4.07.2009

Dream Angels: Z The Return

Structure (debuted Monday) now revised to be more precise. Here is the starting line-up for the 2010 Golden State Warriors. (UPDATE: Jax fixed.)


















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29 Comments:

At 4/07/2009 6:36 PM, Blogger Ziller said...

Blame Blogger for the degradation on the red spots. It is crystal clear in Photoshop!

 
At 4/07/2009 6:57 PM, Blogger Zydruuuunas said...

GS is a bad team with no blendability.

Why so much about a team that has shown so little?

 
At 4/07/2009 6:59 PM, Blogger afh4 said...

Does it make sense to overlay graphs for starting 5s (or any 5s)? Would it indicate something about team strength or weakness to learn that, when stacked up, the Warriors get a 4 on rebounds?

 
At 4/07/2009 7:08 PM, Blogger Jacob said...

I think they picked Golden State because their charts look the strangest. Any team run by Nellie is probably going to have a strange collection of these.

At first glance, it doesn't really seem like Biedrins is getting enough credit, but the only thing that you might be missing is post scoring. He just seems like too effective of a player to have so few attributes...

 
At 4/07/2009 7:11 PM, Blogger Brickowski said...

This is great stuff, and the Warriors make for a great Z sample. One small quibble: Rebounds are not isolated occurrences for Anthony Randolph -- he's averaging 12.8 over the last five.

His minutes may fluctuate wildly, but I think Z should reflect the actual player and not a coach's stubborn refusal to play said player because of disagreements with the GM. When given the time, Randolph is a rebound snagging freak.

 
At 4/07/2009 7:12 PM, Blogger Jacob said...

I really could look at these things all day. My mind is reeling right now trying to figure out what's missing or how it could be improved.

 
At 4/07/2009 7:14 PM, Blogger Jacob said...

Brickowski,

I don't think that's what they mean by 'isolated.' They're referring to the fact that his rebounding skill set is isolated from other skill sets on the position spectrum. Right?

 
At 4/07/2009 7:15 PM, Blogger Michael Pfeffer said...

Randolph's boards aren't "isolated", the red dot notes his rebounding ability. He just has no corresponding attributes to make it blue.

Further displaying his overall weirdness.

 
At 4/07/2009 7:20 PM, Blogger Jacob said...

One suggestion: lose the red and blue and use different shades of the same color to indicate the strength of the skill set. Deeper shade for a stronger skill, light shade for a lesser strength, etc.

 
At 4/07/2009 7:22 PM, Blogger Ziller said...

Brick -- Michael has it: red means there's no adjacent (read: normally complementary) skill. Randolph is definitely a rebounder.

On Biedrins: he's not a guy you'd expect to get the ball on the low block with his back to the basket regularly, so he doesn't fit "post scoring," which is more Shareef/Shaq. I mean, Turiaf can score in the paint but you wouldn't give him "post scoring" either.

 
At 4/07/2009 7:55 PM, Blogger Milad said...

Why is Stephen Jackson's rebounds blue?
And I like the idea of overlapping Z's, but for example in this case I don't see it making sense regarding the rebounding. GS is second to last in rebounding differential this season, but they get 4 rebounding dots out of 5.

 
At 4/07/2009 7:56 PM, Blogger Phoebus said...

please chart dennis rodman!!

 
At 4/07/2009 8:03 PM, Blogger T. said...

Seeing Maggette clues in that one thing missing is "draws fouls" - since that's a major part of a lot of effective players (and Maggette). Getting the defense in foul trouble allows you to play against their second string and so on and so forth. It's a little bit more nuanced than aggressive drives . .. isn't it? (Especially since big men like Yao, Shaq and Howard also draw a lot of fouls)

 
At 4/07/2009 8:19 PM, Blogger djturtleface said...

All the suggestions for more nuance to the Z's leads me to the conclusion that perhaps simplicity is the best policy, a la "A designer knows he has achieved perfection not when there is nothing left to add, but when there is nothing left to take away."

Can a point guard run an offense without court vision? And are aggressive drives really connected to threes? I would argue aggressive drives are more common in players who don't shoot the three particularly well. Additionally low TOs doesn't really make much sense as a center's characteristic.

When attempting to chart a positional revolution it seems beneficial to simply remove qualities that traditionally aren't really inherent to any specific position. Its not that these qualities aren't important, but they're qualities that have never had a positional identity, and therefore can't be overturned by a revolution.

 
At 4/07/2009 8:51 PM, OpenID Βαρώνος Κόζιμο said...

