Saturday, April 23, 2016

NBA MVP Rankings - 2016

Now that the season is over, I've compiled my list of the top contenders for each of the major NBA regular season awards, with the top 10 MVP candidates, the All-NBA Teams, and the top 5 Sixth Men, Rookies, and Most Improved Players of the season, all based on my statistical formula for player performance.

Most Valuable Player

1. Stephen Curry - GSW - 30.1 P, 5.4 R, 6.7 A, 2.1 S, .504 FG, .454 3P, .908 FT

2. LeBron James - CLE - 25.3 P, 7.4 R, 6.8 A, 1.4 S, .520 FG, .309 3P, .731 FT

3. Russell Westbrook - OKC - 23.5 P, 7.8 R, 10.4 A, 2.0 S, .454 FG, .812 FT

4. James Harden - HOU - 29.0 P, 6.1 R, 7.5 A, 1.7 S, .439 FG, .359 3P, .860 FT

5. Kevin Durant - OKC - 28.2 P, 8.2 R, 5.0 A, 1.2 B, 1.0 S, .505 FG, .386 3P, .898 FT

6. Draymond Green - GSW - 14.0 P, 9.5 R, 7.4 A, 1.4 B, 1.5 S, .490 FG, .388 3P, .696 FT

7. Klay Thompson - GSW - 22.1 P, 3.8 R, 2.1 A, .470 FG, .425 3P, .873 FT

8. DeMar DeRozan - TOR - 23.5 P, 4.5 R, 4.0 A, 1.0 S, .446 FG, .338 3P, .850 FT

9. Kyle Lowry - TOR - 21.2 P, 4.7 R, 6.4 A, 2.1 S, .427 FG, .388 3P, .811 FT

10. Kawhi Leonard - SAS - 21.2 P, 6.8 R, 2.6 A, 1.0 B, 1.8 S, .506 FG, .443 3P, .874 FT

Honora"Paul" Mention: Paul George - IND, Chris Paul - LAC, Paul Millsap - ATL

There is no real race here, since no reigning MVP has ever improved by this much in the following season, and he did it while destroying the record for 3-pointers in a season and leading his team to the best record in history. If Curry had sat out this season, the next 4 in line would all have legitimate claims to the MVP, although Harden would probably be eliminated due to barely making the playoffs, and Durant since he wasn't the best on his team this year.

Rookie of the Year

1. Karl-Anthony Towns - MIN - 18.3 P, 10.5 R, 2.0 A, 1.7 B, .542 FG, .341 3P, .811 FT

2. Kristaps Porzingis - NYK - 14.3 P, 7.3 R, 1.3 A, 1.9 B, .421 FG, .333 3P, .838 FT

3. D'Angelo Russell - LAL - 13.2 P, 3.4 R, 3.3 A, 1.2 S, .410 FG, .351 3P, .737 FT

4. Jahlil Okafor - PHI - 17.5 P, 7.0 R, 1.2 A, 1.2 B, .508 FG, .686 FT

5. Emmanuel Mudiay - DEN - 12.8 P, 3.4 R, 5.5 A, 1.0 S, .364 FG, .319 3P, .670 FT

Honorable Mention: Devin Booker - PHX

Also no real race here. Towns is a legitimate NBA center, and the rest of these guys have the potential to be stars. Okafor was on pace to finish #2 before an injury knocked him out late in the season, and Booker made a late push but didn't do enough in the first half of the season to make the top 5.

Sixth Man of the Year

1. Will Barton - DEN - 14.4 P, 5.8 R, 2.5 A, .432 FG, .345 3P, .806 FT

2. Enes Kanter - OKC - 12.7 P, 8.1 R, 0.4 A, .576 FG, .797 FT

3. Evan Turner - BOS - 10.5 P, 4.9 R, 4.4 A, 1.0 S, .456 FG, .827 FT

4. Ryan Anderson - NOP - 17.0 P, 6.0 R, 1.1 A, .427 FG, .366 3P, .873 FT

5. Darren Collison - SAC - 14.0 P, 2.3 R, 4.3 A, 1.0 S, .486 FG, .401 3P, .858 FT

Honorable Mention: Shabazz Muhammad - MIN, Jamal Crawford - LAC

Jamal Crawford won this award based on name recognition, since he had won the award multiple times before, but he did little more than score, just as he always has. Will Barton had better numbers in every category but free throw percentage, yet was overlooked because he plays in Denver.

