FanPost

Defense and Bigs



After Sam Dalembert was traded, a lot of sixers fans were left scratching their heads. Afterall, Sam was the only big on our team that gave us consistent rebounding, shot blocking, and competent defense. More so, he was a presence in the paint. You could literally see the difference it made having him in the line-up as opposed to on the bench. So why Dalembert was traded for a 22 year old center who lacks rebounding and defense and a "tough guy" with a DUI who plays a position currently clogged on our roster is beyond me.

If we draft Turner in the coming days we will have the starting PG/SG/SF position locked up defensively. However, this leaves a hole in our front court. If we don't have a competent big on our roster, how can we possibly be a good defensive team next season?

To cheer myself up (ok, it's because I'm a loser and had too much free time on my hands today), I decided to take a look at Collin's coaching history and compile a list of the bigs (those listed as C or F-C) for each of his complete seasons (thus, Pistons '97-'98 is not included). I've listed each player's offensive and defensive rebounding percentage (ORB% & DRB%), offensive and defensive rating (Ortg & Drtg), and offensive and defensive win shares (OWS & DWS) in the tables. Above the tables I've listed the season, record, ppg, oppg, and offensive and defensive ratings.


After the jump, you can take a look at all of the cool things I've compiled and read the observations/analysis and/or use the information to make your own observations/analysis.

All information listed was derived from www.basketballreference.com

Note: I've decided to list rebounding percentages to show what bigs were capable (or incapable) rebounders during Collins' reign. I've also decided to list offensive/defensive ratings and offensive/defensive win shares to show how each player contributed defensively when compared to their offensive production. Furthermore, I listed the team stats above each table to show how the team faired as a whole. Lastly, I put the "best" players in terms of the stats provided in bold (I put "bold" in bold in case you didn't know what "bold" was).

Chicago Bulls 1986-1987
Record:  40-42
Points Per Game: 104.8 (20th of 23)
Opponent Points Per Game: 103.9 (2nd of 23)
Offensive Rating: 108.6 (12th of 23)
Defensive Rating: 107.6 (11th of 23)

Player

ORB%

DRB%

Ortg

Drtg

OWS

DWS

Mike Brown

9.7%

20.2%

101

107

0.1

0.9

Dave Corzine


9.7%


17.3%


108


108


1.7


2.5

Earl Cureton

11.4%

11.9%

106

110

0.6

0.9

Charles Oakley


11.2%


30.1%


97


104


-1.1


4.6

Ben Poquette


6.7%


9.7%


121


108


0.3


0.2

Brad Sellers

9.8%

14.4%

107

108

1.4

2.0

Granville Waiters


7.9%


10.6%


99


108


0.0


0.6


Chicago Bulls 1987-1988
Record:  50-32
Points Per Game: 105.0 (19th of 23)
Opponent Points Per Game:  101.6 (1st of 23)
Offensive Rating: 109.0 (9th of 23)
Defensive Rating: 105.5 (3rd of 23)

Player

ORB%

DRB%

Ortg

Drtg

OWS

DWS

Mike Brown

12.9%

17.9%

100

107

0.0

0.7

Dave Corzine


8.4%


17.5%


109


105


1.6


2.6

Artis Gilmore


4.7%


14.7%


89


107


-0.3


0.4

Charles Oakley


13.4%


30.0%


106


103


2.0


4.7

Horace Grant


9.8%


18.2%


109


105


1.6


2.6

Brad Sellers

5.6%

7.4%

105

109

1.3

2.0

Granville Waiters


9.1%


19.0%


69


100


-0.3


0.2


Chicago Bulls 1988-1989
Record: 47-35
Points Per Game: 106.4 (17th of 25)
Opponent Points Per Game: 1.5.0 (5th of 25)
Offensive Rating: 109.1 (12th of 25)
Defensive Rating: 107.7 (11th of 25)

Player

ORB%

DRB%

Ortg

Drtg

OWS

DWS

Bill Cartwright


7.8%


17.7%


100


109


0.1


2.0

Dave Corzine


7.4%


16.8%


99


108


-0.1


1.5

Horace Grant


10.2%


17.6%


112


107


3.3


3.1

Jack Haley

8.7

19.4

100

107

0.0

0.3

Will Perdue

11.3%

15.9%

87

108

-0.3

0.2

Brad Sellers

5.9%

9.2%

108

110

1.3

1.4


Detroit Pistons 1995-1996
Record: 46-36
Points Per Game: 95.4 (25th of 29)
Opponent Points Per Game: 92.9 (2nd of 29)
Offensive Rating: 107.9 (15th of 29)
Defensive Rating: 105.1 (7th of 29)

