Thursday, December 9, 2010

Heat 111, Jazz 98: Revenge Is A Dish Best Served Heated

Before the game, I only gave the Heat a 42.4 percent chance of avenging their loss to the Jazz in the Musical Miracle by Biscayne Bay on November 9th, but Miami was able to overcome those odds and get their revenge with a 111-98 defeat of Utah in Salt Lake City.

How did they do it? Let's go through the stats.

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:


Game Recap
A brief announcement: This recap will be narrated by my twitter account, not because I have great insight when I watch the game but because what I get from watching the game is usually different than what I get from the box score. 

Now let's get started with a little help from Slick Rick.


From: @reservoirgod 
Sent: Dec 8, 2010 9:02p 

Paul Millsap has the signature of an illiterate man #NBA 

sent via ÜberTwitter 
On Twitter: http://twitter.com/reservoirgod/status/12688601196269569

NBA League Pass aired the Utah Jazz broadcast. It began with a Paul Millsap highlight package and a graphic of his signature that looked like he didn't take too many classes at Louisiana Tech. Don't take my word for it, check it out for yourself.

Paul Millsap does not write like a learned man

From: @reservoirgod 
Sent: Dec 8, 2010 9:11p 

Jazz fans, I saw your thoughts on LBJ that aired during pre-game. U can all kiss the #HeatShitList 

sent via ÜberTwitter 
On Twitter: http://twitter.com/reservoirgod/status/12690813855211520

Seriously, the Jazz fans had the loudest boos for LeBron James that I've heard outside of Cleveland. Why? Actually, it doesn't matter. Kiss the list Jazz fans.


From: @reservoirgod 
Sent: Dec 8, 2010 9:36p 
Fucking Millsap still outworking the Heat. He's the #NBA version of the lil' engine that could. Hustle @mchalmers15! 
sent via ÜberTwitter 
On Twitter: http://twitter.com/reservoirgod/status/12696981629566976

Millsap didn't dominate the Heat like he did in Miami primarily because he was terrible in the second and fourth quarters (-0.288 EWP48). But he was very productive in the first quarter when I sent this tweet with eight points and two rebounds on 4-6 shooting from the floor.

Millsap produced 0.445 EWP48 in the first quarter and his hustle at the end of the quarter pulled the Jazz within one-point of the Heat, 28-27. In Miami, Millsap was the most productive Jazz player with 0.343 EWP48. Last night, his production dropped to 0.206 EWP48 and he was only the second-most productive Jazz player.


From: @reservoirgod 
Sent: Dec 8, 2010 9:40p 
This might be one of those #NBA games Spo has 2 play the 3 Kings 40 mins ea. 
sent via ÜberTwitter 
On Twitter: http://twitter.com/reservoirgod/status/12697956985610241

The Three Kings played 119.3 minutes for an average of 39.8 minutes each. LeBron, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh combined to produce an estimated 0.695 wins produced, which was 80.6 percent of the Heat's estimated wins produced total. That should be enough to win as long as the supporting cast doesn't tank the game with negative production.

Last night, the supporting cast didn't bring a lot to the table (like they did last week against the Pistons) but it was positive. They were below average with 0.066 EWP48 but Zydrunas Ilgauskas gave his second-best performance of the season with 0.447 EWP48 and an estimated 0.243 wins produced.

It was Big Z's first time scoring and being productive since the win over the Pistons on December 1st. His performance against the Jazz was surprising since he was terrible in the last game with -0.184 EWP48.

Big Z has now played five games above 0.400 EWP48 (a superstar produces 0.300+ EWP48) this season and the Heat are 4-1 in those games.


From: @reservoirgod 
Sent: Dec 8, 2010 9:41p 
Time 4 @mchalmers15 2 come outta the game. He's fucking messing up like he did in MIL. 
sent via ÜberTwitter 
On Twitter: http://twitter.com/reservoirgod/status/12698196316786688

Mario Chalmers was terrible in the second quarter with -0.162 EWP48. His production consisted of a missed three-pointer, one rebound, one assist and three fouls in 9.5 minutes. Not a good run.

Chalmers was also terrible in Monday night's game against Milwaukee with -0.293 EWP48. The road trip hasn't gotten off to a good start for Chalmers. Before the road trip, Chalmers had played above average in five consecutive games.


Charles Barkley and Kenny Smith always say the difference between star players and role players is that role players struggle on the road. It will be interesting to see if Chalmers will be able to get his game back on track in the last two games of this road trip.


