The Toronto Raptors Blog with an Arsenal touch

No news so let’s look at some stats

Posted by Arsenalist on August 5, 2008

Team USA’s looking rather unbeatable. LBJ, Deron Williams and Dwight Howard are just too good for anybody and its not a stretch to think that this team can win each game by 25+. Never say never but I don’t think those Argentians can back-cut this team to death like they did against Antonio Davis and Co. a few years back, much better talent and much better coaching. Larry Brown always struck me as more hype than substance and Coach K’s “back to the basics” philosophy is working, at least in the warmups.

As you might imagine there’s very little (zero) Raptor news. Matt Devlin is covering wrestling for NBC in Beijing and in his latest post from a few days back he’s talking about how Russian teams have ‘money to burn’ when it comes to signing players and the weak dollar isn’t helping matters. Basically money talks and European teams have it and should continue to provide the NBA with competition when it comes to signing players. So far we haven’t seen any big names depart to Europe and until that happens nobody’s going to be hitting the panic button and call the NBA anything but the best basketball league in the world. Whoops! Just as I say that ex-Raptor Carlos Arroyo just bolted to the Holy Land.

OK, so I was bored and started digging up some stats from last season and I came up with the following table. They’re mostly taken from Hoops Stats.

Stat Name Stat NBA Rank
PPG 100.18 13th
OPPG 97.28 10th best
RPG 40.07 28th
Record when scoring 100+ 27-17 16th
Record when opponent scores 100+ 7-30 23rd
SPG 6.95 19th
BPG 4.09 25th
APG 23.81 4th
Turnovers 11.69 2nd best (DET)
3-pt shooting 38.9% 3rd best behind NO and Phoenix
FG shooting 46.6% 7th
FT shooting 81.24% 2nd (DAL)
Point Differential +2.9% 13th
Starter PPG 65.5 22nd
Bench PPG 34.6 3rd
Starter RPG 25.7 30th – dead last
Bench RPG 14.3 7th
Record vs. .500+ teams 11-33
Record vs. sub .500 teams 31-12
Best Player Chris Bosh 11th – 24.3 eff

The two things I took from those is 1) our starting 5 struggles to rebound and 2) we can’t beat good teams. Rebounding was and still is a concern, Jermaine O’Neal was brought in to remedy that and there’s no doubt he’s going to help us in the area, but by the same token we also lost a very good defender and a durable rebounder in Rasho Nesterovic. We definitely improved but its hard to say by how much. Point #2 directly hints at our inability to execute in the fourth quarter for whatever reason. No point getting into the specifics of whether Bosh chokes or if its Parker missing shots, Jose stiffening up or Sam failing us, bottom line is its an area where we must improve.

I’m not one to pay too much attention to the 100 point threshold but looking at our record when we concede more than 100 is very shocking. It obviously speaks of a failing defense but also speaks of an offense that can’t stay in “run ‘n gun” games and can’t sustain a high tempo of play for 48 minutes. One of the goals of next year’s Raptors team is to form an identity by adopting a philosophy and sticking to it through thick and thin. Mitchell needs to decide whether we need to get fast break points and gun for a number each game, he needs to set a goal for a PINP number, a goal for PF assists, post-up counts, guard rebounds etc. Hiding weaknesses and taking advantage of strengths sounds like a simple enough concept but putting that into practice is terribly difficult. This team has enough holes and enough strengths to make Mitchell’s job a nightmare next year and it’ll be upto him to establish a framework where we can consistently play to our strengths by doing all the little things necessary to keep everyone involved while being disciplined. It’s a tall task, I hope Sam’s up to it.

Hoops Addict is having a tournament where he’s picking the best garbage man in the league, he asked me to nominate a player from the Raptors and I had to pick Kris Humphries who is currently losing to Reggie Evans and needs your vote. There’s tons of good candidates, definitely worth a read.

Going on vacation soon. It’ll be quiet around here for a couple weeks. Take it easy.

11 Responses to “No news so let’s look at some stats”

  1. L said

    An interesting piece I found on the possibility of the Magic stealing Bosh from us

    So now there’s a possibility that Andrea might bolt back to Europe if some team offers him big loot AND Bosh leaving us in the same summer of 2010.
    Just 23 months remaining until we find out…

  2. khandor said

    A main culpret in many of the Raptors’ 4thQ meltdowns is no longer on the roster.

    With Jose Calderon running the PG-spot for the Raptors, especially during the critical parts of the final stanza (e.g. the beginning and the end) … the execution of this team’s offense (as a whole) will be improved, specifically, when playing games against the Top Tier teams in the NBA.

