After the widespread pandemic known as the Coronavirus cut the NBA season short, sports fans have been left without any sports to follow for the first time in recent memory. In lieu of this absence, we decided to take a look at the Top 100 NBA Players based on their stats from the 2019-20 season.
How Rankings are Determined
As always, everyone is entitled to their own opinions about who is more talented than who, and who deserves to be ranked where. We acknowledge this, and because of the impossible task of ranking raw talent, this list is based on a model fair to everyone that considers only objective stats from this season. This keeps players such as Stephen Curry and Kevin Durant from their usual place in the top 10 due to their lack of playing time this season. The weight each stat carries when determining the overall ranking was determined by NBA writers from Overtime Heroics. The weight assigned to each stat is the only subjective part of the list. Once each stat is weighted, the players are given a calculated rating based on how their stats rank amongst the rest of the league and the weight each stat carries. We have the full breakdown of stats used below.
NBA Top 100 Rating Keys
The stats included in this rating have been narrowed down and selected in an attempt to not count any stats twice. That being said, some stats make multiple appearance but carry different meanings. For example, Offensive Rebounds per Game and Offensive Rebound Percentage are both considered. This gives us a look at not only the volume of offensive rebounds a player grabbed, but also their efficiency in the percentage of available offensive rebounds they grabbed. However, only True Shooting Percentage is considered when looking at shooting efficiency since this widely-used metric accounts for 2P%, 3P%, and FT%. Using only this stat allows us to fairly compare players like Rudy Gobert, who doesn’t take hardly any threes, to James Harden, a player who makes a large part of his living behind the 3P and FT lines, and not count any of the respective shooting percentages multiple times.
Some stats are considered in a negative light and will hurt the players overall rating. This includes stats such as turnovers and personal fouls per game. Both of these stats have negative impacts on a game and therefore will have a negative impact on ratings. Another stat that negatively affects a players rating is Usage Rate.
Why would Usage Rate negatively affect a player’s rating you ask? We don’t intend for a player with high usage to be punished with this negative category, only for players with good stats but a lower usage rate to be rewarded. For example, a player that averages 25 points per game with a 35% usage rate will not get quite as much credit as a player that averages 25 points with a 25% usage rate. Both players get credit for their excellent points per game average, but the player with lower usage receives a slightly higher rating in this category. The negative impact of usage rate is not significant enough to harm players like James Harden or Giannis Antetokounmpo’s rating who run the majority of their teams’ offense. It only serves as a boost to lesser used, highly efficient players.
NBA Top 100 Ratings – Key Stats
Offensive Stats – 42% of Overall Rating
Below is a list of the offensive stat categories considered, a short description for some of the less common metrics, and the percentage each stat carries in the overall rank.
Points per Game (PTS) – 16%
True Shooting Percentage (TS%) – 10%
Assists per Game (AST) – 12%
Offensive Rebounds per Game (ORB) – 4%
Assist Percentage; Percentage of teammates FG’s assisted by given player while on the court (AST%) – 3%
Offensive Rebound Percentage; Percentage of available offensive rebounds a player grabbed while on the court (ORB%) – 3%
Offensive Win Shares; Number of wins contributed by a player due to his offense (OWS) – 5%
Turnovers per Game (TOV) – -6%
Turnover Percentage; Turnovers committed per 100 possessions (TOV%) – -5%
Defensive Stats – 33% of Overall Rating
Steals per Game (STL) – 8%
Blocks per Game (BLK) – 8%
Defensive Rebounds per Game (DRB) – 6%
Defensive Rebound Percentage; Percentage of available defensive rebounds a player grabbed while on the court (DRB%) – 3%
Steal Percentage; Percentage of opponents’ possessions ending with a steal by this player while they are on the court (STL%) – 3%
Block Percentage; Percentage of opponents’ 2P attempts blocked by this player while they are on the court (BLK%) – 3%
Defensive Win Shares; Number of wins contributed by a player due to his defense (DWS) – 6%
Personal Fouls per Game (PF) – -4%
Miscellaneous Stats – 25% of Overall Rating
Usage Rate; Percentage of team plays used by this player while on the court (USG%) – -4%
Win Shares; Total number of wins contributed by a player (WS) – 8%
Box Plus Minus; Box score estimate of points per 100 possessions a player contributed above a league average player (BPM) – 5%
Player Efficiency Rating; Measures per minute production, standardized to a league average of 15 (PER) – 10%
Games Played – 6%
NBA Top 100 Ratings Ranked
Using the weights assigned to each of the afore mentioned stat categories, a rating is given to each player based on their stats from the 2019-20 season. These ratings are relative to how everyone else in the league performed, meaning that the player who receives the highest rating from this model receives a relative score of 100.
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