Four Factors Box for Opening Night vs Mavs

Four Factors Box Score Opening Night

For general explanation, see the prior post.  I'll skip commenting on the contents of this box.  (I will, however, try to answer any questions in the comments.) 

Instead, a few notes on format and method.

Format:

For this box (this isn't the final say on how it will be formatted), I've only included the "Four Factors" categories and minutes and +/-, with no percentages and no other stats (i.e., no assists or blocks).  And, I paired up the good and bad sides of each Factor next to each other.  For 3 out of the 4, the offensive category is on the left.  The exception is turnovers, where TO created is to the left and TO committed is to the right.  This makes more sense to me visually, as having the good to the left and the bad to the right lets you (or me, anyway) more easily subtract and get the net.

Where the categories are the same as the regular box score categories, I went with the official scorekeeper version of events.  So, for example, while I might be completely convinced that an offensive rebound was misallocated, I just went with the official decision.  On the other hand, in the case of "turnovers created," I did not just accept the officially-recorded steals and roll them into TOCreated.  The primary example of this was a play early in the game when Marion very clearly caused the turnover (bad pass) but Kidd got credited with a "steal" on the basis that when Marion made the ball go to Kidd, Kidd caught it.  Whatever.

Method:

I tracked one category not discussed in the prior posts:  Offensive rebounds allowed.  I'm not totally sold on it yet, but I think it makes some sense.  Looking at offensive rebounds makes near perfect sense from the offensive part of the FF perspective.  Looking at defensive rebounds does, without a doubt, tell you something about the other side of the coin.  But not everything.  It can mislead.  For example, a player can easily accumulate uncontested defensive rebounds while also allowing offensive boards, padding his stats while killing the team.  For that reason, I'm reluctant to use offensive and defensive rebounds as the two categories.  So, after some experimentation, I'm tracking times when a defender allowed someone he was responsible for in rebounding to get an offensive board.  Not every offensive board is equated to someone allowing it, however, as there are a number of times in a game where because of transition opportunities, zone defense, etc., it would be very unfair to penalize any specific defender who just happened to be closest.

As to the allocation of Field Goals Defended, I did (obviously) adopt half credits.  I'll run an "official" version of the rules at some point, but the gist is that I tracked things as laid out in the earlier post/comments, with the wrinkles that (1) if two players were defending at the same time, they split credit, and (2) if a perimeter defender forces or allows the offensive player to a spot and another defender helps, they split credit (including plays that are essentially blow-bys where help is still around).  A very important corollary to those two is that responsibility for shots in pick and rolls will almost always be split between the two defenders on the play. 

It was easy to do without half credits in the preseason games because there are so few pick and rolls run.  In a regular season game, however, using half credits made vastly more sense. 

Incidentally, it gets easier and easier to do the tracking.  Aside from a couple of times when I needed to stop to reconcile what I thought I saw versus what the refs or official scorer actually did, I'm now doing this at game speed.  On the other hand, I'm bad with both spreadsheets and using blogging software, which is why this is running two days late and you have to click through to a pdf.

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