Most Improved Player

1. CJ McCollum - POR - 20.8 P, 3.2 R, 4.3 A, 1.2 S, .448 FG, .417 3P, .827 FT
2015: 6.8 P, 1.5 R, 1.0 A, 0.7 S, .436 FG, .396 3P, .699 FT

2. Isaiah Thomas - BOS - 22.2 P, 3.0 R, 6.2 A, 1.1 S, .428 FG, .359 3P, .871 FT
2015: 16.4 P, 2.3 R, 4.2 A, 0.9 S, .421 FG, .373 3P, .868 FT

3. Rodney Hood - UTA - 14.5 P, 3.4 R, 2.7 A, .420 FG, .359 3P, .860 FT
2015: 8.7 P, 2.3 R, 1.7 A, .414 FG, .365 3P, .763 FT

4. Draymond Green - GSW - 14.0 P, 9.5 R, 7.4 A, 1.4 B, 1.5 S, .490 FG, .388 3P, .696 FT
2015: 11.7 P, 8.2 R, 3.7 A, 1.3 B, 1.6 S, .443 FG, .337 3P, .660 FT

5. Stephen Curry - GSW - 30.1 P, 5.4 R, 6.7 A, 2.1 S, .504 FG, .454 3P, .908 FT
2015: 23.8 P, 4.3 R, 7.7 A, 2.0 S, .487 FG, .443 3P, .914 FT

Honorbale Mention: Khris Middleton - MIL, Kemba Walker - CHA

There was a lot of talk saying that Curry should also win the MIP this season, and he obviously made a huge jump this year, but the improvement was almost exclusively in scoring. McCollum tripled his scoring average while also improving markedly in every other major category, so he definitely earned this award.

All-NBA Teams

First Team

F - LeBron James - CLE
F - Kevin Durant - OKC
C - DeMarcus Cousins - SAC
G - Stephen Curry - GSW
G - Russell Westbrook - OKC

Second Team

F - Paul George - IND
F - Draymond Green - GSW
C - Karl-Anthony Towns - MIN
G - James Harden - HOU
G - Kemba Walker - CHA

Third Team

F - Kawhi Leonard - SAS
F - Paul Millsap - ATL
C - Andre Drummond - DET
G - John Wall - WAS
G - Damian Lillard - POR

Friday, April 15, 2016

NBA Playoff Predictions 2016

The NBA Playoffs start tomorrow, and there are only a few teams with a realistic chance of actually winning the title, with the record-setting Warriors and Spurs in the West and juggernaut LeBron in the East looking for his 6th straight Finals appearance. I've gone through every single possible matchup, taking into account home court advantage, possible series length, momentum from the regular season, and overall performance this year to determine each team's odds of advancing through each round and eventually winning the title, along with my own picks for each series. Here are each team's odds:

Odds of Winning First Round

1. Spurs - 98.3%
2. Warriors - 97.5%
3. Thunder - 93.6%
4. Cavaliers - 87.3%
5. Clippers - 75.5%
6. Raptors - 74.0%
7. Hawks - 62.6%
8. Hornets - 55.2%
9. Heat - 44.8%
10. Celtics - 37.4%
11. Pacers - 26.0%
12. Trail Blazers - 24.5%
13. Pistons - 12.7%
14. Mavericks - 6.4%
15. Rockets - 2.5%
16. Grizzlies - 1.7%

Odds of Making Conference Finals

1. Warriors - 89.2%
2. Spurs - 74.5%
3. Cavaliers - 60.4%
4. Raptors - 51.5%
5. Thunder - 25.3%
6. Hawks - 24.9%
7. Hornets - 22.4%
8. Heat - 15.0%
9. Celtics - 11.6%
10. Pacers - 11.1%
11. Clippers - 9.1%
12. Pistons - 3.1%
13. Trail Blazers - 1.0%
14. Rockets - 0.7%
15. Mavericks - 0.2%
16. Grizzlies - 0.1%

