FanPost

Is McGee a PF?

This started as a reponse to Prada's post about McGee and Stevenson, but then it got a little long and it's something that may generate more discussion.

I was tooling around 82games.com the other day, when I happened upon something interesting.  Take a look at McGee's by position page, then come back.

First, I want to acknowledge the sample size problem: there is a sample size problem.  However, McGee seems to be performing a lot better as a PF than a center.  Again, there is a sample size problem, but I started thinking about it, and in particular I want to draw attention to the opponent stats: McGee is allowing a 22.2 PER to opposing centers, but just a 13.1 PER to opposing PFs.  The only player with a better opponent PF PER is Taser (down around 11).

Opposing PFs are shooting an eFG% of .385 against him, whereas for opposing Cs it's .552.  Opposing PFs are also getting fewer rebounds and blocks, and shooting fewer free throws than opposing Cs.  And yes, there is a sample size problem.

It's also not entirely positive.  McGee has grabbed fewer rebounds as a PF, his own eFG% is a little lower, he has fewer blocks and more turnovers.  But, he's also fouling less (a lot less) and his own PER is a lot higher.

From a non-numbers standpoint, playing McGee at PF has some advantages, too.  First, until he develops that stronger upper body, he won't get knocked around as much by opposing PFs as he has with guys like Shaq and Yao.  His post moves are also pretty rough, so this would maybe give him a chance to work on those in practice while using his other offensive skills during games.  The fact that his foul rate is so much lower as a PF means that he can stay on the court for longer stretches of time, which is good for pretty much everyone.

I know that it's somewhat unrealistic to expect Tap to play McGee at PF for very long, both because the team doesn't have as much lineup flexibility up front anymore, and also because I get the sense that Tap establishes fairly rigid roles for his players in his own mind, whether or not a player's ability and skill set matches that role.  (There's also a sample size problem.)  And yes, I know it's hard to look at a 7'6" (and growing?) guy as anything but a pivot.  But it wasn't that long ago that 6'11" guys were seen the same way, until enough players came along with the skills to change that perception.  Maybe McGee is one of those types of players.

This represents the view of the user who wrote the FanPost, and not the entire Bullets Forever community. We're a place of many opinions, not just one.

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