Visualizing Player Shot Selection and Efficiency

By Stephen Shea (@SteveShea33)

February 16, 2017

Good teams need high-volume scorers—players that can put up more than 20 points a night.  Of course, players can arrive at their points in a variety of ways.  For example, Giannis Antetokounmpo relies heavily on his ability to get to the hoop, while Steph Curry will happily launch from deep.

To get a sense the shot selection and efficiency of the NBA’s top scorers, we created the following visualization for players that have taken at least 600 FGA.  The player’s location on the image is determined by their shot selection.  Note that players near the origin (the bottom left) are the most reliant on mid-range jumpers.

Each player’s efficiency as measured by True Shooting % (TS%) is reflected in the color of their dot.  The image demonstrates that players that rely heavily on mid-range jumpers struggle to be efficient.  DeRozan, Carmelo, Barnes, Vucevic, Aldridge, and Wade are in this category.

IMAGE_SS2

The following table contains the relevant stats for all of the players in the image.

PlayerTEAM%FGA at Hoop% FGA from 3%FGA from (other) 2sTotalFGATS%
Kevin DurantGSW0.280.300.4294865.2
Isaiah ThomasBOS0.360.420.22103562.8
Stephen CurryGSW0.230.540.2295862.8
Kyle LowryTOR0.240.510.2586962.4
Kawhi LeonardSAS0.190.290.5290061.8
LeBron JamesCLE0.430.250.3293361.6
James HardenHOU0.260.480.27109461.5
Lou WilliamsLAL0.230.430.3473260.9
Giannis AntetokounmpoMIL0.520.160.3286660.5
Gordon HaywardUTA0.250.330.4277860.2
Myles TurnerIND0.330.150.5261159.9
Bradley BealWAS0.260.430.3083359.8
Klay ThompsonGSW0.170.460.3793359.7
Karl-Anthony TownsMIN0.420.190.39100159.4
CJ McCollumPOR0.190.330.48101259.1
Jimmy ButlerCHI0.290.200.5182058.8
JJ RedickLAC0.100.520.3862258.7
Goran DragicMIA0.300.250.4574358.4
Mike ConleyMEM0.230.400.3865558.4
Kevin LoveCLE0.220.460.3268158.2
Anthony DavisNOP0.300.080.62106857.9
Brook LopezBKN0.280.330.4080057.9
Zach LaVineMIN0.290.440.2771057.6
Jeff TeagueIND0.340.250.4162357.6
Tobias HarrisDET0.220.290.4974157.4
Paul GeorgeIND0.160.340.5085057.2
Hassan WhitesideMIA0.500.000.5066057.2
Bojan BogdanovicBKN0.350.450.1961157.2
Damian LillardPOR0.290.380.3398657.1
Eric BledsoePHX0.320.290.3888556.9
Eric GordonHOU0.210.650.1473456.9
Serge IbakaTOR0.180.300.5170356.9
Kyrie IrvingCLE0.290.310.3995956.8
Kemba WalkerCHA0.350.380.2797556.7
Marc GasolMEM0.150.220.6288456.4
Jabari ParkerMIL0.450.210.3381056.3
DeMarcus CousinsSAC0.400.240.36111556.2
Kristaps PorzingisNYK0.230.330.4473255.1
Ersan IlyasovaPHI0.280.470.2666455.1
Wesley MatthewsDAL0.140.560.3067754.8
DeMar DeRozanTOR0.180.070.76105754.7
Carmelo AnthonyNYK0.150.290.56106554.6
Russell WestbrookOKC0.320.270.42136154.5
Evan FournierORL0.320.350.3361054.5
Andrew WigginsMIN0.300.190.51105654.4
John WallWAS0.370.190.4495154.1
Dennis SchroderATL0.410.240.3581954.1
LaMarcus AldridgeSAS0.240.050.7072754.1
Harrison BarnesDAL0.180.170.6495754
Nicolas BatumCHA0.130.400.4764753.8
Paul MillsapATL0.280.260.4675753.7
Victor OladipoOKC0.290.390.3267153.7
Markieff MorrisWAS0.290.220.4863853.7
Wilson ChandlerDEN0.300.320.3866953.5
Devin BookerPHX0.240.290.4899253
Kentavious Caldwell-PopeDET0.170.450.3863553
Jordan ClarksonLAL0.280.310.4269952.8
Andre DrummondDET0.540.000.4567052.5
Derrick RoseNYK0.440.070.4974151.8
Marcus MorrisDET0.120.360.5170751.6
Dwyane WadeCHI0.280.150.5779451
Jamal CrawfordLAC0.130.360.5161950.9
Elfrid PaytonORL0.440.190.3765250.6
Nikola VucevicORL0.240.070.6872049.9
Zach RandolphMEM0.340.090.5665249.7

