The most frequent answer provided by Green Bay Packers coach Mike McCarthy in his post game press conferences is some variation of “I don’t want to comment on that until I have had a chance to look at the films.”
Similarly, I may need to refrain from making absolute comments about individual Milwaukee Bucks player performances in any given game until the next morning when I have had a chance to get a full statistical picture of the game using play-by-play transcripts and the popcornmachine’s invaluable game flow charts.
After reconstructing the Bucks opening game loss this morning, I have to walk back several of the off hand observations I made in a postgame post last night. I’ll do that using bullet points.
NEW COMMENTS ON GAME ONE
1. Remember how I wrote that Bucks rookie Larry Sanders was a “+11” in the NBA boxscore but that I saw no evidence that he contributed to that overwhelmingly positive result? I take that comment back. If you look at his defense, you find clear evidence of his impact. His counterpart centers were wildly unproductive, posting a combined (-4.5) win score points in his 4.5 minutes of action, so whereas I thought Sanders contributed zero win score points, in fact his Marginal Win Score was (+4.5). A very good start to the season for the rookie.
2. Drew Gooden was really not responsible for most of the damage done by David “Mark” West. That responsibility falls to Ersan Ilyasova. Thus Gooden had an outstanding Bucks debut while Ilyasova’s could not have been worse.
3. Brandon Jennings got eaten alive by Chris Paul. (Not to say “humiliated”, rather “outproduced”. But many point guards in the Association have had that experience).
4. Keyon Dooling’s performance was even worse than I characterized it after the game. He’s already (-7.0) marginal win score points in the whole after playing only 17:00 minutes of action.
5. In fact, along with Jennings, you can place a large portion of the loss on Ilyasova and Dooling. (The difference is that Jennings was outclassed by the best point guard in basketball.) The two reserves accounted for only 33:00 of the Bucks 240:00 player minutes and yet produced a combined win score deficit of (-15.0). To put that in context, in the remainder minutes of the game the rest of the Bucks produced a win score surplus of (+12.5).
Here are the Raw Marginal Win Score rankings, along with each player’s per minute Marginal Win Scores, followed by their Win Contributions.