The amount of basketball information available to the public is stunning, if not a bit overwhelming. NBA.com provides a ton of useful tidbits to its fans, including the ability to re-watch every single recorded stat as a clip. The closed-to-the-public media portion of the website once provided much more advanced on court/off court numbers to those who write about the game, but those statistics are now readily available to the public. With the amount of information available, this time is a good one to be a fan of the NBA.
It's also a good time to be a writer. The league's movement toward advanced statistics have paved the way for some authors and statisticians to create their own models to track and project players. Today, there's a plethora of independent, uniquely carved sites for almost every stat you can imagine. It just takes some good ol' Internet digging to find those sites and determine which are useful.
One such website, Counting The Baskets, founded and run by Andrew Johnson, has created a complex model to predict the NBA Draft using a series of different college statistics. Using something called Alternative Win Score as the independent variable and running the Draft class through a series of tests, Johnson created a graphic that ranks and weighs everyone from the 2012 Draft class. There are a ton of numbers involved and different measures and you're better off reading the post for yourself, rather than trying to learn from me how it all works. Johnson's chart reorders the Draft class by something called Actual Rank.
According to this metric, Kyle O'Quinn ranks the best out of all Orlando Magic's 2012 draftees. Johnson's model ranks O'Quinn sixth overall, just behind Anthony Davis, Andre Drummond, Terrence Jones, Damian Lillard and John Henson. The Magic picked 49th overall, meaning his rank in this model deviates 43 selections, by far the highest of any other player in the class.
The model also appreciates Maurice Harkless. His Actual Rank is 10, placing him five spots ahead of where the Philadelphia 76ers selected him. Only Jared Sullinger, Mike Scott and Miles Plumlee separate Harkless and O'Quinn. Doron Lamb was selected no. 41, ranks 10 spots higher in this exercise. Lamb's ability to shoot the long ball probably drives up his ranking; there is always room on NBA rosters for players who can shoot the rock.
Andrew Nicholson, however, doesn't fare as well as his Magic peers. Drafted 19th by Orlando, Nicholson's Actual Rank is 34, a full 15 spots lower than where Orlando selected him. The 24-year-old's no. 34 ranking puts him behind the likes of Austin Rivers, Lamb, Darius Miller, Meyers Leonard and just one spot ahead of Arnett Moultrie.
So what does the Orlando Pinstriped Post community think of this new metric? Does this re-draft mean anything to you, and how much do you trust the results?