Contributing Writer: Dom Tesoriero
Ah yes, Analytics. Before you channel your inner Eddie Johnson and close your tab, thinking this is just another confusing and honestly meaningless display of random numbers, I ask that you pause. I promise you this isn’t that! The point here isn’t to bore you with a bunch of writing and technical analysis, rather just to present some interesting numbers in a clear and fun way, where you can take whatever you want from the visuals. And indeed, they all have something to do with our Suns.
4th Quarter Drop-offs
Something a fair few have picked up on has been our 4th quarter struggles, with our offense especially dropping off a cliff. Not something you’d expect given our off-season moves, however with some positive regression on O (via CP and Book regaining their isolation clutch ability), and with the defense holding up well already, maybe a turn for the better isn’t too far away.
*Note that the basic aim is to be in the top left corner for each quarter.
Ayton’s Rim Protection
Points saved looks at the difference between expected points allowed within 6 feet of the rim and what actually occurred. I’ve aggregated it here as a waterfall chart to highlight how far DA has come. All 5s should be trending upwards (as naturally a 7-footer should hold opponents to a worse % at the rim than a 6-foot guard), however he is legitimately up there with the best these days. This is pretty awesome considering he was one of the worst rim protectors (among bigs) in the league his rookie year.
Points Produced Per Touch
The lighter/larger the data point, the better!
Points produced per touch relates points produced (points scored + points generated from assists) on a per touch basis. Very role dependent (for example naturally spot up shooters see their numbers inflated – Galloway for instance), but interesting none-the-less. A fall off for Booker and his historic 2019/2020 campaign, but a PPPT of 0.558 still sees him in 12th overall league wide (and 8th among engines).
Not all points are created equal! So how are our lads getting theirs?
As a simpler version, the below distinguishes just between assisted and unassisted points. Among other things, this is an incredibly important factor when looking at an individuals shooting splits, as naturally it is significantly harder to create your own shot efficiently.
Net Rating Worries
Fair to say Booker and CP are yet to click, holding a -6.75 NetRtg in 330 minutes together. Some growing pains were to be expected early, which is why this will be something to monitor on a game-to-game, block like basis going forward. As of right now however, an upwards trend is yet to appear (there were some signs in that first Denver game though).
This flows on to issues with our starting 5, regardless of if it’s been Cam or Crowder. On the season, the starters and Cam are -10.73 per 100 in 62 minutes, whilst with Crowder they’re a -5.03 in 200 minutes. Again, game-to-game, block like monitoring is the way to look at this as the season progresses, however it too isn’t showing any signs of progressing.
Editor’s Note: Everyone please welcome Dom Tesoriero to our writing team, and be sure to give him a follow on twitter: @Dom_Tesoriero. He’s an excellent follow and provides some insightful and unique approaches to covering the sport.
Categories: Phoenix Suns