Bucks draft choices vs. toughest competition


Using Statsheet.com’s complete collegiate box scores and play-by-play, and KenPom.com’s “Pomeroy Ratings“, I took a sample of each of the Bucks draft choices’ Marginal Win Score per 40 performances against their toughest competition.  It was a mixed bag.

Sanders “toughest competition” list was the weakest of the 3 draftees, with the eight opponents having an average Pomeroy pythagorean that would rate them as the 62nd best team on the Pomeroy Ratings if they were considered one team. (Pythag: .835).  Next weakest was Darrington Hobson’s with his opponents having an average Pomeroy pythagorean that would make them the 32nd best team on the Pomeroy Ratings (.913).  Tiny Gallon of Oklahoma faced by far the toughest competition, with his having a combined average that would place them collectively as the 11th best team in the Pomeroy Ratings (.953).  Gallon also faced off against NBA draft picks in five of the seven games I calculated for him.  I don’t believe Sanders faced any, and Hobson faced one.  (Note:  When I say “his opponents”, I’m talking about his opponents in the six to eight toughest games that I chose off each player’s entire schedule).

Also, interestingly, Gallon and Sanders actually squared off early last season, though I didn’t count the game in either’s assessment.  But I did a rough calculation and found that they played each other to a virtual standoff.

I can’t tell you how exactly to interpret the results.  All I can tell you is I’ve only done this twice before and that was last season for Blake Griffin and DeJuan Blair.  Blair recorded a +5.51 against competition that would have ranked 18th on Pomeroy last season, and Griffin recorded a (+6.70) against competition that would have ranked 22nd.  The Bucks draftees didn’t do quite as well, as you will see below (and, as mentioned, Sanders competition was nowhere near the quality Griffin or Blair faced in their analysis).

Larry Sanders MWS40 vs toughest competition:  (+2.97)*

 Sanders most encouraging sign was that he was an excellent rebounder, which is the case with all three of the Bucks picks.  He is also a good shot blocker.  The most discouraging sign in the evaluation was his one awful performance against Old Dominion (you can see the boxscore here).  OD was one of the taller teams in the country according to KenPom’s “Effective Height“, and it was the best defense Sanders faced all year. He didn’t rise to the occasion.  He was demolished.  But he came back and had a very good game against Old Dominion the second time around.  One other note, he is also a bad free throw shooter, as are all of the Bucks picks.

Darrington Hobson MWS40 vs. toughest Competition (+1.38)

Hobson is also an excellent rebounder, but that could be because he played exclusively power forward for the New Mexico Lobos, whereas he will most likely play mainly at small forward in the NBA.  For a power forward, he was an outstanding playmaker.  However, he is also a poor free throw shooter and a very spotty shooter from the field.  As with the rest, he had up-and-down performances.  Washington’s Pondexter got the better of him when the two met (-2.73), and New Mexico lost that game.  His worst performance came against San Diego State (-5.99), but he later redeemed that at home (+8.90).  He does seem to have a few issues with excessive turnovers which he will have to clean up.  I’m still fairly high on him, considering he is a second round pick.

Tiny Gallon  MWS40 vs. toughest competition (-0.90)

Even though Gallon recorded the worst MWS40 of the three draft picks, he remains intriguing.  Again, as I noted above, he faced easily the stiffest competition.  And in five of the seven games he came up on the short end of the production stick.  However, he had his moments.  For instance, in a home-and-home with Baylor, he got crushed by early lottery pick Udoh, but he returned the crushing in Norman and actually won the two game battle (+1.36).  And, his production wasn’t the problem as he actually averaged a better MWS40 in his tough games than he did overall.  The problem was his opponents were exceptionally productive.  Meaning, his defense may need some reorientation.  And he must lose weight or he will have problems.

Also, there were some weird anomalies in his boxscores.  It was like his Coach Jeff Capels would bench him for no apparent reason.

EDIT:  The original version of this post contained a much lower score for Sanders.  I realized I had counted the calculation from the same bad Old Dominion game performance twice rather than including his much better second effort in the overall calculation.  It made a big difference in the final result. 

EndNote:  Here are were the games chosen for each player:

Sanders (Richmond, Rhode Island, Northeastern, Northeastern, Old Dominion, Old Dominion, Nevada)

Hobson (Texas A&M, Dayton, California, San Diego St, San Diego St, Washington, BYU, San Diego St)

Gallon (Texas El Paso, Baylor, Texas A&M, Kansas St, Kansas, Texas, Baylor)

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