FanPost

Beyond advanced statistics and the Case for MORE isos / post isos

Taken from Raptors' SportVu video tracking system analysis (which we don't have, and which all the stat geeks go crazy over), as reported by Grantland's Zach Lowe today. Link: http://www.grantland.com/blog/the-triangle/post/_/id/55110/the-sportvu-follow-up-answering-the-most-common-questions-and-more-ghost-players

• Here’s something interesting: Toronto’s analytics team believes isolations — those selfish and allegedly inefficient plays — might be very good things for some offenses, and the Raps’ current data suggests possessions that end via some event that results from an isolation are about as efficient as pick-and-rolls that do the same. This is where the SportVU data can go beyond something like Synergy, a stat-tracking tool every team uses. Isolations come out as very low-efficiency on Synergy, since Synergy measures only shots that come from the player isolating one-on-one. It doesn’t precisely measure what happens when that player draws help and kicks to a spot-up shooter, and when that spot-up shooter then drives, draws more help, and kicks to an even more open shooter who knocks down a 3.

The Raptors are doing that, and they’ve found isolations in that larger sense are quite efficient — at least for teams with the right personnel. “They’re fabulous for us,” Rucker says.

• The same is true of post-ups, which are low efficiency on their own, but much higher when you include shots that come via kick-out passes to open shooters and other trickle-down events — at least according to Toronto’s data. Post-ups are also more likely than other plays to lead to some end-of-possession event, and not to the resetting of the offense.

Isn't it funny how Synergy was doing a good job disproving the eye test (and an entire NBA history's worth of data) on efficacy of isos and post isos...... before we found a more advanced analytical technology that shows just how misleading Synergy's numbers were?

In the NBA world, it's like we've just discovered the world is round. The scientists are going to disprove each other and be disproved at a pretty quick pace for the next decade. Just something to keep in mind the next time we use Synergy to try to show something.

All comments are the opinion of the commenter and not necessarily that of SLC Dunk or SB Nation.

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