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Come At Me Bro
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http://espn.go.com/nba/story/_/id/8745158/espn-columnist-john-hollinger-join-memphis-grizzlies-front-office

John Hollinger, a fixture of ESPN.com's coverage of the NBA for the past seven seasons and one of the leaders in basketball's rising statistical analysis movement over the past decade, is leaving his role as a columnist to join the front office of the Memphis Grizzlies.

Best known for hatching the formula behind every player's Player Efficiency Ranking (PER) -- which attempts to quantify player performance through the use of an all-in-one rating -- Hollinger will begin work as a senior executive in the Grizzlies' basketball department next week.

"It's incredibly difficult to leave ESPN, but the chance to work for an NBA team and the Grizzlies' new ownership was an irresistible opportunity," Hollinger said Thursday.

Hollinger was recruited to the Grizzlies by new controlling owner Robert Pera and CEO/managing partner Jason Levien, who have made upgrading Memphis' analytics department one of their front-office priorities.

The Grizzlies on Thursday declined comment.
I figured the unusual nature of hiring a journalist statistician deserved a thread. I also know that not everyone buys into PER and advanced metrics. So...thoughts?
 

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I've said this before, but if you ever go into a locker room players can't tell you their PER or TS%. Up until maybe 3 years ago I firmly believed coaches weren't aware of them either. Maybe they've become enlightened and some have bought on them lately, but I have my doubts that people in the trenches really use that stuff. It's mainly for front office types and online geeks.

I personally don't even like basic statistics, so I've never followed this other stuff.
 

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I will truly miss his columns. They were always a must read for me during the season. Good luck, Professor Hollinger.
 

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Wiltside
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This is really interesting. Wonder how it's going to work out. If he's a GM in a decade, I can tell my children of the days when Hollinger was just an ESPN columnist, tweeting out witty observations during Hawks/Blazers games.
 

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you're welcome, I figured it had some application here with the added bonus that Michael "moneyball" Lewis wrote it
 

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Oladipo for the people
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Hollinger is a joke, and so are his ratings.

His team ratings only a week or so back had the Pacers as the 2nd worse team in the league. Its so offensive driven that its not even funny. There's more to the game than that.

And whats he going to do for Memphis?

"Okay Zach, I know you think you're playing well, but you only score 9 Johnny points last game, and Speights had 14 if you look at it as a per48. If this keeps up we're going to have to move you to the bench."


****ing garbage.
 

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Better Call Saul
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I don't know his backstory, but to me he's always been the poster boy for the "I've never actually played sports, but I know more than you" crowd.
 

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For someone who hasn't read much of Hollinger, why were his columns so good?
Because he's one of the only writers out there who consistently uses advanced metrics as a small part of his reasoning to make interesting claims about individual player and team projections. He is often very right or very wrong in his assertions. He has a real opinion that is not fabricated from some other media source, and no matter whether or not his conclusions or valid, his points are interesting to talk about. Essentially, he has discovered the key to sports writing.
 

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I always suspect that the people who are most vociferously against statistics least understand them - they do have utility in argument - for instance if you say so&so is a bad 3pt shooter and I say he's hit 40% of them for his career that's a fairly solid point in my column

can stats be misused or taken out of context? of course but as a piece of the puzzle they are handy indeed

and as a guy who played 3 sports in high school let me just say that being an athlete obviously gives you some insight into the game and the way it is played but that does not mean that an outside observer who has never played cant figure out that an opponent likes to go right x% or that he likes to get to this spot or that spot on the floor where he hits at a significantly higher clip than otherwise

and that is pretty useful information for a defender to know (in a case like this you're basically talking about quantifying what scouts or film will tell you and there may be even more drill down revealed by the stats than thhat obvious stuff)
 

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Oladipo for the people
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I always suspect that the people who are most vociferously against statistics least understand them - they do have utility in argument - for instance if you say so&so is a bad 3pt shooter and I say he's hit 40% of them for his career that's a fairly solid point in my column

can stats be misused or taken out of context? of course but as a piece of the puzzle they are handy indeed

and as a guy who played 3 sports in high school let me just say that being an athlete obviously gives you some insight into the game and the way it is played but that does not mean that an outside observer who has never played cant figure out that an opponent likes to go right x% or that he likes to get to this spot or that spot on the floor where he hits at a significantly higher clip than otherwise

and that is pretty useful information for a defender to know (in a case like this you're basically talking about quantifying what scouts or film will tell you and there may be even more drill down revealed by the stats than thhat obvious stuff)
Jalen Rose was ambidextrous and could use either hand just as well.


Unguardable!
 

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and Isiah Thomas had a long and successful playing career so he'd probably be pretty good as an executive ruining- oops I mean running a franchise
 

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I always suspect that the people who are most vociferously against statistics least understand them - they do have utility in argument - for instance if you say so&so is a bad 3pt shooter and I say he's hit 40% of them for his career that's a fairly solid point in my column

can stats be misused or taken out of context? of course but as a piece of the puzzle they are handy indeed

and as a guy who played 3 sports in high school let me just say that being an athlete obviously gives you some insight into the game and the way it is played but that does not mean that an outside observer who has never played cant figure out that an opponent likes to go right x% or that he likes to get to this spot or that spot on the floor where he hits at a significantly higher clip than otherwise

and that is pretty useful information for a defender to know (in a case like this you're basically talking about quantifying what scouts or film will tell you and there may be even more drill down revealed by the stats than thhat obvious stuff)
I don't know as much about this guy as you, but I believe in your 3rd paragraph what you're describing isn't what Hollinger does. Hollinger likes to invent formulas and %s that all too often people (fans) use to unfairly gauge a players worth.

Maybe per told you tmac was better than Kobe ten years ago. But watching and following the two you knew one had a fanatical drive to win and the other was a whiny pus. It was easy to predict how they're respective careers would pan out.

By the way, what kind of high schools gave you that type of reporting? I couldn't even get that in college!

Sent from my iPhone using Verticalsports.com Free App
 

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Oladipo for the people
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I don't know as much about this guy as you, but I believe in your 3rd paragraph what you're describing isn't what Hollinger does. Hollinger likes to invent formulas and %s that all too often people (fans) use to unfairly gauge a players worth.

Maybe per told you tmac was better than Kobe ten years ago. But watching and following the two you knew one had a fanatical drive to win and the other was a whiny pus. It was easy to predict how they're respective careers would pan out.

By the way, what kind of high schools gave you that type of reporting? I couldn't even get that in college!

Sent from my iPhone using Verticalsports.com Free App
I agree with what you're saying, but I never expected a prime Tmac to flame out as hard as he did.
 
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