Thursday, June 30, 2016

WNBA “20”16: 6-Week Progress Report

Rookie WNBA Commissioner Lisa Borders seems to be taking an aggressive approach to providing more wide-spread exposure for her league. Not only were she and her people able to garner a Friday prime-time slot on NBATV for Week 6’s rematch between the unbeaten Lynx and Sparks … the addition to the national broadcast schedule was displayed prominently on the league’s website.

Kudos as well to the folks running the website, where the up-dating of statistical information seems much more prompt and thorough than in past seasons.


Fist-bump, indeed, Boss-lady!!


The following data reflects play through Friday, June 24.

We’ll rank the teams from 1 to 12 in all criteria and simply add up the rankings. Low score wins, naturally.

(The criteria is explained below.)

Progress Reports for 2-weeks and 4-weeks are also available.

No. 1 Los Angeles Sparks, 12-1 (9)
[4-week Abacus rating: 1
2-week Abacus rating: 1
2015 Abacus rating: 10]

KK:  +6; (7 Road Wins – 1 Home Loss) / No. 2 overall
Flow:  +5.08; (43.54 stops OF opp [No.4] – 38.46 stops BY opp [No.1] / No.2 overall
Striping:  +1.69; (+1.08) conversions [No. 2] – (-0.62) opp conversions [No. 1]) / No. 1 overall
SPOR-t:  +54; (561 [No. 4] – 507 [No. 3]) / No. 4 overall

Abacus Revelation: Coach Agler’s sure-handed pests rank No. 1 in both preventing and forcing TO’s.

No. 1 Minnesota Lynx, 13-1 (9)
[4-week Abacus rating: 2
2-week Abacus rating: 2
2015 Abacus rating: 2]

KK:  +7; (8 Road Wins – 1 Home Loss) / No. 1 overall
Flow:  +5.93; (46.64 stops OF opp [No.1] – 40.71 stops BY opp [No.2] / No.1 overall
Striping:  +0.04; (+0.61) conversions [No. 5] – (+0.57) opp conversions [No. 8] / No. 6 overall
SPOR-t:  +125; (571 [No. 2] – 446 [No. 1]) / No. 1 overall

Abacus Revelation: The Lynx have been the best defensive rebounding team so far.

No. 3 Chicago Sky, 6-8 (19.5)
[4-week Abacus rating: 3
2-week Abacus rating: 6
2015 Abacus rating: 3]

KK:  +1; (3 Road Wins – 2 Home Losses) / No. 4 overall (tied)
Flow:  +1.00; (41.79 stops OF opp [No.5] – 40.79 stops BY opp [No.3] / No.5 overall
Striping:  -0.32; (+0.39) conversions [No. 7] – (+0.71) opp conversions [No. 11] / No. 8 overall
SPOR-t:  +74; (606 [No. 1] – 532 [No. 4]) / No. 2 overall

Abacus Revelation: The Sky are the league’s least willing 3-point shooters, posting a usage rate of .144.

ABACUS INFOMERCIAL

Masters of the Craft (Part 1)

Which teams are performing the rudimentary skills of the game most proficiently at both ends of the floor? Let’s consider six elements of play: FG shooting, three-point shooting, Points per Game, Offensive Rebounding, the matter of turnovers and the SPOR-t score of our ratings. These teams hold a Top Four rank offensively and defensively:

FG%: Chicago, Los Angeles, Minnesota
3FG%: New York, Los Angeles
PPG: Chicago, Los Angeles, Minnesota
OR%: Chicago
TO%: Los Angeles
SPOR-t: Los Angeles, Minnesota


No. 4 New York Liberty, 10-4 (20)
[4-week Abacus rating: 4
2-week Abacus rating: 6
2015 Abacus rating: 1]

KK:  +3; (6 Road Wins – 3 Home Losses) / No. 3 overall
Flow:  +2.71; (45.36 stops OF opp [No.3] – 42.64 stops BY opp [No.7] / No. 3 overall
Striping:  -1.04; (-0.64) conversions [No. 11] – (0.39) opp conversions [No. 7] / No. 11 overall
SPOR-t:  +67; (559 [No. 5] – 492 [No. 2]) / No. 3 overall

Abacus Revelation: The Liberty are holding opponents to less than 40% accuracy from the field..