Man, talk about the fast pace of the internets. Just yesterday Shoals and Ziller discovered the Syntactic Structures, and today we alreadu are thinkng about Minikalist Syntax.

This might just be the greatest thing FD has given us so far.

 
At 4/07/2009 9:25 PM, Blogger Greg said...

Hang on, though - is 'creative scoring' the most typical SF trait now? Or has the position been disowned?

 
At 4/07/2009 10:23 PM, Blogger Phoebus said...

Greg- Bron, Durant, Melo. creative scoring is, yes, definitely, for sure, the SF trait.

 
At 4/07/2009 11:33 PM, Blogger Sam said...

I thought that FD lost its way for a while but the last few posts have been right on. These diagrams are mind-blowingly awesome.

 
At 4/08/2009 5:49 AM, Blogger MineCake said...

It would be interesting to see this manifested with a Z-axis, with the colored circles rising into cylinders to show the degree of proficiency.

But then again, the binary simplicity of exist/does not exist is part of the elegance of the diagrams.

 
At 4/08/2009 12:16 PM, Blogger Morgan said...

I agree with djturtleface. I couldn't say it better myself.

 
At 4/08/2009 12:16 PM, Blogger dunces said...

new task: print on to transparencies, stack and line up images exactly, and look at the team-as-aggregate.

For instance, the Warriors starting five only really have one good 3-point shooter. Has their insane offense changed a lot in the past two years (heresy, but I haven't watched them much) to compensate for the fact that a lot of their heyday-era marksmen are gone? However, I know that they're usually ranked up near the top in rebounding, is that still true?

I'm probably an idiot for trying to read too much into these, and moreso since it's a Nellie team and likely to be completely different tomorrow, but it's just too tempting.

 
At 4/08/2009 12:17 PM, Blogger dunces said...

as in, I second afh4!

 
At 4/08/2009 2:23 PM, Blogger TheRev72 said...

Minor quibble/suggestion: I think that "Threes" and "Aggressive Drives" should switch places. I think "Aggressive Drives" are a trait more associated (today) with SGs and SFs, then a feature SGs share with PGs (PGs tend to get swallowed up in the paint, which makes the good drivers - Rondo, Paul, Williams - exceptional). "Threes" on the other hand, are more a trait of guards generally, SGs and PGs. A SF that can shoot threes is a bonus, but not necessarily a positional norm. For example, when Bron/Melo/Pierce are hitting threes, it's a bonus - but you'd rather they be aggressively driving or working the mid-range game.

 
At 4/08/2009 11:59 PM, Blogger Logan said...

Please, please, please tell me you'll be doing these for some bulk of teams (playoff teams, or all of them, or your top 15, or something)

 
At 4/09/2009 1:26 AM, OpenID jsross119 said...

I agree with TheRev72, shooting 3's is the quintessential skill provided by SGs (traditionally) -- so that should be their primary skill dot.

Other quibbles, there is much overlap between aggressive drives and creative scoring -- I would favor "aggressive scoring" and leave it at the center of the Z structure.

Also, I think the least definitive dot is FG% -- what does it mean? PFs and Cs have high FG%, but so do PGs; like T. suggests, drawing fouls is a much more critical dot to include, and should probably sit somewhere on the axis between SG and PF.

Also, since I'm gabbing on to myself here, rather than low TOs, a dot which really connects the PG and C positions (making it a circle, like somebody suggested in an earlier thread), how about creating a dot for passing -- court vision seems to account for fast-break passing, but half-court set passing is a PF/C skill.

I will add, that these graphs are awesome.

 
At 4/15/2009 2:42 AM, Blogger Alex said...

You'll get better results if you use an image format other than JPEG -- the the JPEG compression formula that's causing the problems.

Save the files are GIF or PNG and they will look much better.

 
At 4/15/2009 2:14 PM, Blogger Caleb Smith said...

This is really cool but I don't get some of the choices. Magette, a forward who shoots at around 45% or so, gets his FG% colored in... yet Chris Paul's FG% bubble (and midrange bubble..) is blank even though he's a guard that shoots at 50%.

Might wanna review some of that stuff... but still, very cool.

 
At 4/16/2009 12:42 AM, Blogger Max said...

i guess lebron would have all his dots filled in? maybe not low turnovers and a red dot on 3s. also how about brandan wright or anthony randolph playing 3 next year to squeeze them both into the starting lineup. eh nevermind, nellie will prolly just sit them on the bench and destroy whatever small measure of confidence theyve gained

 
At 5/17/2013 5:51 PM, Blogger Jim Philips said...

I have to admit that it is easier to understand the idea with that kind of pictographic. Sportsbook Lines should do things more like this.

 

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