Please Don’t Feed the Anomalies

by Russ Bengtson

This post was inspired by a recent comment regarding Amare Stoudemire’s below-par rebounding numbers (8.5 per), which led me to look up Eddy Curry’s triple-eagle rebounding numbers (5.5 per). Anyway, while I was on I came across some fairly surprising early-season statistical truths. (For the record, I did NOT use examples where a guy earned his perfect shooting percentage while taking three shots—for instance, it’s cool that Zach Randolph is shooting 50 percent from three, but he’s also two-for-four.):

Five players averaging more rebounds than Eddy Curry (5.5):

Dorell Wright (5.7)
Mike Dunleavy (5.7)
Tim Thomas (5.8)
Hedo Turkoglu (6.3)
Quentin Richardson (6.6)

Five players averaging more assists than Stephon Marbury (4.9):

Kobe Bryant (5.1)
Andre Iguodala (5.1)
Paul Pierce (5.4)
Tracy McGrady (5.5)
Andrei Kirilenko (6.1)

Five players averaging more points than Shaquille O’Neal (14.7):

Raymond Felton (14.9)
Eddy Curry (15.2)
John Salmons (15.5)
Mike Dunleavy (16.5)
Steve Nash (17.6)

Five players averaging more blocks than Tyson Chandler (1.35):

Danny Granger (1.45)
LeBron James (1.50)
Jason Maxiell (1.60)
Jamario Moon (1.71)
Andray Blatche (1.80)

Five players with a higher field goal percentage than Yao Ming (50.4):

Steve Nash (51.1)
Kwame Brown (51.9)
Deron Williams (52.8)
Rajon Rondo (54.7)
Josh Childress (56.3)

Five players averaging more steals than Kirk Hinrich (1.0):

Rashard Lewis (1.04)
J.R. Smith (1.11)
Anfernee Hardaway (1.19)
Beno Udrih (1.29)
Carmelo Anthony (1.33)

Five players with a better three-point percentage than Rashard Lewis (38.9):

Nate Robinson (39.3)
Eduardo Najera (40.0)
Ira Newble (42.1)
Damien Wilkins (42.2)
Damon Stoudamire (45.5)

Five players with a better free-throw percentage than Dirk Nowitzki (85.0):

Pau Gasol (86.5)
Brad Miller (86.8)
Yao Ming (88.0)
Ryan Gomes (89.7)
Joe Smith (92.9)

Five players averaging fewer turnovers than Jason Kidd* (4.0):

Allen Iverson (3.9)
Stephen Jackson (3.7)
Zach Randolph (3.1)
Jamal Crawford (2.8)
Eddy Curry (2.1)

*I didn’t think he was averaging that many, either.

Five players with more double-doubles than Tim Duncan (8):

Drew Gooden (9)
Andris Biedrins (9)
Andrew Bynum (10)
Antawn Jamison (14)
Chris Kaman (15)