Tuesday, April 22

Fearless Predictions

Plenty of ink was spilled as the NBA playoffs approached, with prognosticators opining this way and that on who would win each series.

Most of the time, these “experts” used statistics, previous encounters, injuries, and all that “complicated” stuff that “regular” people like us have no way of understanding.

I mean, seriously, does anyone actually understand offensive efficiency? If John Hollinger says something like, “The Spurs’ Offensive Rebounding PER of 13.8 is the highest since the Lakers’ mark of 14.1 in 1987” would you have any idea what the hell he’s talking about? Sure, “math” is interesting and all, but does it measure “heart,” or “hustle,” or little thing called “desire?” I think not.

Well, I think there’s a better way of studying this, and, so far, it’s completely, 100% accurate. I call it the FSF – the Former Sonic Factor.

I first contemplated this before the playoffs started, but thought it too revolutionary for the masses. People weren’t ready for the truth, they needed to be eased into it. So, with a portion of the first round completed, and my prediction method now established with unassailable credentials, I’m ready to lay it on you. FSF is not complicated and requires very little math; certainly no math you would have learned after second grade. Herewith, the number of former Sonics per team, and how those teams are faring in the playoffs:

BOSTON (1) Ray Allen vs ATLANTA (0)
Celtics lead series 1-0

PHILLY (3) Calvin Booth, Reggie Evans, Kevin Ollie vs DETROIT (0)
Sixers lead series 1-0

ORLANDO (1) Rashard Lewis vs TORONTO (0)
Magic lead series 1-0

CLEVELAND (3) Eric Snow, Wally Szczerbiak, Delonte West vs WASHINGTON (1) Antonio Daniels
Cavs lead series 2-0

S.A. (2) Brent Barry, Kurt Thomas vs PHOENIX (0)
Spurs lead series 1-0

L.A. (1) Vladimir Radmanovic vs DENVER (0)
Lakers lead series 1-0

Hornets lead series 1-0

UTAH (0) vs HOUSTON (0)
Jazz lead series 2-0

It’s obvious, isn’t it? Of the eight playoff series, six of them include a team with a higher FSF. In all six of those series, the team with the higher FSF leads the series!

How much does Detroit regret sending Flip Murray to the Pacers now? Do you think Steve Kerr is even more pissed that Brent Barry signed with the Spurs rather than his Suns?

Of course, the obvious question is, how does Round Two shape up? Well, things get a little hairy, since the FSF system predicts Cleveland knocking off Boston and Philly topping Orlando. In the west, you have the Lakers over Utah and San Antonio over New Orleans/Dallas.

All of which sets up Cleveland beating Philly (note: in the case of two teams having an equal FSF, the team with the best overall player is declared the winner; the rule is known as Don’t Be a Dumbass Corollary) and San Antonio topping the Lakers, giving us the Spurs against the Cavs for the NBA title. This time around, Cleveland wins the rematch from last year as ABC executives impale themselves with blunt objects.


Anonymous said...

I love the FSF Theory and plan to keep track of it during the playoffs (or as much of the playoffs as I can glimpse, seeing as though I only wish bad things to happen to the NBA). However, um....should the likes of Wally Szczerbiak and Kurt Thomas count equally as Ray Allen when compiling the list of Former Sonics? From my point of view, since 2006, the Sonics haven't quite been the "Seattle SuperSonics" but more the "Clayton Bennett Sonics That Happen To Play In Seattle, For The Time Being." Nothing against Wally and Kurt, but they were on our team because Bennett wanted to (a.) slash payroll by getting rid of Allen and Lewis, and (b.) remove as many Sonics from the good 2005 squad, so that no one in Seattle could relate and root for anyone playing on the current squad.

Yeah, I know I'm thinking WAY to hard about this. Anyway, I'm rooting for the 76ers, because they have the highest FRSF: Former REAL Sonic Factor. The Celtics, Spurs, Wiz, Cavs and Lakers are all tied for second place.

Anonymous said...

JL I don't understand something.

How is it Bennett wanted to slash payroll when Presti (& maybe Bennett) negotiated the sign & trade with Orlando that netted the trade exception that allowed the Sonics (who were over the cap) to acquire Kurt Thomas?

I mean, and I don't want anyone mis-construing this for a pro Bennett stance, but how is Bennett cutting more salary when he added almost 9 million dollars to a 53 million dollar team cutting salary? Bennett is awful, and I think despite what he's attempting with the Sonics, which I think became full-fledged since getting Kevin Durant, whom would sell pretty well anywhere, but he's done some good things as an owner. His motives as to why are certainly questionable, but grabbing Kurt Thomas didn't hurt this team for the long haul with all the draft picks they received this past season.

Anonymous said...

You know, you may be right, and perhaps my anti-Bennett bias has distorted the facts here. However, neither Wally nor Kurt nor anyone else we had signed this past season had long contracts....which is precisely why why traded away Allen (plus got the draft pick, of course), and why we didn't pursue Lewis (although signing him to over $100 mill would have been dumb). Presti acquiring Thomas was just a smart basketball move, so yeah, I would say at the beginning of the season, the Sonics weren't looking to slash payroll (which would have been nearly impossible considering the strict trade laws the NBA has). However, nobody we acquired was signed for a long time, is a point I should have raised before. I still believe that the Sonics cut salary, just not for this past season, but for seasons to come.

And since the Sonics got rid of Wally, Kurt and Delonte, for Donyell Marshall and not much else, that kind of confirms my beliefs.