Thursday, January 7, 2010

Hawks Decade in Review 2: Top Hawks by Statistical Category

First we tackled the Top 20 Events of the previous decade for the Atlanta Hawks.

Now we look at the men who were the Hawks of the Aughts by statistically sorting through the advanced stats (brought to you by Basketball Reference) to look at the top guys in each category.

Categorically Speaking:

We looked at players who played at least 100 games (seemed like a good enough number to get beyond a single season look) with the Hawks in the Aughts--This yielded (32) players for our sample and we looked at each of the Advanced Categories (and the traditional counting stats at the bottom) to see which Hawks led in each one. (Glossary of Terms found here)

PER : 

1. Shareef Abdur-Rahim (211 games) 20.4
2. Joe Johnson (334 games)  18.3
3. Dikembe Mutombo (131 games) 18.3

Shareef provided a 50 point game, fundamental basketball, consistency and little else. Pete Babcock acquired him in the middle of his prime and Billy Knight dumped him at the end, preserving his 20+ PER. 

Trends: We expect that Josh Smith (17.6) will creep into this group by the end of the year or next season.

Others: Jason Terry (17.2), Al Horford (16.6)

Usage Percentage:

1. Joe Johnson   26.2
2. Shareef Abdur-Rahim   25.4
3. Al Harrington (142 games)  24.7

Surprise? Eh, no. Each represents the player upon which the ball stopped in their particular time in the decade. Shareef from 2002 to 2004, Harrington for the next two seasons, and Joe until present (and counting).

Interesting: If we expanded the sample out to (50) games, Isaiah Rider (28.8), Glenn Robinson (28.8), and Antoine Walker (27.9) would have led this category.

Others: Salim Stoudamire (T4th with JT and Josh Smith, 23.1), Dion Glover (7th, 21.0), Al Horford (19th, 16.3--extremely underused)

Total Rebounding Percentage:

1. Dikembe Mutombo   21.7
2. Nazr Mohammed  (198 games) 17.3
3. Al Horford (182 games) 17.1

When Mohammed signed his 5 year, 28.5 million dollar contract in 2001, we thought it was too pricey, but Nazr was plenty productive as a Hawk--similar to Zaza Pachulia, who just missed this list.

Would like to see Josh Smith get a little further up this list--currently, he is 9th at 13.3 career.

Others: Shelden Williams (4th, 16.8), Zaza Pachulia (5th, 15.3), Lorenzen Wright (6th, 14.1)

Assist Percentage:

1. Jason Terry (403 games) 28.3
2. Jacque Vaughn (153 games) 27.9
3. Mike Bibby (146 games) 25.8

Wow. Mike Bibby has already played 146 games with the Hawks. This list illustrates the lack of pass-first point guards in the past decade--something not likely to be reversed anytime soon.

Others: Anthony Johnson (4th, 25.7), Joe Johnson (5th, 25.6), Tyronn Lue (6th, 24.5)

Block Percentage:

1. Theo Ratliff (137 games) 7.4
2. Dikembe Mutombo       5.8
3. Josh Smith  (410 games)  5.4

The Hawks have had themselves some prolific shotblockers (and THHB loves shot blockers)--Ratliff was injured the first season in Atlanta, but before being sent with Abdur-Rahim to Portland Ratliff led the league in blocked shots his two seasons in the ATL.

Others: Solomon Jones (4th, 4.2), Al Horford (5th, 2.8), Cal Bowdler (T6 w/Nazr Mohammed, 2.3), DerMarr Johnson (9th, 2.1)

Steal Percentage:

1. Mario West (117 games)  3.0
2. Jason Terry        2.2
T3. Anthony Johnson (133 games)  2.0
T3: Royal Ivey  (188 games)  2.0
T3: Dion Glover  (273 games) 2.0

Yowza! That's some role playingly goodness. We still marvel at Royal Ivey playing 188 games with the Hawks. Among players with significant minutes on the list are Mike Bibby and Josh Smith (T6, 1.9).

Effective Field Goal Percentage:

1. Josh Childress (285 games)  .543
2. Solomon Jones  (156 games)  .537
3. Maurice Evans  (114 games)  .534

Deke and Horford are next on the list (.530 and .526 respectively), leading players who actually start for the team. It's fitting that Childress and Evans are together on this list--considering one was brought in to replace the production of the other.

Others: Mike Bibby (7th, .514), Joe Johnson (9th, .499), Jason Terry (10th, .485), Shareef Abdur-Rahim (12th, .480)

Offensive and Defensive Rating:


1. Josh Childress     120 
2. Maurice Evans     117
3. Solomon Jones    116


1. Dikembe Mutombo  100
2. Theo Ratliff        102
3. Nazr Mohammed  103

The only player to appear in the Top 5 in both lists? That would be Al Horford (115, 105).

An Homage to Statistics Past:

Points Per Game: 

1. Joe Johnson    21.8
2. Shareef Abdur-Rahim  20.4
3. Al Harrington  18.1

Surprise, surprise---the guys who use the most possessions get the nod in a counting category involving scoring. As with the Usage category above, when we move the line to (50) games, Glenn Robinson, Antoine Walker, and Isaiah Rider all popped into the Top 6.

Others: Jason Terry (4th, 16.2), Josh Smith (5th, 14.1)

Rebounds Per Game:

1. Dikembe Mutombo    14.1
2. Al Horford                  9.6
3. Shareef Abdur-Rahim  8.9

We always took the approach with Shareef while he was here that--while they said he was a 20/10 guy when he came in, he was really a 19/9 guy--in other words a cut below the star level that usually coincided with the 20/10 plateau. When you look at his numbers, he did put up 20/9 for the Hawks, and a good PER, but was certainly a cut (or two) below the perennial all-stars.

Others: Josh Smith (4th, 7.4), Theo Ratliff (5th, 7.3)

Assists Per Game: 

1. Joe Johnson     5.6
2. Jason Terry     5.5
3. Mike Bibby      5.2

Whew---no league leaders there, eh? Babcock's drafting of JT and subsequent "is he or isn't he" approach to the PG position (a philosophy that led to the Bimbo Coles, Emanual Davis and Brevin Knight minutes next to JT) and Billy Knight's "guards are guards" approach left the Hawks rudderless at the point for the decade until the arrival of Bibby. Bibby provided presence and leadership at the point, but was never a pass-first/playmaker type that usually throw up 8-9-10 assists a game.

Others: Tyronn Lue (T4 w/Jacque Vaughn, 3.6)

Blocks Per Game:

1. Theo Ratliff              3.2
2. Dikembe Mutombo  3.1
3. Josh Smith               2.4

Did we mention we love shot blockers? Ratliff had a (7) block game against the Celtics the week he was traded that helped to seal the deal over Mt. Mutombo.

Others: Al Horford (4th, 1.2), Nazr Mohammed (T5 w/Shareef Abdur-Rahim, 0.7)

Next Up in the Decade Installment: THHB Top 10 (and more) Hawks of the Decade


Ron E. said...

Hmm. Mario West and Royal Ivey for steals leaders? What would the steals rankings be if you added a minutes requirement to filter out scrubs like those?

THHB said...

Ron E.,

Great question--

Looking at players who fulfill a meaningful minutes per game and total games (100 games, 25 mpg)---it would be:

JT 2.2
Mike Bibby 1.9
Josh Smith 1.9
Al Harrington 1.7
Josh Childress 1.7