Individual Defensive Ratings; Draymond, Embiid and Giannis On Top

By Stephen Shea, (@SteveShea33)

February 6, 2017

Historically, it has been far more difficult to quantify defensive performance than offensive production.  However, with recent improvements in data gathering, most notably the NBA’s adoption of SportVU’s spatial-tracking system, there is hope that analytics can begin to tackle this problem.

In a previous post, we presented Perimeter Defense Ratings (PDR).  Here, we present a slightly revised PDR (updated through the February 5th games).  We also introduce an Interior Defense Rating (IDR) and sum IDR and PDR for Total Defense Ratings (TDR).

Methodology

For our calculations, we used steals, blocks, deflections, loose-balls gathered, defensive rebounds, opponents’ FG% on shots within 6 feet, individual defensive ratings (as calculated by NBA.com), pace, minutes played, opponents’ FGA within 6 feet, and 3-point shots contested.

Pace and minutes played were used to convert stat totals to per possession rates.  Opponents’ FGA within 6 feet and 3-point shots contested are used to approximate how often a player is in a position to influence perimeter shots and interior shots.  Steals, blocks, deflections, loose-balls gathered, defensive rebounds, and opponents’ FG% on shots within 6 feet are converted to standard deviations from the mean where the means and standard deviations are calculated on pace-adjusted numbers for NBA players with at least 600 minutes played.

Defensive rating is adjusted first for how well the player rated according to other stats.  A player that rated well on the individual metrics would see a bigger boost from a good DRtg than one that did not rate well on the other individual defensive stats.

Interpretation

Players were assessed based on their performance this season in the tasks asked of them.  For example, DeMarcus Cousins’ perimeter rating is based on his performance guarding the perimeter this season.  That often meant time guarding opposing bigs on the perimeter with the occasional switch onto a smaller player after a screen.  Cousins performed reasonably well in those areas registering a decent PDR.  This does not mean that Cousins should be asked to guard Steph Curry for 36 minutes.  (If he were asked to guard the opposing PG every night, he would probably have a terrible PDR.)

TDR simply sums PDR and IDR, which gives each stat in the sum equal weight.  This gives a good sense of the positional versatility of the defender.  However, there are players whose responsibilities lie almost exclusively on the perimeter or almost exclusively on the interior.  This can lead to some confusion in interpreting TDR.

For example, Greg Monroe scored a 3.1 in TDR by getting a 1.1 in PDR and a 2.0 in IDR.  The 1.1 in PDR reflects that Monroe is one of the more mobile big men on the perimeter.  The IDR of 2.0 suggests he has the size to be functional defensively at center but is by no means elite as a rim protector.  By comparison, DeAndre Jordan scored a 6.2 in IDR and a -3.8 in PDR for a TDR of 2.5.  Although Monroe outscored Jordan in TDR, it does not mean Monroe is a better defensive center than Jordan. Since teams rely heavily on their center to protect the rim, IDR alone is a better judge of a center’s defensive ability.

Where’s LeBron?  LeBron rates as a slight positive in both interior and perimeter defense.  However, his TDR rating of 1.2 does not accurately reflect how great of a defender LeBron can be.  His TDR reflects his contributions through the first half of this season, and it would be foolish for LeBron to be taking charges and diving for loose balls every possession for 37 minutes a night in November.  He’s a different defender when the games matter.  We suspect his playoff TDR would be much better than his regular season TDR.

Ratings

The following sortable table displays the defensive ratings for all players that have played at least 750 minutes this season.  There are 244 players in total.