Player

ORB%

DRB%

Ortg

Drtg

OWS

DWS

Eric Leckner

6.5%

19.5%

100

104

0.0

0.2

Theo Ratliff

10.6%

16.7%

115

102

1.6

2.2

Otis Thorpe

9.3%

19.6%

109

104

3.5

4.1

Mark West

9.0%

14.4%

97

105

-0.1

1.0


Detroit Pistons 1996-1997
Record: 54-28
Points Per Game:  94.2 (24th of 29)
Opponent Points Per Game: 88.9  (2nd of 29)
Offensive Rating: 110.6 (5th of 29)
Defensive Rating: 104.4 (11th of 29)

Player

ORB%

DRB%

Ortg

Drtg

OWS

DWS

Rick Mahorn

11.1%

19.0%

96

104

0.0

0.3

Theo Ratliff

10.7%

13.9%

111

102

1.8

2.1

Otis Thorpe

10.8

18.1

112

105

4.5

3.4


Detroit Pistons : 1997-1998
Record: 37-45
Under Doug Collins: 21-24

Washington Wizards
Record: 37-45
Points Per Game: 92.8 (21st of 29)
Opponent Points Per Game: 94.2 (11th of 29)
Offensive Rating: 104.8 (13th of 29)
Defensive Rating: 106.4 (21st of 29)

Player

ORB%

DRB%

Ortg

Drtg

OWS

DWS

Brendan Haywood


13.0%


16.6%


112


104


1.7


1.4

Christian Laettner


5.9%


18.5%


103


104


0.9


1.6

Jahidi White

13.6%

24.9%

109

102

1.5

1.8


Washington Wizards
Record:  37-45
Points Per Game: 91.5 (24th of 29)
Opponent Points Per Game: 92.5 (10th of 29)
Offensive Rating: 103.0 (21st of 29)
Defensive Rating: 104.1 (18th of 29)

Player

ORB%

DRB%

Ortg

Drtg

OWS

DWS

Brendan Haywood


11.7%


13.0%


115


104


3.1


1.9

Christian Laettner


6.1%


20.8%


113


102


3.8


2.8

Jahidi White

19.0%

18.6%

113

104

0.4

0.2

Charles Oakley


8.5%


16.2%


110


105


0.5


0.5

 

 


Observations/Analysis: 
The best defensive season under Collins is the '87-'88 season when their 105.5 defensive rating put them 3rd best in the league. This also happened to be Collins' best season coaching the bulls. The most dominant big was Charles Oakley with a 30+% DRB% and 4.7 DWS. The following season he was off the roster and Bulls went from 3rd best defensive rating to 11th. I'm not saying there is a direct correlation here, but I have no doubt that Oakley's defensive contributions were beneficial to the team.
The '95-'96 Pistons were 7th best in terms of defensive rating, but none of the bigs on the roster were dominant defensive rebounders.
The information regarding the Wizards tells me that Collins has coached bad rosters and made them improve slightly on the defensive end- 21st in defensive rating in 2001 and 18th in defensive rating in 2002.
In general, Collins either coached decent defensive teams, or made them improve if they were already poor defensively.


Conclusion(s):

Since I am no expert in the statistical analysis department, I am not entirely sure what to conclude from the information. Any feedback in terms of criticism/analysis is more than welcome. What I was able to draw from this information is that Collins has coached bad defensive teams and good defensive teams. However, the roster didn’t necessarily have to have dominant defensive rebounding bigs in order to be a good team defensively. This is not to say that rebounding isn’t important, or that this is a blueprint to success. What is can indicate is that Collins can coach defense and make it work with differing rosters.

Whether or not this Sixers roster will be effective on the defensive end is difficult to tell. However, based on his past coaching, I’m confident they will at least improve by the second year. How do I know this? Collins has coached good teams in the past. By now, he should know what makes a team good and what doesn't. If the holes in our front court make us a poor defensive team this season, I have no doubt that some type of roster change will be made to improve. The recent Dalembert trade seems like a gamble (to be polite), but it also seems like the beginning to a long line of transactions.

Have at it in the comments. Go easy on me since I am very sensitive and tend to cry like a wussy girl (or do I?).

Another user-created LB joint.

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