Tuesday, May 20


There was plenty of talk about re-working the seedings for the NBA playoffs this season, especially due to the overwhelming power of the Western Conference. It reached the point that even His Royal Highness David Stern threw his two cents in and admitted the league was considering revamping the settings in the offseason.

Personally, I always thought it was ridiculous. If you’re going to re-seed the playoffs, why even bother having conferences? Why not just have a 30-team league with no conferences or divisions?

As a small bit of evidence of why it is foolish to throw out the existing system, here is a one small bit of statistical evidence. One – and, mind you, just one – way of measuring a team’s effectiveness is to look at the number of points they score per 100 possessions, and the number of points they allow per 100 possessions. This allows for a team’s pace in a way that pure PPG cannot. Herewith, the top seven teams in the differential between points scored and allowed per 100 possessions:

1. Boston, 11.3
2. Detroit, 8.5
3. Lakers, 7.5
4. Utah, 7.3
5. New Orleans, 5.8
6. Orlando, 5.8
7. San Antonio, 5.4

So, in essence, the three best teams are right where they are supposed to be. Honestly, the only team I can see that has a legitimate gripe about re-seeding the playoffs is the Jazz, who were forced to overtake the Lakers, rather than the Magic or another Eastern Conference team. (And, honestly, I’m not about to go back and re-seed the playoffs to see who the Jazz “should” have faced in the 2nd round; if you’ve got that sort of time on your hands, by all means, let me know).

What does it all mean, then? To my way of thinking, it means this: The current system, while not perfect, seems to deliver what it is supposed to – the four best teams in the league are playing for the right to play in the Finals in two weeks.

What more do you want than that?

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

What more could you want? For God to rise out of the ashes and make you Jesus deux.