No. 5 Dallas Wings, 7-7 (24)
[4-week Abacus rating: 6
2-week Abacus rating: 4
2015 Abacus rating: 6]

KK:  -1; (3 Road Wins – 4 Home Losses) / No. 6 overall (tied)
Flow:  -3.21; (40.86 stops OF opp [No.9] – 44.07 stops BY opp [No.11] / No.10 overall
Striping:  +1.39; (+1.00) conversions [No. 3] – (-0.39) conversions [No. 2] / No. 2 overall
SPOR-t:  -13; (563 [No. 3] – 576 [No. 10]) / No. 5 overall (tied)

Abacus Revelation: The Wings rank dead last (.408) in overall FG shooting, but No. 1 (.325) in 3-point usage. Correlation, perhaps?

ABACUS INFOMERCIAL

Scoring Pace (Weeks 5 & 6)

100+ points: 6  [9 overall]
90-99 points: 18  [38 overall]
80-89 points: 15  [44 overall]
70-79 points: 19  [60 overall]
60-69 points: 4  [14 overall]
<60 points: 0  [1 overall]


No. 6 Atlanta Dream, 8-5 (26)
[4-week Abacus rating: 4
2-week Abacus rating: 3
2015 Abacus rating: 8]

KK:  +1; (4 Road Wins – 3 Home Losses) / No. 4 overall) (tied)
Flow:  +2.00; (45.69 stops OF opp [No.2] – 43.69 stops BY opp [No.9] / No.3 overall
Striping:  -1.85; (-2.04) conversions [No. 12] – (-0.19) conversions [No. 3] / No. 12 overall
SPOR-t:  -13; (537 [No. 5] – 550 [No. 5]) / No. 5 overall (tied)

Abacus Revelation: The Dream have attempted 95 more FT’s than their opponents, tops in the “W.”.

No. 7 Washington Mystics, 7-8 (30.5)
[4-week Abacus rating: 8
2-week Abacus rating: 9
2015 Abacus rating: 7]

KK:  -1; (5 Road Wins – 6 Home Losses) / No. 6 overall (tied)
Flow:  -1.47; (41.53 stops OF opp [No.7] – 43.00 stops BY opp [No.8] / No.8 overall
Striping:  -0.07; (+0.50) conversions [No. 6] – (+0.57) opp conversions [No. 8] / No. 7 overall
SPOR-t:  -42; (510 [No. 9] – 552 [No. 8]) / No. 9 overall

Abacus Revelation: During Weeks 5 & 6, the Mystics played “even” by Flow, matching their opponents in stops for the first time this season (44.2 per game).


ABACUS INFOMERCIAL

Scoring Differential (Weeks 5 & 6)

1-5 points: 8  [18 overall]
6-10 points: 12  [35 overall]
11-15 points: 6  [14 overall]
16-20 points: 2  [6 overall]
>20: 3  [10 overall]

No. 8 Seattle Storm, 5-9 (31)
[4-week Abacus rating: 8
2-week Abacus rating: 10
2015 Abacus rating: 11]

KK:  -2; (2 Road Wins – 4 Home Losses) / No. 8 overall (tied)-3
Flow:  -0.86; (40.36 stops OF opp [No.11] – 41.21 stops BY opp [No.4] / No.7 overall
Striping:  +0.64; (+1.32) conversions [No. 1] - (0.68) opp conversions [No. 10] / No. 3 overall
SPOR-t:  -105; (493 [No. 12] – 598 [No. 12]) / No. 12 overall

Abacus Revelation: The Stewie’s Crewie defended the three-ball better than anyone else (.256) during Weeks 5 & 6.
No. 9 Indiana Fever, 5-9 (32)
[4-week Abacus rating: 7
-week Abacus rating: 5
2015 Abacus rating: 4]

KK:  -2; (2 Road Wins – 4 Home Losses) / No. 8 overall (tied)-3
Flow:  -3.64; (40.07 stops OF opp [No.12] – 43.71 stops BY opp [No.10] / No.11 overall
Striping:  +0.46; (+0.39) conversions [No. 7] – (-0.07) conversions [No. 4] / No. 4 overall
SPOR-t:  -40; (507 [No. 10] – 547 [No. 5]) / No. 8 overall

Abacus Revelation: The Fever’s pesky defense is second best (.189) at forcing TO’s.