    During the last 2 seasons … even though their overall W-L record improved, in comparison to the years the Raptors failed to make the Playoffs … this was an aspect of the NBA game which remained stagnant (i.e. vs the top teams).

    Overall, (i) giving up 100 pts in an NBA game and (ii) not being able to execute your Team Offense coming down the stretch of games against high calibre squads … is a recipe for disaster, and/or an early exit from the Playoffs.

  3. Dave said

    “I’m not one to pay too much attention to the 100 point threshold but looking at our record when we concede more than 100 is very shocking. It obviously speaks of a failing defense but also speaks of an offense that can’t stay in “run ‘n gun” games and can’t sustain a high tempo of play for 48 minutes.”

    Good article. Very true statement above. Good point about the offense as well as the defense being the problem.

    19th in steals and 25th in blocks.

    I’ll offer a different number. The Raptors are 11th in opposition turnover percentage (turnovers per hundred possessions).

    They actually force a healthy does of turnovers. Eleventh, that’s around where Detroit and the Hornets (12th and 13th respectively) are in case you’re wondering what company the Raps keep there. I’m guessing part of the low steals/blocks numbers is from their slow pace and possibly more turnovers that are not steals/blocks than normal (which would mean less transition opportunities).

  4. fluxland said

    Stats. Pffff. ; – )

    With Jose Calderon running the PG-spot for the Raptors, especially during the critical parts of the final stanza (e.g. the beginning and the end) … the execution of this team’s offense (as a whole) will be improved, specifically, when playing games against the Top Tier teams in the NBA.

    HMMMM………. Based on superb clutch play during his NBA career, Kha?

    I think clutch play, as with any team, is what will matter more then anything. Looking forward to Parker shooting more bricks on key buckets or J.K. not shooting 3s for half the season.

  5. RaptorsFan said

    @ #1 – The article is a joke, Orlando is NOT going to get Bosh for what it seems. How on hell are they going to pay for 3 Max contracts in Rashard, Dwight and Bosh?) Not to mention Hedo is looking for a huge payday next year that would mess up their plans for that.

    Anyhow back on topic, I found this interesting:

    Starter PPG 65.5 22nd
    Bench PPG 34.6 3rd
    Starter RPG 25.7 30th – dead last
    Bench RPG 14.3 7th

    Seems that our bench production is pretty good, seeing that our bench is producing the 3rd highest PPG and 7th in RPG. On the contrary, our started PPG and RPG are horrendous and we remain to be the bottom teams in each categories.

    Now with the gains for JO will obviously see a hike in production for the starters, but with the loss of TJ and Rasho means our bench is cut short and productions would decrease – since Calderon is moved up permanently to the starter position.

    My prediction is that our up coming season we would see a stronger starting position, but A LOT weaker for the bench who have been our strength for the past 2 years. A lineup of Ukic/Solomon/Adams/Graham/Moon/Humphries and Bargnani don’t seem enticing and scary at all, where our main production would have to start with Ukic/Bargnani/ with one of the wings Moon/Adams/Solomon/Graham helping out.

  6. FAQ said

    The 2008-09 edition of the Raptors is a ‘new’ team, again, and we won’t know how this team will jell until after Xmas, barring injuries to any of the starters. If any of the starters are injured for any extended period … might as well start discussing high draft picks.

  7. cuzzy said

    Great work Arse keeping the summer Raps chat going even with no news.

    I think this year’s team will be starting over in terms of philosophy.

    I think the Raps will go more towards a strong starting team and less on the overhyped depth angle.

    As the season goes on hopefully Smitch works out a solid 8 man rotation that knows their roles and knows when and how much they will play.

    it works for other teams, why not the Raps.

    Funny enough I asked the hypothetical question today, who would win in a game between the raps of two years ago and the raps of last year.

    As for clutch, it is overused as well. I don’t really think anyone on the Raps is what you would call clutch. Sure some of them do it once in a while but there is nobody on the Raps that I would be the farm on in a tight one. Maybe Kapono to hit a shot.

  8. Crank said

    Hollinger rated as the third best team in the league based mostly on point differential. Before Bosh got injured and we lost 5 straight out West we had a respectable PD stat. Thats another stat that you can’t read much into. Surprising to see our bench rebounding be so good.

  9. L said

    The Magic will only have 43 mill on their salary cap by then, and with the yearly increase of it, the salary cap then should be just over 60 mill.
    You’d think that having no taxes in Florida, great weather and an opportunity to play with a best friend who would complement your game perfectly would get Bosh to bolt to Orlando don’t you?