PLAYERTEAMAGEMINPDRIDRTDR
Draymond GreenGSW2616006.43.810.3
Joel EmbiidPHI227860.39.19.3
Giannis AntetokounmpoMIL2217255.34.09.2
Anthony DavisNOP2317001.96.07.9
Tony AllenMEM3512688.1-0.57.7
Rudy GobertUTA241720-1.68.56.9
Lucas NogueiraTOR249170.95.86.7
Robert CovingtonPHI2613615.01.46.4
DeMarcus CousinsSAC2617271.93.85.7
Kawhi LeonardSAS2515384.21.45.7
Kevin DurantGSW2817571.73.95.6
Thabo SefoloshaATL3211376.2-1.05.2
James JohnsonMIA2911923.11.95.0
Rondae Hollis-JeffersonBKN2210134.40.54.9
Hassan WhitesideMIA271516-2.37.14.8
Rudy GaySAC3010133.71.04.7
Paul MillsapATL3116282.62.14.7
Andre DrummondDET2315340.04.64.6
Derrick FavorsUTA257800.83.84.6
Kris DunnMIN228324.7-0.24.6
Thaddeus YoungIND2815244.6-0.44.2
Manu GinobiliSAS398083.50.74.2
Nikola MiroticCHI2510151.92.24.1
Kristaps PorzingisNYK211457-0.34.34.0
Dwight HowardATL311359-1.65.53.9
Chris PaulLAC3111125.7-1.93.8
Trevor BookerBKN2912082.21.43.6
Myles TurnerIND201490-2.05.33.3
Greg MonroeMIL2610451.12.03.1
Jrue HolidayNOP2611433.9-0.93.0
Rajon RondoCHI3011273.0-0.13.0
Al-Farouq AminuPOR269770.42.52.8
Pascal SiakamTOR227661.91.02.8
John HensonMIL26888-1.34.02.7
Stephen CurryGSW2816843.4-0.82.7
Mason PlumleePOR261459-0.73.42.7
Cody ZellerCHA241023-0.22.92.7
John WallWAS2617452.40.32.7
Tyler JohnsonMIA2413252.30.32.6
Patrick BeverleyHOU2812443.6-1.02.6
Nikola VucevicORL261420-0.53.12.6
Paul GeorgeIND2615313.0-0.52.6
Steven AdamsOKC2315340.61.92.5
Otto PorterWAS2316842.40.12.5
Justin HolidayNYK2710262.6-0.12.5
DeAndre JordanLAC281607-3.86.22.5
NeneHOU347710.91.62.5
Al HorfordBOS3012930.12.32.4
Danny GreenSAS2911082.4-0.12.3
Zaza PachuliaGSW328260.22.22.3
Marcus SmartBOS2214733.4-1.22.3
Gorgui DiengMIN2716340.22.12.3
Joe InglesUTA2910823.8-1.62.2
Stanley JohnsonDET207750.91.32.2
Tristan ThompsonCLE251434-1.93.92.0
Michael Kidd-GilchristCHA2314731.10.91.9
Clint CapelaHOU22912-2.64.51.9
Terrence JonesNOP251205-0.72.61.8
David LeeSAS33911-0.72.61.8
Russell WestbrookOKC2818030.41.31.7
Jonathon SimmonsSAS278581.9-0.21.7
Luc Mbah a MouteLAC3011022.3-0.71.6
Andre RobersonOKC2515840.71.01.6
Elfrid PaytonORL2215562.5-0.91.6
Kenneth FariedDEN271039-0.41.91.5
Nemanja BjelicaMIN288431.10.41.5
Marc GasolMEM321714-1.32.71.4
Maurice HarklessPOR2314020.80.61.4
Kevin LoveCLE281326-1.22.51.3
LeBron JamesCLE3217260.50.71.2
Jusuf NurkicDEN22791-1.12.31.2
Kelly OlynykBOS259250.40.71.2
Bismack BiyomboORL241240-3.04.11.1
Taj GibsonCHI311352-1.52.61.1
DeMarre CarrollTOR3012462.0-0.91.0
Markieff MorrisWAS271574-0.11.11.0
Corey BrewerHOU308331.8-0.81.0
Andrew HarrisonMEM2211553.1-2.20.9
Mike ConleyMEM2913334.4-3.50.9
Zach RandolphMEM351123-0.91.80.9
Karl-Anthony TownsMIN211856-2.63.50.9
Alex LenPHX23962-4.04.80.9
James Ennis IIIMEM2610041.3-0.40.9
Dwyane WadeCHI3513992.3-1.40.9
