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View Full Version : The relationship between inside shot attempts and free throw attempts



DenButsu
05-28-2009, 02:26 AM
These numbers are for the entire 2008-09 season, but they generally apply to individual games as well for the most part. I think the chart speaks for itself, but as you can see there is a very strong positive correlation between how much a team shoots the ball inside and how often they get to the line. Main point being, a game in which each team was called for 37 fouls was not necessarily fairly officiated, and a game in which one team was called for 45 fouls but the other was called for 30 was not necessarily unfairly officiated, both of which are the types of arguments that I've seen posted a lot here recently (by fans of all teams - I'm not talking about any specific games here, although I admit that this is somewhat in defense of the Nuggets since they top the list), and I basically just wanted to show why that assumption was a false conclusion that many are drawing about the pure number of trips each team takes to the line.

http://img527.imageshack.us/img527/5759/ftainsideshotconnection.png

FTA Rank = How the team ranks in the NBA in free throw attempts (listed under FTA)

Inside Shot% Rank = How the team ranks in the NBA in terms of the highest percentage of their shots being taken inside, as opposed to 3pt shots or 2pt jump shots (percentages listed under Inside Shot%)

Inside Shot% Rank - FTA Rank Difference = How much higher or lower a team is ranked in the NBA by their FTA rank than their Inside Shot% rank.

The real meat of the thing is the color coding and the breakdown at the bottom, where we can see a full 20 of the teams in the league have a difference of 5 or less in their FTA rank and Inside Shot% rank. Or in other words, this pretty tangibly shows that teams that take it to the rim a lot get rewarded with more calls, and teams that don't, don't.


A certain someone will probably come around and bust my balls for this being per game based rather than per possession, but I think it still serves as some pretty objective proof that the argument that a team that got to the line more by default got the better end of the officiating is pretty much bogus.

DenButsu
05-28-2009, 02:31 AM
BTW, one obvious question this raises:

Why don't the Clips, Bobcats, Rox and Knicks get to the line so much when they're shooting so many inside shots, and why is the opposite true for the Warrior, Kings, Hawks and Magic? For 2 of the latter bunch, I'd guess Dwight and AJ have a lot to do with it.

Chronz
05-28-2009, 03:14 AM
This kind of analysis is always tricky to me, I agree with the concept the more you drive the more calls you get, but if your getting to the line wouldnt that eliminate a possession on the shot chart. And as for the Clippers I can answer that, Z-Bo and Thornton. They take alot of inside shots but they settle for minimal contact. Al Thornton has all the tools to be an All-Star but he shies away from contact with double clutches and such. Same thing with the Rockets, Artest and Tmac were regularly rejected on the inside.

And yes the idea that people can prove bad officiating by posting raw ft tallies is moronic at best.

I remember G.Goodman I think it was or some know it all stathead, that said teams that play at a faster pace will generally get more dunk in transition where there is no contact but will boost the inside shot% of teams. So that would explain GSW - ORL - SAC - ATL ( I think Im not sure about their pace measurements). So yes per possession breakdowns would probably remedy a few of these problems but it still comes down to the players.

superkegger
05-28-2009, 03:35 AM
I'm still not sure what it all means. Aggressive teams get calls, and the Nuggets have all year. the point?

Chronz
05-28-2009, 04:00 AM
I'm still not sure what it all means. Aggressive teams get calls, and the Nuggets have all year. the point?

Hes getting at the fact that whenever someone says we were robbed, the other team shot 20 more free throws, just know their analysis is full of ****.

superkegger
05-28-2009, 04:09 AM
Hes getting at the fact that whenever someone says we were robbed, the other team shot 20 more free throws, just know their analysis is full of ****.

Which honestly I still don't really follow.

More than anything, it feels like Den is trying to justify why Denver gets so many calls based upon regular season stats. And that the cals Denver gets are justified, and when they don't get the calls, it isn't justified.

But I was informed earlier in these playoffs that what happened in the regular season doesn't matter. That the fact that the Lakers swept the Rockets or that they beat the Nuggets 3-1 doesnt' matter. Or that Kobe torched both teams, or that this or that and so on. I've heard to no end how regular season stats don'e matter when it comes to the Lakers doing this or that vs a team.