Odds of Making NBA Finals

1. Warriors - 52.8%
2. Cavaliers - 42.4%
3. Spurs - 38.0%
4. Raptors - 24.1%
5. Hawks - 13.6%
6. Thunder - 7.7%
7. Hornets - 7.1%
8. Celtics - 5.2%
9. Heat - 4.0%
10. Pacers - 2.7%
11. Clippers - 1.3%
12. Pistons - 0.8%
13. Trail Blazers - 0.1%

Odds of Winning Championship

1. Warriors - 47.0%
2. Spurs - 33.6%
3. Cavaliers - 7.8%
4. Thunder - 5.4%
5. Raptors - 3.0%
6. Hawks - 1.4%
7. Clippers - 0.7%
8. Hornets - 0.5%
9. Celtics - 0.3%
10. Heat - 0.2%
11. Pacers - 0.1%

My Picks

First Round

(1) Cavaliers over (8) Pistons in 5
(2) Raptors over (7) Pacers in 6
(6) Hornets over (3) Heat in 7
(4) Hawks over (5) Celtics in 6
(1) Warriors over (8) Rockets in 4
(2) Spurs over (7) Grizzlies in 4
(3) Thunder over (6) Mavericks in 5
(4) Clippers over (5) Trail Blazers in 6

Second Round

(1) Cavaliers over (4) Hawks in 6
(2) Raptors over (6) Hornets in 6
(1) Warriors over (4) Clippers in 5
(2) Spurs over (3) Thunder in 6

Conference Finals

(1) Cavaliers over (2) Raptors in 6
(1) Warriors over (2) Spurs in 7

NBA Finals

(1) Warriors over (1) Cavaliers in 5

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

NBA Predictions - 13 Apr

Upset picks are in italics.

Miami at Boston - Celtics by 3
Toronto at Brooklyn - Raptors by 9
Orlando at Charlotte - Hornets by 6
Detroit at Cleveland - Cavaliers by 8
Atlanta at Washington - Hawks by 2
Philadelphia at Chicago - Bulls by 10
San Antonio at Dallas - Spurs by 8
Sacramento at Houston - Rockets by 5
Indiana at Milwaukee - Pacers by 3
New Orleans at Minnesota - Timberwolves by 2
Memphis at Golden State - Warriors by 15
Utah at LA Lakers - Jazz by 9
LA Clippers at Phoenix - Clippers by 9
Denver at Portland - Trail Blazers by 6

Prediction Results

NBA: 4-1 (.800) 849-385 overall (.688)

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

NBA Predictions - 12 Apr

Upset picks are in italics.

New York at Indiana - Pacers by 6
Miami at Detroit - Pistons by 1
Philadelphia at Toronto - Raptors by 16
Oklahoma City at San Antonio - Spurs by 5
Memphis at LA Clippers - Clippers by 9

Prediction Results

NBA: 6-3 (.667) 845-384 overall (.688)
Upsets: 1-1 (.500) 83-95 overall (.466)

Monday, April 11, 2016

NBA Predictions - 11 Apr

Upset picks are in italics.

Atlanta at Cleveland - Cavaliers by 4
Milwaukee at Orlando - Magic by 4
Charlotte at Boston - Celtics by 3
Washington at Brooklyn - Wizards by 5
Houston at Minnesota - Rockets by 1
Chicago at New Orleans - Pelicans by 1
LA Lakers at Oklahoma City - Thunder by 18
Dallas at Utah - Jazz by 5
Sacramento at Phoenix - Kings by 2

Prediction Results

NBA: 7-2 (.778) 839-381 overall (.688)

Sunday, April 10, 2016

NBA Predictions - 10 Apr

Upset picks are in italics.