Amir JohnsonBOS29996-1.22.00.8
Raymond FeltonLAC3211002.6-1.80.7
Victor OladipoOKC2414541.5-0.80.7
Kosta KoufosSAC27972-1.72.40.7
Josh RichardsonMIA238750.60.00.6
Avery BradleyBOS2612570.8-0.10.6
Kent BazemoreATL2713451.3-0.80.5
LaMarcus AldridgeSAS311446-2.73.20.5
TJ McConnellPHI2411874.1-3.70.4
Domantas SabonisOKC201131-1.01.40.4
Andre IguodalaGSW3312620.7-0.30.4
Brook LopezBKN281351-2.32.60.4
Kyle LowryTOR3019221.6-1.30.4
Jimmy ButlerCHI2717591.2-0.90.3
Joakim NoahNYK311015-2.22.50.3
Garrett TempleSAC3013012.0-1.70.2
Dwight PowellDAL259460.6-0.40.2
Kelly Oubre Jr.WAS219862.3-2.10.2
Ish SmithDET2811900.3-0.20.1
Nikola JokicDEN211116-1.21.20.0
Trevor ArizaHOU3118650.9-0.90.0
Blake GriffinLAC2710280.00.00.0
Ty LawsonSAC2912052.4-2.5-0.1
Terrence RossTOR2611551.4-1.5-0.1
PJ TuckerPHX3114571.4-1.6-0.2
Jonas ValanciunasTOR241347-3.53.3-0.2
Solomon HillNOP2513690.3-0.6-0.3
Ricky RubioMIN2614353.1-3.4-0.3
JaMychal GreenMEM261481-1.20.9-0.3
Jae CrowderBOS2613980.9-1.2-0.3
Montrezl HarrellHOU23835-0.70.3-0.3
Terry RozierBOS228200.8-1.2-0.4
James HardenHOU2719770.4-0.8-0.4
Trey LylesUTA21974-2.01.4-0.6
Vince CarterMEM401115-0.5-0.1-0.6
Jabari ParkerMIL2117080.4-1.1-0.7
Pau GasolSAS361029-5.14.4-0.7
Dion WaitersMIA25945-0.6-0.1-0.7
Serge IbakaORL271581-3.32.4-0.8
Jeff TeagueIND2816322.2-3.0-0.8
Julius RandleLAL221290-1.30.5-0.8
Kemba WalkerCHA2616910.3-1.1-0.9
Lou WilliamsLAL3012880.5-1.4-0.9
Isaiah WhiteheadBKN21951-0.4-0.5-0.9
Jerami GrantOKC221073-2.31.3-1.0
Norman PowellTOR238461.7-2.7-1.0
Patrick PattersonTOR271090-1.90.9-1.0
Eric BledsoePHX2717050.7-1.8-1.1
Sam DekkerHOU221056-0.9-0.2-1.1
Seth CurryDAL2612732.5-3.6-1.1
Iman ShumpertCLE2612220.7-1.8-1.1
Shaun LivingstonGSW318251.0-2.1-1.2
Nicolas BatumCHA281656-1.80.6-1.2
Justin HamiltonBKN26871-2.71.5-1.2
Marquese ChrissPHX199350.2-1.5-1.3
Jonas JerebkoBOS29859-1.40.2-1.3
Dorian Finney-SmithDAL231065-0.2-1.2-1.3
Gordon HaywardUTA261532-0.9-0.6-1.5
Jahlil OkaforPHI21784-3.41.9-1.5
Marcin GortatWAS321725-3.52.0-1.5
CJ McCollumPOR251792-0.2-1.4-1.5
Tim FrazierNOP26963-0.1-1.6-1.7
Mike MuscalaATL25909-2.60.9-1.7
Tyson ChandlerPHX341194-4.32.5-1.8
Ersan IlyasovaPHI291378-2.50.7-1.8
Marvin WilliamsCHA301249-2.30.4-1.8
Malcolm BrogdonMIL2412730.6-2.5-1.9
Malcolm DelaneyATL279040.1-1.9-1.9
Jaylen BrownBOS20750-1.3-0.6-1.9
Dario SaricPHI221202-2.30.4-1.9
Enes KanterOKC241015-3.71.7-2.0
DeMar DeRozanTOR271593-0.9-1.2-2.1
Monta EllisIND3111330.9-3.1-2.2
Dennis SchroderATL231560-0.5-1.7-2.2
CJ MilesIND291001-1.3-0.9-2.2
Langston GallowayNOP2510170.9-3.1-2.2
D'Angelo RussellLAL209910.9-3.1-2.2
Jordan ClarksonLAL2414571.7-3.9-2.2
Robin LopezCHI281438-5.43.2-2.2
Wesley MatthewsDAL3016620.7-3.0-2.3
Kyrie IrvingCLE241505-0.1-2.2-2.3
