So your old buddy Me, the Captain of the Sun-N-Gun Sailing Ship, is something of an occasional dabbler in something called “Advanced Stats.” Basically, these “stat geeks” look at the game through a slightly different lens. Instead of looking at it through super-dark sunglasses even when they’re inside like cool people do, they look at it through ridiculously thick coke-bottle glasses. Oh, nerds.
Anyway, I think it’s true that just using per-game stats really prevents seeing the whole picture, and it’s more important to start talking about per-40-minute stats or PER or whatever. But one thing I am not is a mathemagician. So once they start making their nerdly way into things with names like TOV% (which is Hebrew-related, I believe) and Ortg and Drtg (who I believe are twin brothers, Orangutan and Derangutan), I get a little lost. I’m working on it. But the statistical revolution is much more of a thing in baseball than it is in basketball, so us non-mathers can just stick to this game, right? Right.
Anyway, that was a really long introduction to me saying this: Over the last couple games, the Suns’ starters have all been in the plus at the end of the game, while every bench player has had a minus next to his name. Now, in last week’s game against the Hawks, every starter but Richardson was in the negative for the evening, and the bench kicked ass (and while we’re on the subject of that game, was it really the defensive struggle everyone made it out to be, or did both teams just shoot like shit and play a crap game? I vote for the latter), so it’s not like this is every game. But it says to me that the Suns bench has been struggling…maybe just a little…but still…it’s interesting, right? I know about small sample sizes and all that nonsense, so I’m not declaring the bench craptastic. I’m just saying it’s maybe something to keep an eye on (although of course if the starters keep playing the way they have, the bench doesn’t matter quite as much, do they?
Of course, what the hell do I know? I already told you I don’t know anything about anything.