The draft is done. Summer league is history. And free agency has lost all its steam. Welcome to the dog days of the NBA calendar.
That said, there's still plenty left to talk about, especially with a team counting on the emergence of young talent and the successful integration of more than a handful of new faces. Among the most popular topics has been the likely impact of Corey Maggette, who despite a decade-long resume as an efficient scorer still seems like a major x-factor. Will he start? Will he fit in? Will he defend...maybe a little bit? Everyone has their opinions, but I figured a good place to start would be with the numbers.
7.9 fta/g. Fourth among all SFs in free throw attempts per game, trailing only Kevin Durant, LeBron James and Carmelo Anthony.
51.6% fg%. Only Nicolas Batum (51.9%) shot better from the field in 09/10 among small forwards.
66.2% at rim. Maggette's driving ability meant a significant chunk of his shots came at the rim, where he finished at a good clip,12th among all small forwards.
9.5% blocked rate. Despite scoring so effectively around the cup, Maggette also was blocked at the fourth-highest rate among SFs--on nearly 10% of his shots. Ironically, Luc Mbah a Moute and Chris Douglas-Roberts rank 2-3.
For Maggette it's actually somewhat understandable given a) he took so many shots among the trees and b) was usually at least a few inches smaller than the PFs typically defending him. They always say if you're a shot blocker you're bound to get dunked on, and if you're an inside scorer you're bound to get blocked a fair bit. In case you're curious, Gerald Wallace is #1 and Carmelo Anthony is also in the top ten.
27 charges taken. Maggette knows how to draw charges, ranking fourth among small forwards in charges taken.
4 blocks. No one's ever accused Maggette of being an intense defender, but it's still amazing that a player with his body managed just four blocks all season. No small forward who played 20 games and averaged 20 mpg had fewer. To put that in perspective, Luke Ridnour blocked seven shots last season and Brandon Jennings managed four in the playoffs alone.
20.40 PER. Fourth among all small forwards in PER, ahead of such notable names as Danny Granger, Paul Pierce, and Gerald Wallace.
10.0% rebound rate. 17th among 62 qualifying small forwards, just ahead of Carlos Delfino. Maggette has long been a good rebounder for his size, but his numbers might also be inflated somewhat by playing mostly as a PF on a team devoid of rebounders.
61.5% true shooting. Getting tons of free throws and shooting a high percentage from the field translated into the second-best true shooting percentage among all small forwards.
31% of Warrior PF minutes. Despite standing just 6'6", Maggette got most of his minutes last year at power forward for Don Nelson's Warriors. He also got 18% of available small forward minutes and 1% of center minutes, with less than 1% of the minutes at off guard. It was even more pronounced in 08/09, when he tallied 27% of minutes at PF and just 10% at SF. You have to go back to his last year with the Clips (07/08) to find his last season as a full-time SF.
In other words, Maggette has plenty of experience in small ball units and his stats from the previous two season could be a bit deceiving given the Bucks will likely deploy him in a more traditional manner. For instance, while his scoring efficiency, free throw rates, and per-minute scoring rates have always been high, he had never shot close to 50% before last season.
Much has also been made of Maggette's terrible +/- differential with the Warriors, particularly on defense. But the Bucks will hope his last season as a small forward is more indicative of his impact on the scoreboard, as the (admittedly terrible) Clips were 4.8 pts/100 better on offense and allowed 3.3 pts/100 less on defense. Given he's competing for minutes with plus defenders like Luc Mbah a Moute and Carlos Delfino, I don't expect the Bucks to be better defensively with Maggette on the floor, but that's OK as long as he's scoring efficiently and not hemorrhaging points on the other end.
1.01 PPP in isolation. Maggette was 17th among all players in points per possession in isolation situations, accounting for a whopping 27% of his total possessions. He shots 46.4% and drew a foul on 20.8% of all iso plays. In comparison, Salmons was even more iso-dependent with the Bucks, getting 31% of his plays out of isolation, shooting 41.3% and scoring 1.01 PPP.
0.91 PPP in post. Despite the amount of time he spent at the 4, Maggette still managed solid efficiency out of the post, ranking 56th in the league in post PPP. Salmons was much better (1.17 PPP) but had only 23 plays out of the post compared to Maggette's 179.
1.17 PPP in P&R. Because of all that time at PF, Maggette got a fair number of plays (52) as a screener in P&R. It worked pretty well, too, as he was 27th in the league in PPP and shot 54.1%. He got less than half as many plays out of P&R situations where he was the ball-handler.
1.03 PPP defensively. Maggette's defensive numbers are perhaps (not surprisingly) rather terrible. His overall points allowed per possession rank 414th league-wide and he's bad in pretty much every category. I only have his 09/10 data, so it's hard to say whether any of it is attributable to the fact that he was playing as an undersized PF, but it's not like he had a good rep previously either. For reference, Salmons allowed 0.90 PPP with the Bucks, good for 203rd in the league.