* Note: For the record, Wegobomber does not recognize any games played by Jordan after the shot over Bryon Russell in the 1998 Finals. Any references to MJ in a Wizards uniform have be wiped from my memory banks.
Thankfully, I have one friend who gets it. My buddy Wego shares my passion for the league and is out there trying to spread the gospel. Like me, he can find a good excuse to watch a random Sixers-Raptors game in mid-November. Like me, he likes to make fun of Portland fans who still defend the Greg Oden draft pick. Like me, he loves a good hypothetical trade scenario.
Over 70% of my outgoing and incoming text messages are either to or from Wego's phone number, and most of those are about the NBA. We have the cell phone bills to prove it. These range from random, late night score updates ("Miami getting waxed at Dallas") and player stat lines ("Griffin 35-14-7") to deep "What if.." or "Who would you take..." questions that can lead to heated debates. Many of these debates lead to further investigation and additional analysis. Normally, we'd reach some conclusion or agree to disagree within a couple days, and that would be that. It wouldn't go beyond our tight circle of two.
At the heart of it, you had two rabid NBA fans discussing topics and debating issues that I know would be of interest to any NBA fan. And that's the crux of this blog. To bring these topics forward, with the hope of sparking discussion with other NBA die-hards. Any maybe get a few converts along the way.
In a prior life, I used to manage multiple fantasy basketball teams with quantitative-based analysis that would make any hedge-fund manager blush (when I say multiple, I mean 52 a year). Like MJ*, I retired while on the top of my game a few years ago. Even after I hung 'em up, I still found myself pouring over box scores and watching games, this time for pure entertainment value instead of as a funding vehicle for my other addiction (check out my other blog in case you don't know what I'm talking about). Although this blog won't focus on fantasy hoops, I hope to bring that same type of insightful analysis to the table here in order to drive some of the key points home.
* Note: see previous note
The Colton Index:
In another previous life, I used to run computer-based rankings on college basketball as part of a crazy obsession to bring down the RPI used by the NCAA selection committee. Of course, that was doomed for failure but out of it sprung the Colton Index, which was highly respected as a ratings tool during its time. I've since used the ratings engine to rank order golf courses (see my GolfBlog100) and am now bringing it over to NBA basketball. Check out the first Colton Index of the NBA season below. I'll be updating these rankings weekly every Monday. And you can view them anytime by selecting the 'Colton Index' tab above.
The Colton Index measures a given team's performance relative to its strength of schedule. I've modified it for the NBA to look at both the entire season-to-date and the performance over the last 15 games. Plus it considers both wins and losses and margin of victory. At its core, all it is doing is comparing one team's resume of wins and losses (with extra weight for performance over the last month or so) versus another (for example, is Dallas's 12-4 record more impressive than the Lakers 13-4 given their different schedules), similar to how you'd do it if you tried to do it manually. It is not a ranking of who the 'best' team is right now or how teams will perform in the future.
Updated with Games as of Sunday November 28
|Rk||Team||W-L||Last 15||Avg Diff||SOS||SOS Rk||Colton|
Must watch games this week:
Mon 11/29: New Orleans at Oklahoma City (8:00 PM ET)
Tues 11/30: Boston at Cleveland (7:00 PM ET) - NBATV Fan Night
Weds 12/1: Orlando at Chicago (8:00 PM ET)
Thurs 12/2: Miami at Cleveland (8:00 PM ET); Phoenix at Golden State (10:30 PM ET) - both on TNT
Fri 12/3: Chicago at Boston (8:00 PM ET); Dallas at Utah (10:30 PM ET) - both on ESPN
Sat 12/4: Atlanta at Miami (7:30 PM ET)
Sun 12/5: New Orleans at San Antonio (7:00 PM ET)
Dunks of the Week:
If you haven't figured it out by now, we like to rank stuff. Here's our Top 5 Dunks from the last week, as voted on by the official Wegobomber Dunk Committee.
5. Marvin Williams looking a little Starks-ish at the Garden.
4. Al Horford with a powerful dunk over Javale McGee.
3. Our man-crush, Kevin Durant throwing it down on the break with his typical grace.
2. Ronnie Price throwing it down over Lamar Odom.
1. Russell Westbrook posterizing Shane Battier.
And simply 'cause we need any excuse to keep watching this...
Next Up on Wegobomber Basketball: Who's to Blame in Miami?