From: @reservoirgod 
Sent: Dec 8, 2010 9:42p 
Bring back Eddie House RT @reservoirgod: Time 4 @mchalmers15 2 come outta the game. He's fucking up like he did in MIL. 
sent via ÜberTwitter 
On Twitter: http://twitter.com/reservoirgod/status/12698514177925121

The South Florida Sun-Sentinel ran a story yesterday about House losing his spot in Coach Spoelstra's rotation to Chalmers and he reportedly doesn't know why. Spoelstra appears to have made the decision after the Heat's 16th game of the season against Philadelphia on November 26th to give Chalmers more playing time.

House played 341.3 minutes in the first 16 games this season compared to just 72.7 minutes played for Chalmers. In the first 16 games, House produced .076 EWP48 compared to Chalmers' production of 0.013 EWP48.

House has only made four appearances in the last seven games and played just 33.4 minutes after appearing in each of the first 16 games. In the last seven games, House has produced 0.187 EWP48 while Chalmers has played 154.9 minutes in the last seven games and produced 0.174 EWP48.

I can understand House's confusion based on those numbers, but Chalmers has been more productive than House for the season. Mario's produced 0.123 EWP48 for the season compared to Eddie's 0.085 EWP48.

The problem House could be having, though, is that he's been just as productive a point guard as Chalmers but has played the majority of his minutes at shooting guard, where his production has been below average. The figure below illustrates how Chalmers and House's production compare this season.


I think the figure provides some insight into Spoelstra's decision to switch to Chalmers. The only thing House does well as a point guard is shoot the ball. If Spoelstra wants more well-rounded production from the backup point guard position, then Chalmers is the clear choice because he provides above average production in terms of steals, ball-handling, shot-blocking and passing even though he's shooting terribly.

From: @reservoirgod 
Sent: Dec 8, 2010 10:04p 
Deron Williams is a straight up thug on offense, man. He's constantly shoving ppl w/ and w/out the ball. Goddamn #NBA refs don't call shit anything 
sent via ÜberTwitter 
On Twitter: http://twitter.com/reservoirgod/status/12704192061775872

Deron Williams was a load for the Heat too handle. He used his speed and handle to get by LeBron and bully past the rest of the Heat defenders on his way to producing 0.331 EWP48. He was the most productive player on the floor for Utah, and his production was consistent with his last game against the Heat when he produced 0.318 EWP48.

If Williams could have knocked down his three-pointers last night, then it could have been a different game, but since he was 0-5 he didn't even attempt one in the fourth quarter when the Jazz could have used them to get back in the game.


From: @reservoirgod 
Sent: Dec 8, 2010 10:29p 
D-Wade 2 AK47: "DEEZ NUTS!" #NBA action is fantastic 
sent via ÜberTwitter 
On Twitter: http://twitter.com/reservoirgod/status/12710282849681408


This dunk by Wade was a rare highlight in a third quarter filled with lowlights as the Jazz outplayed the Heat coming out of the locker room. As a team, the Jazz played like stars with an average of 0.263 EWP48 while the Heat played like bums with an average of -0.006 EWP48.

Wade only produced just -0.095 EWP48 in the third quarter which has usually been his most productive quarter. Wade averages 0.292 EWP48 in third quarters this season and went OFF against the Jazz in Miami during the third quarter with 0.762 EWP48.


Wade wasn't the only Miami player with negative production in the third quarter. Every players' productivity was below zero in the third quarter except for LeBron and Big Z. Big Z played his best quarter of the game when the Heat needed it most by producing 0.919 EWP48 and LeBron played his second-best quarter of the game by producing 0.646 EWP48.

With the team going so bad, Spoelstra played LeBron the entire quarter and as a result he didn't have much left for the fourth quarter. In the final period, LeBron was below average with 0.075 EWP48 but he did have a great dunk off a Wade alley-oop.



From: @reservoirgod 
Sent: Dec 8, 2010 10:33p 
I'm so sick of Wade and these fucking TOs... 
sent via ÜberTwitter 
On Twitter: http://twitter.com/reservoirgod/status/12711501194334208

Wade only has two weaknesses in his production this season - free throw shooting and turnovers. He's averaging 4.7 turnovers per 48 minutes, which is consistent with his career average but higher than his average over the last two seasons when he only had 4.2 and 4.4 turnovers per 48 minutes.


