype - i don't htink any player has entered the league with that much hype (deserved or not) since Magic - with the pressure of saving their home town team - on a franchise that people actually care to see competitive and would like to see win.

I can't really buy your argument that Griffin is having a better rookie year than Lebron had, especially since in many areas of the game, lebron was superior, including one where Griffin should be better (close at the basket) and griffin has more talent around him than Lebron did

tk76 reply to GoSixers on Feb 4 at 12:55

Lebron should have made it as a rookie by most standards. They froze him out.

Just curios

Do you think if the game were in NY or Florida Griffin would get in (I think in the 'south west' he'd get in as an oklahoma appeal thing)?

tk76 reply to GoSixers on Feb 4 at 13:00

I have no idea. It is all a popularity contest- which makes the Lebron omission glaring.

But IMO the main reason Griffin got in is that the Clippers have been winning a bunch more. I actually think Iguodala would have gotten some more attention this year had he not missed 12 games due to injury.

The reason I think the LA thing is an influence for Griffin getting picked is that I feels it's the same reason a guy like Bledsoe got into the game over Turner.

It simply has to be because of the the game being played in LA. There is no other realistic explanation for picking Griffin. The Clippers have only 19 wins and thus far they've had the easiest schedule in the league. They've already played a fantastic 30 home games compared to 18 road games.

And if wins don't matter Love should be ahead of Griffin any day of the week.

If you're making winning a priority, the Blazers are 3 games over .500 and the #8 seed in the West, 1/2 game away from the missing the playoffs altogether. Does that really warrant special treatment for Aldridge? And please don't give me the injury excuse, even without Brandon Roy, Portland has more talent than both LAC and MIN. If we were talking about a guy on a top team in the league vs. Griffin and Love, then fine. You can say it's about winning, but Portland barely has its head above water. For what it's worth, the Sixers have a higher playoff seed, and a more secure road to a playoff berth, than Portland.

Tray reply to GoSixers on Feb 4 at 13:15

I think Griffin would get in wherever because he leads every highlight package every night he plays, and backs that up with great numbers that make it clear he's not just a highlight show. Obviously here we're dispassionate statistical observers of the game, but the excitement factor means a great deal to casual fans. People watch these games to see what players like Griffin will do in them. I might even watch the game to see Paul throw alley-oops to Griffin.

tk76 reply to tk76 on Feb 4 at 12:58

Lebron's rookie year these were the SG/SF reserves:

Artest, Pierce and Redd.

Heck, Jamaal Magloire was on the East's All Star team that year and he averaged 13/10/1.2blk. And Lebron didn't make that team?

Tray reply to tk76 on Feb 4 at 13:09

So he should have gotten in over Carter, but Carter was the voted-in starter. The three subs were having just as good years as LeBron was, maybe better. As for Magloire, he's a center so he's special.

tk76 reply to Tray on Feb 4 at 13:38

Yeah, you are probably right. His rookie numbers were not that great to be a shoe in selection.

23/12.7/3.6 on 52% is more impressive (Griffin)

tk76 reply to tk76 on Feb 4 at 13:39

Is it fair to say that you want players their All-Star year to put up numbers that would be HOF worthy if they average those same stats for a career?

Tray reply to tk76 on Feb 4 at 13:46

That's probably not fair because, a, in any given year there may be not enough players putting up HOF numbers, and b, positional constraints demand some pretty ordinary big men make All-Star teams. Take this year's Eastern team - I don't think Garnett, Pierce or Allen are putting up HOF numbers. Allen's shooting real well, but I don't think there are many Hall of Famers who averaged 17 a game, with little else, and made it in just on the basis of three-point accuracy. Though Reggie's a Hall of Famer, or will be, and averaged just 18 over his career, but that's because of his peak years, and the lifetime career achievement of hitting all those threes.

Your numbers are WAY off for LeBron. You're looking a hoopdata, which doesn't go back to his rookies season. He averaged 20.9, 5.5 and 5.9 as a rookie, and shot 41.7% from the floor. That's also his entire rookie season, not what he did prior to All Star selection.

Damn - i wasn't looking too closely at the years - just the first line - assumed hoopdata had it all - bugger - trying to do too many things at once...ah well.


Tray reply to GoSixers on Feb 4 at 13:07

Wait, LeBron averaged 21 a game his rookie year. Anyway, looking at the 2003 All-Star team, since LeBron's classified as a G-F for All-Star purposes, it looks like the question is whether he should have made it in over Pierce, Redd, Artest, McGrady, or Vince Carter. I think that, with how LeBron was struggling offensively at the time the selections were made, you can make a pretty reasonable argument that he shouldn't have gone in over any of those 5. Though now that I look at it, Carter was pretty awful pre-All-Star break that year.

My points aren't valid cause it turns out in my flu haze I was looking at the wrong year and didn't notice.

Then again, tk76 (per usual) made much better points than I could have to counter your point

I don't have a man-crush on Griffin like some, and I clearly hate Aldridge, but it doesn't seem very close between the two guys from the outside looking in.

And Griffin actually does get a lot of assists kicking the ball out when teams are focusing on him, while Aldridge enjoys taking long jumpers.

