This article will use Win Score and Estimated Wins Produced, statistical models created by Professor David Berri from the Wages of Wins Journal, to measure how much a player's box score statistics contributed to their team's performance. An average player produces an estimated 0.100 wins per 48 minutes (EWP48), a star player produces 0.200+ EWP48 and a superstar produces 0.300+ EWP48. More information on these stats can be found at the following links:
Haslem produced an Estimated 0.124 Wins Per 48 minutes (EWP48) in the 13 games he played this season. In an earlier post, I projected Dampier to produce 0.130 EWP48 this season. If Dampier can hit that projection, then the impact to the Heat will be minimal. Before last night's game against the Indiana Pacers, they were on pace to win 62 games.
I don't think Dampier will hit that projection. I think there's a reason that every team passed on Dampier this offseason and that reason can't be good. Think about it - if injury-riddled, bad-luck Portland passed on Dampier with Greg Oden out for the season and their coaching staff just one Marcus Camby injury away from starting Dante Cunningham, then how productive can he be?
I also heard a blogger denigrate the productivity of Zydrunas Ilgauskas on a podcast. Fact of the matter is that he's been more productive than Haslem and the projection for Dampier with 0.152 EWP48 (see the Heat Produced page).
Big Z has been above average in every category except for getting to the line and shooting free throws, steals, assists and personal fouls. The Heat will be fine with him as the starting center - as long as he can hold up (he looked pretty winded getting up and down with the Pacers).