From: @reservoirgod 
Sent: Dec 8, 2010 10:45p 
LBJ might give Jazz 40 2nite but he's gotta stop losing track of AK47 on D... 
sent via ÜberTwitter 
On Twitter: http://twitter.com/reservoirgod/status/12714390562283520

LeBron scored his 27th point with 3:55 left in the third quarter for an average of 47 points per 48 minutes. With the rest of the team playing so bad in the third quarter, I thought he was going to have to carry the Heat in the fourth quarter, too.

Well, LeBron only took one more shot in the third quarter (which he missed) and the rest of the team stepped up in the fourth quarter (except for Erick Dampier). LeBron only played eight minutes in the fourth quarter. If he kept scoring at the rate he was scoring when I sent that tweet, then he would have scored 39 points.

As much as that tweet was about offense, it was also about defense. LeBron's defense against Andrei Kirilenko was terrible in the third quarter as he kept trying to cheat off him and AK-47 took advantage by scoring seven points on just four shots.

AK-47 only had one good quarter in the game and it was that third quarter with 0.102 EWP48. His production was below zero in every other period and the only thing he did in that third quarter was score, courtesy of LeBron's inattentive defense. His only other stat in that period was a personal foul, so all of his production came from the points he scored.

Am I nitpicking LeBron? Yes. Yes, I am.

The truth is that he shut AK-47 down for three quarters. Kirilenko finished the game with -0.133 EWP48, which was very different from the 0.313 EWP48 he produced in the miracle game the Jazz won in Miami.


From: @reservoirgod 
Sent: Dec 8, 2010 10:46p 
Too much LBJ ballhandling in this 3rd qtr for MIA. Let Arroyo run da mu'fucking point... 
sent via ÜberTwitter 
On Twitter: http://twitter.com/reservoirgod/status/12714776786378752

This was an idiotic tweet. Arroyo was the worst Heat player on the floor last night with -0.350 EWP48.


From: @reservoirgod 
Sent: Dec 8, 2010 11:06p 
Here MIA goes w/ this hero shit garbage again and the lead starts 2 evaporate... 
sent via ÜberTwitter 
On Twitter: http://twitter.com/reservoirgod/status/12719761792176128

This tweet was sent after Wade and LeBron both bricked pull up three-pointers and Millsap was headed to the line for two free throws to cut a lead that was just 11 points 75 seconds ago to five points.

He bricked both free throws. Karma never tasted so sweet.


From: @reservoirgod 
Sent: Dec 8, 2010 11:12p 
WHY DA FUCK IS CHALMERS STILL IN DA GAME? 
sent via ÜberTwitter 
On Twitter: http://twitter.com/reservoirgod/status/12721195363344385 
From: @reservoirgod 
Sent: Dec 8, 2010 11:13p 
I JUST ASKED THAT QUESTION! RT @IraHeatBeat: Why is Mario Chalmers still out there? 
sent via ÜberTwitter 
On Twitter: http://twitter.com/reservoirgod/status/12721462087524352

These two tweets also turned out to be idiotic. The problem for Chalmers was that he had two turnovers in 59 seconds with less than five minutes to go in the game. The problem with the tweets was that they were the only two turnovers he had in 25.4 minutes played.

Chalmers had a huge fourth quarter for the Heat with 0.411 EWP48. He scored eight points on just six shots, with one rebound, one assist, two steals, two turnovers and one foul.

Chalmers played the entire fourth quarter and, with Arroyo literally playing his worst game of the season, it was the right move for Spoelstra to make. Coincidentally, Arroyo's second-worst game of the season (-0.317 EWP48) came in New Orleans against Chris Paul, so he hasn't been good against the consensus top two point guards in the league.

Chalmers ended the game by serving up a three-pointer in the last eight seconds that cleansed the taste of the Jazz from the Heat's palate for good this season.

The only good thing about the Jazz was that they were ahead of the Lakers in the Western Conference standings, but with their loss to the Heat and the Lakers' win over the Clippers, the Jazz now trail them by half a game. Speaking of the Lakers, I watched their game against the Clippers and had one thought that I'd like to share...


From: @reservoirgod 
Sent: Dec 8, 2010 11:29p 
Pau Gasol plays like he wears Uggs #NBA 
sent via ÜberTwitter 
On Twitter: http://twitter.com/reservoirgod/status/12725427281862656

See you December 25th, Laker fans!


Unless referenced otherwise, original game data used for this post was taken from popcornmachine.netespn.com and nba.com.

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