But now these stats matter.

Interesting.

DerekRE_3
05-28-2009, 04:15 AM
The Bobcats don't get any respect...I've watched almost all of their games...and they just don't have guys that get superstar calls. Their most well known player is Gerald Wallace...and he's no superstar. He does get to the line a lot...but there were a lot of time that he got hammered inside and didn't get the call.

montazingmvp
05-28-2009, 04:18 AM
BTW, one obvious question this raises:

Why don't the Clips, Bobcats, Rox and Knicks get to the line so much when they're shooting so many inside shots, and why is the opposite true for the Warrior, Kings, Hawks and Magic? For 2 of the latter bunch, I'd guess Dwight and AJ have a lot to do with it.

corey maggette is the main reason for the warriors...he attacks the basket, and has always gotten to the line alot

superkegger
05-28-2009, 04:20 AM
The Bobcats don't get any respect...I've watched almost all of their games...and they just don't have guys that get superstar calls. Their most well known player is Gerald Wallace...and he's no superstar. He does get to the line a lot...but there were a lot of time that he got hammered inside and didn't get the call.

Well this is where the whole if your getting to the line wouldnt that eliminate a possession on the shot chart argumetn comes in. ANd then where this beign per game based rather than per possession based comes into play.

DerekRE_3
05-28-2009, 04:20 AM
BTW, one obvious question this raises:

Why don't the Clips, Bobcats, Rox and Knicks get to the line so much when they're shooting so many inside shots, and why is the opposite true for the Warrior, Kings, Hawks and Magic? For 2 of the latter bunch, I'd guess Dwight and AJ have a lot to do with it.

I know why the Kings get so many free throw attempts...Kevin Martin. He averaged over 10 attempts a game this year (2nd in the NBA). The guy has a knack for getting to the line.

DenButsu
05-28-2009, 05:04 AM
Which honestly I still don't really follow.

More than anything, it feels like Den is trying to justify why Denver gets so many calls based upon regular season stats. And that the cals Denver gets are justified, and when they don't get the calls, it isn't justified.

But I was informed earlier in these playoffs that what happened in the regular season doesn't matter. That the fact that the Lakers swept the Rockets or that they beat the Nuggets 3-1 doesnt' matter. Or that Kobe torched both teams, or that this or that and so on. I've heard to no end how regular season stats don'e matter when it comes to the Lakers doing this or that vs a team.

But now these stats matter.

Interesting.



Seriously, I set to making this chart after the game to take my mind OFF the game, since I was upset about it, and when I did it was because it's something I've been meaning to get around to for a long time but never did, and it's not only in the LAL-DEN series, but in pretty much every series this postseason that I've seen this argument get made, and I also saw it posted a lot throughout the regular season. Part of my doing this was to find out for myself if my own assertion could be verified statistically (in my opinion, it was), and part of it was so that if I was able to put together a solid post about it, instead of re-hashing the same argument again and again I could just link to it and say, "That argument doesn't make sense, read this and you'll understand why I say that."

MoBASS
05-28-2009, 12:26 PM
Where do you get the Inside Shot % numbers from?

DenButsu
05-28-2009, 12:40 PM
Where do you get the Inside Shot % numbers from?

Sorry, I should have posted that.

They're from 82games (http://www.82games.com/0809/FGTEAM11.HTM).

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Which reminds me, superkegger, that I didn't address one point you made about why I used regular season stats. One reason was that they cover a larger sample size. Another was that I don't know where to find such detailed shooting stats for the postseason.

But separately, you raised my asserting that the regular season didn't matter now that the postseason had begun. When I said that I was referring to something completely different and unrelated to this kind of topic - that being that the season series between teams should not necessarily having much bearing on how the playoff series would bear out, and specifically in reference to the LAL-DEN series I thought they were pretty irrelevant since two of Denver's 3 losses were last November (one with AI) when the Nuggets weren't the team they are now, and then the last two games were split, with both teams playing fairly badly in their losses.
/off topic