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Wizards can’t overcome Golden State’s offensive onslaught

Stats, analysis and commentary

Washington Wizards v Golden State Warriors
Wizards center Kristaps Porzingis drives against the Golden State Warriors.
Photo by Lachlan Cunningham/Getty Images

The Wizards and Golden State Warriors put on an entertaining pyrotechnic offensive show with wild swings in score, and the Wizards came up short.

Washington had just two players whose offensive efficiency was below league average: Corey Kispert and Deni Avdija. Golden State also had two: Jonathan Kuminga and Moses Moody.

The Wizards had their 11th best shooting night in franchise history — 67.5% effective field goal percentage — and were outshot by the Warriors (69.7% efg). For Golden State, it was only the 13th best in franchise history.

Neither team was missing shots, both offenses were humming through multiple actions and lightning counters, and both defenses suffered numerous letdowns. The Warriors generated 40 assists on 52 made field goals.

Wizards guard Bradley Beal told reporters after the game, “We just didn’t guard. That’s why we lost.”

Beal also had this defensive possession in the fourth quarter that was emblematic of his defensive effort throughout the game.

About those wild swings in score: Washington took a 15-point lead early in the second quarter and fell behind by as much as 20 in the third quarter.

Good Stuff

  • Washington’s 130 offensive rating was the team’s fourth best of the season.
  • Kristaps Porzingis dominated inside early and finished the game with 34 points on just 16 field goal attempts. The Warriors did a good job of limiting his touches as the game went on.
  • Kendrick Nunn played well — 5-7 from the floor, a pair of threes, and 6 assists to just one turnover. He was good enough that fans on Twitter were talking about him joining the starting lineup. (That’s premature at best. His hyper-efficient performance last night pushed his offensive rating with the Wizards to about three points per 100 possessions below league average.)
  • Daniel Gafford had 5 assists, a couple of which came on excellent passes.
  • Solid game from Anthony Gill, who scored 6 points and had a couple blocks in 12 minutes.

Not So Good Stuff

  • Beal played well, though his performance was a bit less than met the eye. Some of his buckets had Warriors announcer Kelenna Azubuike swooning, but his overall efficiency was just 119. That sounds great, and it is a little better than league average, but within the context of this one game, it was well below average — 11 points per 100 possessions below Washington’s output, and 20 below Golden State’s. And his defensive inattention cost the Wizards multiple scores.
  • One mar on an otherwise stellar offensive night: turnovers. The Wizards had 17, including 4 each from Beal and Porzingis, and 3 from backup guard Delon Wright.
  • Kispert’s disappearing act is problematic because his only significant contribution is making threes, and occasionally attacking a closeout or making a nice cut. His usage rate last night: just 9.3%.
  • Gafford’s overall performance was meh. He got pushed around inside by Kevon Looney, who grabbed 5 offensive rebounds. Gafford’s top priority this offseason should be to get stronger without losing mobility.

Four Factors

Below are the four factors that decide wins and losses in basketball — shooting (efg), rebounding (offensive rebounds), ball handling (turnovers), fouling (free throws made).

I’ve simplified them a bit. While the factors are usually presented as percentages, I often find the raw numbers more useful when analyzing a single game.

Four Factors: Wizards at Warriors

EFG 0.675 0.697
OREB 9 11
TOV 17 15
FTM 18 11
ORTG 130 139

Stats & Metrics

Below are a few performance metrics, including the Player Production Average (PPA) Game Score (very similar to the one I used to call Scoreboard Impact Rating). PPA is my overall production metric, which credits players for things they do that help a team win (scoring, rebounding, playmaking, defending) and dings them for things that hurt (missed shots, turnovers, bad defense, fouls).

Game Score (GmSC) converts individual production into points on the scoreboard. The scale is the same as points and reflects each player’s total contributions for the game. The lowest possible GmSC is zero.

PPA is a per possession metric designed for larger data sets. In small sample sizes, the numbers can get weird. But some readers prefer it, so I’m including PPA scores as well. Reminder: in PPA, 100 is average, higher is better and replacement level is 45. For a single game, replacement level isn’t much use, and I reiterate the caution about small samples producing weird results.

POSS is the number of possessions each player was on the floor in this game.

ORTG = offensive rating, which is points produced per individual possessions x 100. League average last season was 112.0. Points produced is not the same as points scored. It includes the value of assists and offensive rebounds, as well as sharing credit when receiving an assist.

USG = offensive usage rate. Average is 20%.

ORTG and USG are versions of stats created by Wizards assistant coach Dean Oliver and modified slightly by me. ORTG is an efficiency measure that accounts for the value of shooting, offensive rebounds, assists and turnovers. USG includes shooting from the floor and free throw line, offensive rebounds, assists and turnovers.

+PTS = Tentatively dubbed “plus points,” this stat is a measure of the points gained or lost by each player based on their efficiency in this game compared to league average efficiency on the same number of possessions. A player with an offensive rating (points produced per possession x 100) of 100 who uses 20 possessions would produce 20 points. If the league average efficiency is 114, the league — on average — would produced 22.8 points in the same 20 possessions. So, the player in this hypothetical would have a +PTS score of -2.8.

Note: I dropped points scored from the table because a) it’s easily available just about everywhere, and b) there’s a limit to the number of columns I could use in the tables.

Stats & Metrics: Wizards

Kristaps Porzingis 36 72 148 28.6% 7.1 174 24.0 -14
Bradley Beal 35 70 119 36.1% 1.3 150 20.1 -16
Kendrick Nunn 29 59 162 15.1% 4.2 179 20.1 -3
Monte Morris 29 58 138 12.0% 1.6 101 11.2 -10
Delon Wright 19 39 116 21.5% 0.1 141 10.6 1
Daniel Gafford 28 57 161 13.5% 3.6 97 10.6 -15
Anthony Gill 12 25 132 17.9% 0.8 148 7.1 0
Deni Avdija 27 55 87 18.1% -2.7 45 4.8 13
Corey Kispert 22 44 76 9.3% -1.6 34 2.8 -4
Quenton Jackson 3 6 204 13.0% 0.7 98 1.1 3

Stats & Metrics; Warriors

Andrew Wiggins 39 78 143 23.0% 5.2 209 31.4 21
Klay Thompson 36 72 124 28.1% 2.0 183 25.3 2
Kevon Looney 31 62 203 12.3% 6.7 210 24.9 11
Donte DiVincenzo 25 51 145 19.7% 3.1 207 20.3 -7
JaMychal Green 16 32 235 18.0% 7.0 299 18.4 -7
Ty Jerome 18 37 172 18.6% 4.0 241 17.1 12
Jonathan Kuminga 13 26 107 22.8% -0.4 131 6.6 6
Draymond Green 24 48 120 11.4% 0.3 31 2.9 3
Moses Moody 8 17 65 9.4% -0.8 54 1.7 11
Jordan Poole 30 60 95 25.3% -2.9 -7 0.0 -7