Charlotte at Washington - Hornets by 1
LA Lakers at Houston - Rockets by 11
Dallas at LA Clippers - Clippers by 7
Milwaukee at Philadelphia - Bucks by 4
Utah at Denver - Jazz by 2
Brooklyn at Indiana - Pacers by 11
Orlando at Miami - Heat by 5
Golden State at San Antonio - Spurs by 3
Toronto at New York - Raptors by 5

Prediction Results

NBA: 2-4 (.333) 832-379 overall (.687)
Upsets: 0-1 (.000) 82-94 overall (.466)

Saturday, April 9, 2016

NBA Rankings - 9 Apr

There are only 4 days left in the regular season, and nearly every playoff spot is already locked up, with 13 already claimed and two that are nearly sure things, leaving the final spot in the West as the only one with any real drama. Utah holds a one-game lead over Houston with 3 games left for each team, but the Rockets hold the tiebreaker over the Jazz due to a better conference record. That means that Utah will have to match Houston's record over the final 3 games in order to make the playoffs, and both will be favored in all 3 remaining games. The most losable game for Houston will come at Minnesota on Monday, the only road game remaining on their schedule, and Utah needs to watch out at Denver tomorrow against a Nugget team that just knocked off the Spurs. Utah also must beat Dallas on Monday, but that game will be in Salt Lake City, and the Mavericks will most likely have clinched before then. The spot cannot be decided until Monday, and most likely will go clear until closing night, when Houston hosts Sacramento, then Utah plays the Lakers in a late game in Los Angeles. It will be weird to see the Kings and Lakers have a say in the playoff race, but it should be an exciting few days for two teams fighting to lose to Golden State in the first round. Here are my full current rankings:





Rec
Proj

TW
LW
Team
Rating
W
L
W
L
PO Seed
1
1
San Antonio
-9.88
65
14
67
15
W2
2
2
Golden State
-9.718
70
9
72
10
W1
3
3
Oklahoma City
-6.69
54
25
56
26
W3
4
4
Cleveland
-5.271
56
23
58
24
E1
5
7
LA Clippers
-3.982
51
28
53
29
W4
6
6
Toronto
-3.85
53
26
55
27
E2
7
5
Atlanta
-3.736
47
32
49
33
E3
8
8
Boston
-2.531
47
32
49
33
E4
9
9
Charlotte
-2.015
46
33
48
34
E5
10
12
Utah
-1.866
39
40
41
41
W8
11
13
Portland
-1.015
43
37
44
38
W5
12
11
Miami
-0.909
46
33
47
35
E6
13
10
Indiana
-0.775
42
37
44
38
E7
14
14
Detroit
0.1246
43
37
44
38
E8
15
15
Houston
0.3537
38
41
40
42

16
16
Dallas
0.5035
41
38
42
40
W6
17
17
Washington
1.0114
38
41
40
42

18
24
Orlando
1.8964
34
45
35
47

19
18
Chicago
2.3175
39
40
41
41

20
19
Memphis
2.4234
42
37
42
40
W7
21
21
Sacramento
2.6545
31
48
32
50

22
20
Denver
2.8159
33
47
34
48

23
23
New Orleans
3.0462
30
49
32
50

24
22
New York
3.1501
32
48
33
49

25
26
Minnesota
3.922
27
52
28
54

26
25
Milwaukee
4.0903
32
47
33
49

27
27
Brooklyn
7.4853
21
58
22
60

28
28
Phoenix
7.6159
21
58
22
60

29
29
LA Lakers
9.0082
16
63
16
66

30
30
Philadelphia
10.102
10
69
11
71


Playoff Picks

First Round

(1) Cavaliers over (8) Pistons
(2) Raptors over (7) Pacers
(3) Hawks over (6) Heat
(5) Hornets over (4) Celtics
(1) Warriors over (8) Jazz
(2) Spurs over (7) Grizzlies
(3) Thunder over (6) Mavericks
(4) Clippers over (5) Trail Blazers

Second Round

(1) Cavaliers over (5) Hornets
(3) Hawks over (2) Raptors
(1) Warriors over (4) Clippers
(2) Spurs over (3) Thunder

Conference Finals

(3) Hawks over (1) Cavaliers
(2) Spurs over (1) Warriors

NBA Finals

(2) Spurs over (3) Hawks