Evan TurnerPOR281288-0.3-2.1-2.3
Marreese SpeightsLAC29852-4.31.6-2.7
E'Twaun MooreNOP271168-1.0-1.7-2.7
Klay ThompsonGSW261712-1.9-0.9-2.8
Glenn RobinsonIND231067-2.6-0.3-2.9
Derrick RoseNYK281379-1.5-1.4-2.9
Shelvin MackUTA269460.2-3.1-2.9
Rodney McGruderMIA2512050.3-3.3-2.9
Aaron GordonORL211467-2.6-0.4-3.1
Ramon SessionsCHA30811-0.8-2.3-3.1
Patty MillsSAS281065-0.1-3.1-3.2
Luol DengLAL311337-2.2-1.1-3.3
Frank KaminskyCHA231187-1.9-1.4-3.3
Wilson ChandlerDEN291397-3.0-0.4-3.3
George HillUTA30858-0.9-2.4-3.3
Tim Hardaway Jr.ATL241180-1.9-1.5-3.5
Carmelo AnthonyNYK321718-2.9-0.6-3.5
Channing FryeCLE33777-4.50.9-3.5
Gerald HendersonPHI291082-1.6-2.0-3.5
Goran DragicMIA301471-2.0-1.6-3.6
Jon LeuerDET271200-3.60.0-3.6
Kentavious Caldwell-PopeDET2315560.1-3.8-3.6
Marcus MorrisDET271646-2.7-1.0-3.7
TJ WarrenPHX231115-1.2-2.6-3.8
Tobias HarrisDET241644-3.0-0.9-3.8
Jamal MurrayDEN19996-1.6-2.3-3.9
Brandon JenningsNYK2713000.0-3.9-3.9
Bradley BealWAS231577-0.2-3.7-4.0
Cory JosephTOR251128-0.4-3.6-4.0
Sergio RodriguezPHI301057-0.7-3.3-4.0
Harrison BarnesDAL241789-1.7-2.3-4.0
Will BartonDEN261011-2.8-1.2-4.0
Dante CunninghamNOP29936-2.6-1.5-4.1
Darren CollisonSAC291290-0.7-3.4-4.2
Jason TerryMIL39756-0.2-4.2-4.4
Evan FournierORL241309-1.1-3.4-4.5
Matt BarnesSAC361186-2.1-2.4-4.5
Kyle KorverCLE351216-3.5-1.1-4.6
Rodney HoodUTA241145-2.9-1.7-4.7
Joe JohnsonUTA351119-4.0-0.7-4.8
Jamal CrawfordLAC361372-2.7-2.3-4.9
Jameer NelsonDEN341269-2.5-2.6-5.1
Devin BookerPHX201739-2.1-3.0-5.1
Timofey MozgovLAL301078-5.50.4-5.1
Damian LillardPOR261677-3.4-1.8-5.2
Buddy HieldNOP231037-2.9-2.3-5.2
Joe HarrisBKN25960-3.0-2.4-5.4
Sean KilpatrickBKN271333-3.2-2.3-5.5
Shabazz MuhammadMIN24921-4.0-1.5-5.5
Eric GordonHOU281524-3.1-2.6-5.6
Matthew DellavedovaMIL261200-2.4-3.2-5.6
Allen CrabbePOR241486-3.8-1.8-5.7
Richard JeffersonCLE36956-3.8-1.9-5.7
Courtney LeeNYK311468-1.3-4.5-5.8
Tony SnellMIL251401-3.3-2.5-5.8
Jeff GreenORL301213-3.4-2.5-5.9
Brandon IngramLAL191468-3.3-2.6-5.9
Austin RiversLAC241356-2.7-3.2-5.9
Danilo GallinariDEN281504-3.9-2.0-5.9
Boris DiawUTA34778-4.0-2.2-6.1
Wayne EllingtonMIA29830-1.6-4.6-6.2
Ryan AndersonHOU281569-4.9-1.5-6.4
Andrew WigginsMIN211896-3.2-3.5-6.6
JJ RedickLAC321363-2.7-4.0-6.7
Anthony TolliverSAC31877-4.3-2.5-6.8
Nik StauskasPHI231289-3.6-3.2-6.8
Nick YoungLAL311228-3.6-3.3-6.9
Doug McDermottCHI25940-5.9-1.0-6.9
Deron WilliamsDAL321112-3.7-3.3-7.0
Tony ParkerSAS34946-3.8-3.5-7.3
Isaiah ThomasBOS271621-2.6-4.7-7.3
Emmanuel MudiayDEN201237-3.8-3.6-7.4
Reggie JacksonDET26867-2.2-5.5-7.7
Bojan BogdanovicBKN271333-4.7-3.0-7.7
Zach LaVineMIN211749-2.9-5.0-7.9
Brandon KnightPHX251015-3.1-5.1-8.2
Marco BelinelliCHA301134-3.6-4.8-8.4
D.J. AugustinORL291069-3.1-6.5-9.6
Arron AfflaloSAC311088-6.8-4.7-11.5

