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PAAC Friday – Best and Worst Offensive impact in NBA and Mailbag

PAAC is an offensive statistic that evaluates how a player compares to an average player in the NBA.   PAAC stands for Point above average created.   For example, last season LeBron James used 22.6 scoring opportunities a game.   He scored 2.8 pts per game more than an average player or a collection of average players would have used with those same scoring opportunities.

This is an offensive only statistic.  It doesn’t weigh turnovers.  It focusses solely on how a player uses his offensive scoring opportunities.

For a little history on how to understand PAAC.  The best PAAC players over the past years have been

YEAR PLAYER PAAC
2011-12 Kevin Durant 3.2
2012-13 Kevin Durant 4.9
2013-14 Kevin Durant 4.8
2014-15 Kevin Durant 4.0
2015-16 Steph Curry 5.8
2016-17 Kevin Durant 3.8

 

Last year there were 2 players above 3 PAAC (Durant and Isaiah Thomas) and another 9 over 2 PAAC (James Harden, Steph Curry, LeBron James, Rudy Gobert, Karl Anthony-Towns, Kyle Lowry, Kawhi Leonard, DeAndre Jordan, Nikola Jokic, Danilo Gallinari and Bradley Beal.

Each season there are usually 2 or 3 players over 3 PAAC and on average 10 players over 2 PAAC.

As of games including November 9th here are the Top 10 PAAC players in the 17-18 Season

 

PLAYER TEAM PAAC
LeBron James Cle 5.1
Giannis Antetokounmpo Mil 5.0
Kevin Durant GSW 4.1
Steph Curry GSW 4.0
Anthony Davis GSW 4.0
Aaron Gordon ORL 3.5
James Harden HOU 3.2
Otto Porter WAS 3.2
Clint Capela HOU 2.9
Karl Anthony Towns MIN 2.9

 

The next 10 are Evan Fournier, Tony Snell, Kristaps Porzingis, Rober Covington, Klay Thompson, Rudy Gobert, Nemanja Bjelica, Enes Kanter, Steven Adams and Domantas Sabanois.

LeBron James at this age, having played over 40,000 career regular season minutes is having a season that is shattering all concepts of what a player should be able to do at this stage of their career.  It should be a bit terrifying to Cavaliers fans that he is this good so far and the team is not winning.  Looking at the past best years in the NBA it is unlikely that either LeBron or Giannis will be able to maintain this level of excellence.

The takeaway here is the Orlando Magic currently have 3 of the top 20 players in the NBA, as do the Golden State Warriors.   Two players traded away from the Oklahoma City Thunder in Enes Kanter and Domantas Sabonis are both in the top 20.   The top 10 list is very similar to last season with the new addition of Aaron Gordon.

The 10 worst PAAC players this season.   Think of as having the most negative impact

 

PLAYER TEAM PAAC
Lonzo Ball LAL -5.2
Donovan Mitchell UTA -3.2
Lance Stephenson IND -3.0
Ersan Ilyasova ATL -3.0
Marcus Smart BOS -2.9
Russell Westbrook OKC -2.9
Caris Lever BRK -2.9
Terrence Ross ORL -2.8
Da’Aaron Fox SAC -2.8
Dennis Smith DAL -2.7

 

Absolutely no surprise this list is laden with rookies.  The league is really hard and rookies are not good offensively and most of all early in the season.  On the other hand,  Westbrook as the 6th most negative offensive player in the NBA may tell you a lot about why the Thunder are below .500 and on a 4 game losing streak.  The new structure of the Thunder is keeping Westbrook away from the possessions where he is most efficient, early shot clock, and it is having an adverse impact on his game.

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David Locke enters his ninth year as the radio play-by-play voice of the Utah Jazz, having spent the majority of his career in radio in Salt Lake City and Seattle. In the summer of 2016, Locke created the Locked on Podcast Network which has podcast daily bite sized podcasts for every NBA and NFL team. A native of Palo Alto, Calif., Locke graduated from Occidental College in Los Angeles with a degree in Political Science and Sociology. Locke and his wife have a son and a daughter.

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