Lux Tax Avoider
This time, the topic is plus-minus.
http://nytimes.com/2005/04/10/sports/basketball/10score.htmlPeople in the game often claim to know instinctively how to measure intangibles, but salaries suggest otherwise. Teams pay for little more than the glory statistics (points, rebounds and, to a lesser extent, assists).
Although steals, blocks, shooting percentage and an ability to avoid turnovers are crucial to a team's performance, players proficient in these aspects are rarely rewarded with bigger paychecks.
Consider our most underrated players, whose adjusted plus-minus statistics most exceed their glory statistics. (The most overrated players are those whose glory statistics most exceed their adjusted plus-minus statistics.)
The underrated list has many role players, as well as Utah's Andrei Kirilenko and San Antonio's Manu Ginóbili, stars who are strong defenders with well-rounded games. The overrated players include three Olympians and several maximum-salary players.
The overrated list is dominated by high-volume shooters who commit lots of turnovers, like Richard Jefferson and Carmelo Anthony. Many are also low-percentage shooters, like Allen Iverson and Antoine Walker.
Scorers like Jermaine O'Neal, Zach Randolph and Michael Redd who generate few assists are less valuable to their teams than is generally understood.
More can be learned by analyzing adjusted plus-minus statistics. With analysis, they can shed light on the age-old question of what kind of player helps a team win.