ABACUS INFOMERCIAL

Masters of the Craft (Part 2)

Are not the exceptionally inept worthy of some recognition? Here are the teams that hold a Bottom Four offensive and defensive ranking in our key elements of play: FG shooting, three-point shooting, PPG, Offensive Rebounding, Turnovers and SPOR-t..

FG%: Dallas, Indiana
3FG%: Connecticut, Indiana, San Antonio
PPG: Connecticut
OR%: Los Angeles, Phoenix, Seattle
TO%: Seattle
SPOR-t: San Antonio, Seattle


No. 10 Phoenix Mercury, 5-9 (35)
[4-week Abacus rating: 11
2-week Abacus rating: 12
2015 Abacus rating: 4]

KK:  -2; (1 Road Win – 3 Home Losses) / No. 8 overall (tied)-3
Flow:  0.00; (41.57 stops OF opp [No.6] – 41.57 stops BY opp [No.5] / No.7 overall
Striping:  -0.36; (+1.00) conversions [No. 3] – (+1.36) opp conversions [No. 12] / No. 9 overall
SPOR-t:  -49; (527 [No. 8] – 576 [No. 10]) / No. 10 overall

Abacus Revelation: For the first time all season, the Merc moved into the top half of the league in rebounding during the past two weeks – at both ends of the floor.

No. 11 San Antonio Stars, 2-11 (36.5)
[4-week Abacus rating: 10
2-week Abacus rating: 10
2015 Abacus rating: 12]

KK:  -5; (0 Road Wins – 5 Home Losses) / No. 11 overall (tied)
Flow:  -2.15; (40.46 stops OF opp [No.10] – 42.62 stops BY opp [No.6] / No.9 overall
Striping:  +0.04; (+0.15) conversions [No. 9] – (-0.12) opp conversions [No. 5] / No. 5 overall
SPOR-t:  -66; (506 [No. 11] – 572 [No. 9]) / No. 11 overall

Abacus Revelation: During Weeks 5 & 6, San Antonio was outplayed by but four total possessions – yet lost five of six games.
No. 12 Connecticut Sun, 3-11 (40.5)
[4-week Abacus rating: 12
2-week Abacus rating: 8
2015 Abacus rating: 9]

KK:  -5; (1 Road Win – 6 Home Losses) / No. 11 overall (tied)
Flow:  -4.86; (41.00 stops OF opp [No.8] – 45.86 stops BY opp [No.12] / No.12 overall
Striping:  -0.64; (-0.32) conversions [No. 10] – (+0.32) conversions [No. 6] / No. 10 overall
SPOR-t:  -20; (529 [No. 7] – 549 [No. 6]) / No. 7 overall

Abacus Revelation: Opponents converted over half their FG attempts (.508, a whopping .415 on three-balls) during Weeks 5 & 6..


The Grading Scale

“Flow”: this calculation puts a number to a team’s unsuccessful possessions (i.e. the other guys’ “stops”). Just take their missed field goals (attempts minus makes), subtract the offensive rebounds, and then add the turnovers. The “scores” represent per-game performance.

“Striping”: this calculation measures the impact of missed free throws and made treys. By subtracting the former from the latter [3’s minus missed FT’s], we identify a team’s gain or loss in points through “specialty shooting.” Again the “scores” are per-game. (A further division by two converts “points” to “conversions” – thus they can be combined with the “Flow” score.)

KK: Karl Kount – named for George Karl – is a way to measure a team’s grit and savvy through its ability to defend its home court and win on the road, a simple calculation for generally reliable info.

“SPOR-t”: SPOR-t stands for “Shooting Plus Offensive Rebounds minus turnovers.” Add a team’s FG percentage and its offensive rebounding percentage (o. boards divided by the sum of those o. boards and the opposition's d. boards). Then subtract the percentage of a team’s possessions lost to turnovers. For example, a team shoots field goals at a .488 clip, offensive rebounds at a rate of .199, and commits a turnover on .143 of its possessions. So its SPOR-t is (488+199-143) or 544. Once again, our measurement will be the difference between the SPOR-t scores of a team and its opposition.