Tray reply to Brian on Feb 4 at 12:48

I've been very disappointed in Aldridge's career; in college I thought he had the makings of a classic post player, kind of a Duncan lite. Instead, as we all know, he became a mid-range jump shooter, which is highly unfortunate given that he's not even very good at making them, like a David West. However, he does seem to have made some major strides this year. It's surprising to look at the shot location numbers and see that in spite of getting more shots this year, his long-range attempts are actually down, while his interior shots are way up. I give him some credit for carrying a beat-up team to a decent record, though he's not even the second most deserving snub. Obviously Love and Randolph have had better seasons.

Brandon Roy was holding Aldridge back with endless pick-and-pop plays, whereas Miller gets him the ball in the post more often.

tk76 reply to Brian on Feb 4 at 12:54

Andre Miller lost me when he said LaMarcus Aldridge and Blue Collar in the same sentence.

LA: 17
BG: 28

Blue collar implies doing the dirty work, like defensive rebounds. When did LA start?

Tray reply to tk76 on Feb 4 at 12:58

I think by blue-collar he just means, "players who aren't super-athletic, like me." Players who can jump over 7-footers are, by definition, snooty white-collar types who have life handed to them on a silver platter of natural talent.

Andre Miller considers himself super athletic?

The guy who comes to camp out of shape every year and takes 10 games of the regular season to get into basketball shape?

He said Miller doesn't consider himself super-athletic.

You're right - i just have to stop now - stupid flu is making me dizzy :)

Maybe i'll be better come game time - hope so :)

Tray reply to GoSixers on Feb 4 at 13:10

I'm saying Miller likes players who are like him. Doesn't like players who are not. Also, recall that Miller's wonderful consecutive games played streak was snapped because of a suspension he earned for bull-rushing Griffin, because he was mad about something. So now he hates Blake.

Andre Miller did something stupid to Blake Griffin
he got suspended for said stupid thing he chose to do
So in your mind he now hates Blake Griffin?

Didn't realize that you felt Andre Miller was that petty and self absorbed

Andre Miller wasted two years in Philadelphia - but I don't hate him for that - it ain't his fault, it's not Griffins fault Miller was stupid

Tray reply to GoSixers on Feb 4 at 13:18

Okay, maybe he doesn't hate him but he resents him. He was very upset when the streak was snapped, he ranted to the press about how the league disrespected his awesome achievement of going injury-free for several seasons. And no, I don't hate Miller. He's a funny personality; I'll miss his Eeyoreish demeanor when he's gone.

Interesting that you should find his self centeredness and ego so appealing as so many people call Iguodala out for that constantly.

Miller falls into the Favre/Ripken category for me in terms of selfishness and ego over team - he just was never in the same talent stratosphere as either of them - (The Jeter category of selfishness is slightly below Favre/Ripken)

Tray reply to GoSixers on Feb 4 at 13:27

Um, I guess I look at basketball - maybe life in general - more as a comedy than as a morality play, and selfish people can be funny. I don't find Miller's brand of ego particularly appealing, but it's fun because it's unexpected, as in theory he's this wonderful unselfish distributor of the ball. But then he opens his mouth and he's a perpetual malcontent.

Oh and in honor of All-Star selections, and TruePhan's musings on the hip-hop NBA, when East and West were alike because East was too busy recording amateur freestyles to play with the sort of physicality that, today, would embarrass a Yao Ming, should he ever have played in our conference and faced the likes of Eddy Curry on a regular basis, I bring you the best All-Star introductions ever.


Shawn reply to Tray on Feb 4 at 14:45

That was awesome.

Tray reply to Shawn on Feb 4 at 15:17

It'd be cool if they did it today but I shudder to think of what rapper they'd choose. Some people think the two rappers who did the '89 intros recorded the best rap album of all time (Critical Beatdown). It wasn't really a big hit when it came out, one year prior, so it's pretty surprising that the league somehow knew to pick them.

Tray reply to GoSixers on Feb 4 at 15:05

Well I don't think he really means Ellis should have made the team, as he lists nearly a dozen "snubs." Love's the only one he actually thinks should definitely be there. I don't know, if you make a list of the dozen best non All-Star players, Ellis... probably shouldn't be on it, but I could see an argument. The West is pretty stacked this year; consider this Kevin Martin factoid:

Martin is averaging 26 points per 36 minutes on a True Shooting percentage of .620. A list of other players who have done this in NBA history: Amar'e Stoudemire, Charles Barkley, Karl Malone and Adrian Dantley.

And he's not an All-Star.

Informative piece on "black holes," with a great graphic showing where Iguodala (among many others) stacks up in shot attempts/assists.


tk76 reply to Tray on Feb 4 at 15:29

That is a tremendous graphic. Both in terms of information and creative use of graphics.

And by that chart, Iguodala already qualifies as a "point forward"- in case there was any doubt.

Is Jrue on there?

tk76 reply to tk76 on Feb 4 at 15:30

Never mind, I found him. Sort of middle of the pack.

Tray reply to tk76 on Feb 4 at 15:37

I can't really tell though, looking at it, whether Player X shoots more per assist than Player Y. Like how does Martin compare to Kobe? Martin assists less, but he also shoots substantially less; I can't tell whether he's more of a black hole than Kobe or not. It'd be nice if, in addition to that graphic, he just had a simple line graph plotting the ratio.

I don't believe this is pure shots. TOVs are also part of usage rate.

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