Browsing All Posts published on »February, 2009«

Can Starbury Help Boston Repeat?

February 26, 2009 by


People tend to think economics is just about stocks, bonds, and money.  Certainly these are topics that many economists find interesting (I don’t know these economists, but I have heard stories). The broader subject of economics, though, is about resource allocation. From the perspective of this broader view we see economists look at such topics […]

The Billups Trade As It Was, As It Is Imagined, and As It Can Be

February 24, 2009 by


One of the very first papers I ever published was “Trading Players in the National Basketball Association: For Better or Worse?”  Co-authored with Stacey Brook, it appeared in Sports Economics: Current Research (edited by John Fizel and Larry Hadley) in 1999.  Stacey and I wrote this paper early in our careers (I was a graduate […]

Self-Inflicted Wounds in Sacramento

February 22, 2009 by


About a week ago, Henry Abbott – at TrueHoop – posted The NBA Story No One’s Talking About About.  Essentially, the Sacramento Kings are losing money and it is possible this franchise – which has stopped in Rochester, Cincinnati, Kansas City, and Omaha – might be moving again.  The problem for Sacramento – according to […]

Helping the Least Productive Number One Pick

February 19, 2009 by


Today is the trade deadline. So the obvious topic of choice is a discussion of a specific trade (or trades).  Unfortunately, most of the trades were really not that interesting (at least to me).  The one possible exception was the Jermaine O’Neal for Shawn Marion trade.  But in thinking about this transaction it occurred to […]

Back to Battier

February 18, 2009 by


This past weekend – in the words of Henry Abbott – Michael Lewis (author of Moneyball) brought the Moneyball story to the NBA.  On the pages of New York Times Magazine, Lewis told the story of the No-Stats All-Star, Shane Battier. As Lewis notes, “Here we have a basketball mystery: a player is widely regarded inside […]

King James and Kobe

February 15, 2009 by


Bill Simmons – the latest issue of ESPN the Magazine – examines the evidence that he is a Kobe-hater.  Simmons provides various definitions of a “Kobe-hater” and explains why none apply to him personally.  Although his list of definitions is quite good, I think he missed the one definition that summarizes the term.  To the […]

Mo Williams is an All-Star? The Real Shamockery

February 12, 2009 by


A quick question:  Should Maurice Williams been named to the All-Star team in 2008? As I recall, no one thought that was the case when Williams was the second leading scorer for the Milwaukee Bucks last season. But as the second leading scorer in Cleveland – the team with the best efficiency differential (offensive efficiency […]

Depressing News in Minnesota

February 12, 2009 by


A few days ago Al Jefferson of the Minnesota Timberwolves tore his ACL and is now lost for the season.  As Table One indicates, Jefferson produced 8.2 wins this season and posted a 0.217 WP48 [Wins Produced per 48 minutes]. The former mark leads the team.  But the WP48 leader on the T-Wolves is Kevin […]

Winning After the Loss of Jameer Nelson

February 10, 2009 by


As of Sunday night the top four teams in the NBA – in terms of efficiency differential (offensive efficiency minus defensive efficiency) – were as follows: 1. Cleveland Cavaliers [10.8] 2. Boston Celtics (9.9) 3. Orlando Magic (9.0) 4. LA Lakers [8.8] And here are the next four teams: 5. Portland Trail Blazers (3.9) 6. […]

Mr. Morrison Comes to LA

February 8, 2009 by


The Los Angeles Times has created the following web page: Best of the Web: Los Angeles Lakers.  The page links to various stories about the Lakers found around the web.  The stories seem to change frequently.  What doesn’t seem to change are the following six sites presented at the bottom. LA Lakers OC Register […]