Friday, April 18, 2008

Jazz/Celtics Finals?

John Hollinger, ESPN's stats dude thinks so. It is a good article with statistical evidence. I'm a big stats guy, more so in baseball than in basketball but I like basketball deep stats too. Some things Hollinger says:

Utah has the best chance of coming out of the west at 31 percent.

Jazz played amazingly well over the last fourth of the season. They had an offensive efficiency rating of 116.0, which over a full season would have made them easily the best offensive team of all time.

Jazz were 37-12 after Jan. 1. They had tons of blowout wins over quality teams. Here are some blowout wins this season:

Beat Boston by 18 at their place, the Celtics' worst loss of the season.

Beat New Orleans by 28 and 22, two of Hornets worst losses of season.

Beat San Antonio by 26, Spurs worst loss of season.

Beat Lakers by 24, Lakers worst loss of season.

Beat Phoenix by 22.

Beat Denver by 27 two times.

He points out Utah won 18 games by more than 20 points. The only loss by 20 points for the Jazz was the last game against the Spurs. But can you really think that last game matters, Deron Williams was injured and the Jazz probably lost on purpose, not wanting to face the Spurs in round 1.

Great article by Hollinger, nice to see the Jazz get some love from ESPN. It is about time.

By the way he predicts the Jazz to beat the Rockets in 6, the Lakers in 6, the Hornets in 6, and finally losing to Boston in 6 in the Finals.

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