Friday, August 13, 2010

Canadian Connection

The idea and data for this post have been gracefully donated by Andres Alvarez over at Nerdnumbers.

Let’s take a look at two mystery players let’s be unoriginal and call them “Player A” and “Player B”:

They seem remarkably identical in terms of production, don’t they? Player B was a little more consistent and offered two more wins and a better WP48, but the difference is quite small.

So what’s the big deal about this? The interesting thing is who these two players actually are. One of them is a former NBA MVP (guess which one). One of them is a former Toronto Raptor (guess which one). Give up? The answers are below.

“Player A” is Chris Bosh. “Player B” is Steve Nash. Bosh’s numbers are taken from his last four years in Toronto, while Nash’s numbers are from his last four years in Dallas (before he moved on to the Suns and won back-to-back MVP awards). This brings up several points in my mind:
  1. How amazing is Steve Nash? He was a pretty good player up until age 29, and then he really took off. The guy is 35 years old and still has a WP48 of around 0.300.
  2. How dumb is Mark Cuban for letting Nash leave? He decided that Nash was too risky to sign for $10 million at his age (30)...and then proceeded to sign Erick Dampier (then age 29) to a 7 year, $73 million contract in an effort to replace Nash’s production. Remember, Nash had just come off four years of production similar to Bosh's last four years in Toronto. Bryan Colangelo has certainly made his mistakes, but can you imagine BC walking away from the bargaining table at $10 million/year for four years?!?
  3. Bosh’s last four years were as good as the four years Nash had right before his first MVP award. Does Bosh have what it takes to improve to the degree that Nash did? Just for fun, let's compare Nash's number's with Bosh's:

If Bosh can improve on his production in Miami (which may be a distinct possibility, due to the impact that Lebron and Wade will have on his shooting frequency and efficiency), maybe Bosh's career will be able to approach the career of the greatest Canadian NBA player of all time.

If you want to see more about how great of a player Steve Nash has been over the course of his career, check out the work that Andres Alvarez has done over at Nerdnumbers.

 - Devin.


  1. I really like this post. Keep up the good work.

  2. Great to see this posted so fast Devin! I love that Cuban's argument hinges on Nash not being worth 70% of a max contract despite the fact he was twice as good as a normal PG. Also I hear that those are hard to replace.

  3. Wow, I didn't know Nash was that productive before he went to the Suns. He wasn't MVP productive, but WoW.