Thursday, October 17, 2013

LeBron James: Can He Shoot the HEAT to 72 Wins?



Miami Herald beat reporter Joe Goodman Jr. asked whether the Miami HEAT could win 72 games if LeBron James made 60% of his shots this season. Let's see what the numbers have to say...

This article uses the Win Score and Estimated Wins Produced statistics created by sports economist David Berri. Players with an average Win Score per 48 minutes for their position increase a team's chance of winning 10% by producing 0.100 Estimated Wins per 48 minutes (Est.WP48). See the HEAT Produced Page for more information.

LeBron made 56.5% of his shots last season and produced an estimated 20.8 wins for a HEAT team that won 66 games. The spreadsheet below lists the estimated wins LeBron would produce if he made a higher percentage of his shots.



If LeBron made 60% of his shots last season and took the same amount of 3-pointers, then he would have produced an estimated 3 more wins for the HEAT. That would've still left the team 3 wins short of 72.

If LeBron made 60% of his shots from the floor and 80% of his free throws, then he would have produced an estimated 4 more wins for the HEAT. That would've left the team 2 wins short of 72.

LeBron needed to make 63% of his shots and 80% of his free throws last season to produce an estimated 6 more wins for the HEAT to win 72 games last season.

Without Mike Miller, who produced an estimated 2-3 wins for the HEAT last season, LeBron would probably need to make 65% of his shots or more along with 80% of his free throws to shoot the HEAT to 72 wins this season.

That's not gonna happen. The HEAT missed their opportunity to break the 1996 Bulls' 72-win record.

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