Team Perimeter Defense; Memphis and Golden State On Top

By Stephen Shea (@SteveShea33)

February 2, 2017

We recently released a metric for individual perimeter defense (or at least our first attempt at one with modern data).  The purpose of this post is to examine how this metric, Perimeter Defense Rating (PDR), behaves at the team level.

We ran the formula for each team as if the team were a player.  Memphis rated the highest, with Golden State, Toronto and Milwaukee not far behind.  Detroit, Orlando and Denver took the bottom three spots.

Of course, the perimeter is only one component of team defense.  We wanted to see how team PDR worked in conjunction with interior defense.  We considered a team a “+” perimeter defensive team if their team PDR was not negative.  13 of the 30 teams qualified.  We considered a team a “+” interior defensive team if they held opponents to less than 60% shooting at the rim.  11 of the 30 teams qualified.  Portland and Utah held opponents to the lowest FG% at the rim (just under 56%).

Interestingly, among the top 8 teams in opponents’ FG% at the rim, 7 were a negative in team PDR.  This strongly suggests that it’s hard to play great defense at both the rim and the perimeter. Intuitively, that makes sense.  If you press up on the perimeter to try and get turnovers or to prevent quality 3-point attempts, you are leaving space in the middle of the court and are vulnerable to drives and cuts to the paint.

In total, 4 teams qualified as both a + perimeter and a + interior defensive team.  Those were Golden State, San Antonio, Memphis and Atlanta.  All 4 are in the top 5 in defensive rating.

The following chart shows the average DRtg among teams categorized by whether or not they met the + defensive qualifications.

teamPDRchart

It’s no surprise that teams that can be plus defenders on both the interior and perimeter have the best overall defense.  Preliminary findings suggest that excelling in both is an exceptionally challenging task.

Rating Perimeter Defenders; Tony Allen Still King

By Steve Shea (@SteveShea33)

February 1, 2017

It has always been more difficult to quantify a player’s defense than his offense.  Box scores offer little beyond blocks and steals.  While many players play 60-70 defensive possessions a game, most only accumulate 1 or 2 steals or blocks.  What is happening in the other approximately 95% of possessions?

Each season, NBA offenses are becoming more perimeter-oriented.  Unquestionably, the 3-point shot is a huge component of today’s game.  In this modern landscape, it is all the more important that analytics be able to assess perimeter defense.

But how?  There are two approaches one can take.  One approach is a top-down metric.  Top-down metrics quantify individual performance by looking only at full lineup production, such as plus-minus or adjusted plus-minus. The motivation for using a top-down approach for defense is that defense is a team endeavor.  Four players can be playing great d, but if one player gets caught ball-watching and loses his man on a backdoor cut, it can lead to an easy layup.

Unfortunately, even when trying to adjust for quality of teammates, top-down metrics for the individual can be heavily pulled by who the player plays with.  The perimeter defender that has the benefit of help defense from a great rim protector tends to look better.

Alternatively, one could use a bottom-up approach, which is to use statistics based on individual actions.  In this case, that would be steals, fouls or something of that sort.  Historically, there have been very few such bottom-up stats that pertain to perimeter d, leaving a purely bottom-up approach impossible.

Fortunately, with recent improvements in data gathering (including spatial-tracking data gathering), a bottom-up approach becomes more feasible, and this is the approach we’ll take here.  No, we will not use defended FG% as presented by NBA.com.  This metric looks at opponents’ FG% when each defender is the closest.  Krishna Narsu recently explained why this is troublesome, especially on 3-point shots.

Instead, we’re going to use new metrics from NBA.com that get at some of the nuanced actions on defense, including deflections.

In this new metric, called Perimeter Defense Rating (PDR), we’re approximating a player’s production as a perimeter defender.  When measuring production, it’s always important to consider context.  This metric cannot account for important components of a player’s context on defense.  Perhaps the most important factor is the defensive scheme.  Certain schemes put players in better positions to succeed.