  10. RaptorsFan said

    @ L – Actually, from your stupid realgm article, it said that the Magic would be at $49,990,263 (50 million) with Howard, Shard, Nelson, Petrius and Coutney Lee locked up. Not 43, so let’s take their statistic.

    Let’s assume that the Cap was set at generously say, 66.5 million. Since the cap from past precedents has been raising about 3 million a year, it is safe to assume that the cap then would be about 65-67 million.

    With that said, there is hope for Bosh to Orlando afterall!

    But wait…

    Did we just left out someone important in this conversation, the recent ‘most improved player of the year’? Yeah. Turkoglu. He has a Early Termination Option setting next year (09′ summer), earning a mere 6.8 million this following season.

    Now… you think after seeing Shard’ cashing in his big ass paycheck that is making 20+ million by 2010 that Hedo not wanting to do the same? Considering Hedo’s contributions of the team seem to outweigh Lewis’s, you bet your ass that Hedo is going to jump on the opportunity to earn himself a nice cheque.

    Guessing from what Rashard got, I think Hedo should be getting 1 BAZILLION dollars. Or 25 million. But jokes aside, Hedo would be set to make – if he is willing to give himself a hometown discount starting from at least 10-11 million, going up to about 13-14. So there goes your Bosh pipedream already.

    But of course, let’s just say that Orlando is highly considering to get Bosh @ whatever slim chance they have and let their fanfavorite, team offense facilitator, ‘best passer’, most improved player go, for NOTHING, then I guess they have a chance. Funny thing is, if GM Otis Smith does that, he surely deserves to be shot, neutered and tied up with a big sign saying ‘biggest dumbass in the world’ by Orlando fans.

    To summarize, for Orlando is get Bosh – they need to:

    1. Manage their cap EXTREMELY well – since they already fucked up bad with Shard, I don’t see that happening. What this would mean is that Orlando would have to seriously start sheeding contracts and not sign them (Pietrius). They CANNOT use the MLE or LLE for the next 2 seasons, or sign anyone that would higher their cap.

    2. Let go of Hedo, let him walk – now even if they manage the cap well, they will need to think about what to do with Hedo. Signing the MIP of 08′ that had won you a number of games, or letting him go for the slim chance of signing Bosh. Any reasonable GM would go with Hedo since there is no guarantee at ALL that you are getting Bosh. But hypothetically, for Bosh to come to Orlando, they would have to let him go. Or expiring contracts. And if they went with that, that would truly be a steal of the century, more absurd than the Gasol trade by far. I mean, Cavaliers would jump all over that and win the championship in the next 2 years before Orlando even getting Bosh.

    3. Trade away/sell/give away picks – Yeah, those draft picks of 09′ – 10′ 1st and second round are going bye bye for any chance to get Bosh.


    So to respond to the question, yes it does seem enticing – yes there is a way to get Bosh to Orlando, but a very slim one EVEN if Bosh wants to go.

  11. RaptorsFan said

    To mention, with the outlook of Raptors’ future Cap, we are in a much better shape for the up coming 2010 free agency.

    We have @ the moment only 4 players signed past 2010, Calderon, Kapono (10′-11′)and Bosh (player option), and Ukic. Andrea we have a team option @ 09′ summer and qualifying offer in 010′. Granted that we would probably look for a new starting SG after Parker’s contract is over and resign Moon for about 4-5 mill a year for 3-4 years, we still are in good shape with good contracts.

    Everyone else comes off the books @ 2010 with how the contracts are constructed, O’neal will shed 23+ mill off the books, and the other small contracts all come off.

    Bosh = 17.5 mill
    Calderon = 8.5 mill approx.
    Kapono = 6.6 mill
    Ukic = 1.5 – 2.2 mill?

    We’re talking about only 35 mill capspace being held past 2010. If we decide to resign Moon and him giving us a hometown discount, we could get him for 3 – 4 years @ 4 million. Then we will use a portion of the MLE or LLE to get another Vet like Parker for the next 2-3 years, or just resign Parker if his age doesn’t get to him. With that said, our cap would still be less than 45 million with rookie contracts and so forth. Meaning that we still have upwards of 21-22+ mill to spend for a free agent.

    But of course it all hinges on Andrea’s performance the next 2 years If Andrea doesn’t live up to expectations we could trade him for picks and expirings to get capspace, or with Moon if not being able to negotiate a contract, package him with Andrea for a sold wing 2 year rental.

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