PDR should not be viewed as purely a measure of a player’s intrinsic skill set as a defender.  It is largely influenced by a player’s skill set, but there are also extrinsic variables.  It is possible that a player’s PDR is enhanced or diminished by the system he plays in.

Below are Perimeter Defense Ratings (PDR) for NBA players as of January 31, 2017.  We only included players that played at least 800 minutes and excluded players that are typically classified as centers.

RankPLAYERTEAMAGEMINPDR
1Tony AllenMEM3512088.91
2Chris PaulLAC3111126.82
3Draymond GreenGSW2615276.44
4Thabo SefoloshaATL3211376.39
5Rondae Hollis-JeffersonBKN229435.97
6Mike ConleyMEM2912355.93
7TJ McConnellPHI2410985.81
8Thaddeus YoungIND2814735.73
9Kris DunnMIN228215.44
10Robert CovingtonPHI2613615.28
11Ricky RubioMIN2613255.26
12Patrick BeverleyHOU2811495.10
13Kelly Oubre Jr.WAS219115.05
14Joe InglesUTA2910294.93
15Paul GeorgeIND2614294.84
16Jrue HolidayNOP2610314.75
17Kawhi LeonardSAS2514464.71
18Giannis AntetokounmpoMIL2216174.71
19Garrett TempleSAC3012834.64
20John WallWAS2616334.36
21Marcus SmartBOS2213774.31
22Rudy GaySAC3010134.18
23Stephen CurryGSW2815754.10
24Andrew HarrisonMEM2211013.91
25Rajon RondoCHI3010903.89
26Justin HolidayNYK279563.71
27DeMarre CarrollTOR3011213.70
28Paul MillsapATL3115463.68
29Trevor BookerBKN2911453.62
30Elfrid PaytonORL2214673.47
31Raymond FeltonLAC3210123.25
32Jabari ParkerMIL2116103.16
33Dwight PowellDAL259283.16
34Jordan ClarksonLAL2413853.15
35Kyle LowryTOR3017573.15
36Seth CurryDAL2612103.09
37Dwyane WadeCHI3513393.03
38Wesley MatthewsDAL3015912.97
39PJ TuckerPHX3113542.97
40Ty LawsonSAC2911452.94
41Tyler JohnsonMIA2412582.87
42Otto PorterWAS2315832.81
43Michael Kidd-GilchristCHA2313972.80
44Jeff TeagueIND2815332.67
45Cory JosephTOR2510742.66
46Luc Mbah a MouteLAC3010702.62
47Terrence RossTOR2510562.57
48James JohnsonMIA2911532.55
49Eric BledsoePHX2715962.36
50Bradley BealWAS2314742.34
51Avery BradleyBOS2612572.32
52Shelvin MackUTA269462.28
53Victor OladipoOKC2413252.23
54Langston GallowayNOP259882.21
55Jimmy ButlerCHI2717292.21
56Kelly OlynykBOS258872.16
57James Ennis IIIMEM269262.03
58Danny GreenSAS2910351.99
59Jae CrowderBOS2612961.98
60Iman ShumpertCLE2611591.95
61Trevor ArizaHOU3117621.94
62Lou WilliamsLAL3012181.63
63Tim FrazierNOP269511.63
64Monta EllisIND3110631.61
65Kemba WalkerCHA2615991.59
66D'Angelo RussellLAL208941.59
67Nikola MiroticCHI259791.57
68Solomon HillNOP2512851.51
69Dorian Finney-SmithDAL2310141.43
70Anthony DavisNOP2315791.34
71James HardenHOU2718631.33
72Malcolm BrogdonMIL2411931.31
73Al-Farouq AminuPOR268801.26
74Evan TurnerPOR2812091.20
75Kent BazemoreATL2712641.16
76Rodney McGruderMIA2511601.15
77Maurice HarklessPOR2313311.14
78Marquese ChrissPHX198671.08
79Patty MillsSAS2810160.99
80LeBron JamesCLE3216520.94
81CJ McCollumPOR2516980.89
82Shaun LivingstonGSW318080.79
83Russell WestbrookOKC2816670.78
84Matt BarnesSAC3610840.74
85Sam DekkerHOU2210090.73
86Josh RichardsonMIA238750.70
87Andre IguodalaGSW3311730.65
88Andre RobersonOKC2514750.60
89Ish SmithDET2811210.58
90Kentavious Caldwell-PopeDET2314490.58
91Malcolm DelaneyATL278460.51
92Brandon JenningsNYK2711780.47
93Darren CollisonSAC2911930.47
94Julius RandleLAL2212850.43
95Kevin DurantGSW2816450.40
96Markieff MorrisWAS2714670.37
97Zach RandolphMEM3510410.30
98Dennis SchroderATL2314870.29
99Vince CarterMEM4010390.24
100Kyrie IrvingCLE2414740.21
101TJ WarrenPHX2310140.17
102Isaiah WhiteheadBKN218990.13
103Kenneth FariedDEN279430.03
104Matthew DellavedovaMIL2611200.02
105JaMychal GreenMEM2614000.02
106Courtney LeeNYK311382-0.02
107Blake GriffinLAC27927-0.12
108Kristaps PorzingisNYK211402-0.21
109Domantas SabonisOKC201029-0.26
110Kevin LoveCLE281290-0.28
111DeMar DeRozanTOR271593-0.28
112Tim Hardaway Jr.ATL241093-0.28
113Gerald HendersonPHI291033-0.38
114Evan FournierORL241212-0.56
115Dion WaitersMIA25889-0.57
116Nicolas BatumCHA281564-0.57
117Derrick RoseNYK281379-0.64
118David LeeSAS33848-0.64
119CJ MilesIND29923-0.68
120Patrick PattersonTOR271028-0.71
121Jonas JerebkoBOS29808-0.72
122Luol DengLAL311254-0.80
123Andrew WigginsMIN211782-0.84
124Sergio RodriguezPHI301014-0.97
125Terrence JonesNOP251114-1.07
126Brandon KnightPHX25981-1.10
127E'Twaun MooreNOP271084-1.12
128Devin BookerPHX201626-1.15
129Jameer NelsonDEN341176-1.22
130Marco BelinelliCHA301057-1.32
131Goran DragicMIA301414-1.34
132Isaiah ThomasBOS271510-1.38
133Trey LylesUTA21948-1.40
134Harrison BarnesDAL241720-1.41
135Tony SnellMIL251335-1.42
136Cody ZellerCHA241023-1.47
137Richard JeffersonCLE36909-1.49
138Wilson ChandlerDEN291269-1.59
139Taj GibsonCHI311295-1.60
140Joe HarrisBKN25903-1.60
141Dario SaricPHI221115-1.61
142Klay ThompsonGSW261604-1.61
143Glenn RobinsonIND231004-1.69
144Jeff GreenORL301166-1.71
145Marvin WilliamsCHA301146-1.75
146Dante CunninghamNOP29889-1.77
147Tobias HarrisDET241571-1.85
148Sean KilpatrickBKN271256-1.85
149Carmelo AnthonyNYK321625-1.88
150Zach LaVineMIN211680-1.90
151Mike MuscalaATL25855-1.92
152Jamal MurrayDEN19893-1.97
153D.J. AugustinORL291004-2.02
154Brandon IngramLAL191394-2.11
155Marcus MorrisDET271539-2.14
156Gordon HaywardUTA261462-2.21
157Joe JohnsonUTA351062-2.32
158Bojan BogdanovicBKN271277-2.38
159Emmanuel MudiayDEN201173-2.46
160Ersan IlyasovaPHI291281-2.47
161Deron WilliamsDAL321112-2.47
162Damian LillardPOR261572-2.53
163Buddy HieldNOP23959-2.55
164Kyle KorverCLE351161-2.60
165Nick YoungLAL311141-2.62
166Aaron GordonORL211381-2.72
167Austin RiversLAC241258-2.78
168Danilo GallinariDEN281439-2.89
169Will BartonDEN26961-2.90
170Allen CrabbePOR241405-3.01
171Rodney HoodUTA241137-3.08
172Jerami GrantOKC221020-3.10
173JJ RedickLAC321262-3.10
174Serge IbakaORL271487-3.32
175Jon LeuerDET271120-3.33
176LaMarcus AldridgeSAS311391-3.36
177Shabazz MuhammadMIN24841-3.59
178Eric GordonHOU281432-3.62
179Nik StauskasPHI231186-4.04
180Doug McDermottCHI25905-4.15
181Tony ParkerSAS34872-4.17
182Jamal CrawfordLAC361273-4.17
183Ryan AndersonHOU281474-5.03
184Arron AfflaloSAC311025-5.70