It has been an up and down season so far and the Jazz are still rounding into shape. Here are a couple of interesting statistical trends I’ve been keeping an eye on.
- What a difference one player makes. With Randy Foye in the starting lineup, the Jazz have a -6.3 net rating (points scored per 100 possessions – points allowed per 100), a mark that would be 26th in the league. Swap Gordon Hayward for Foye at and the the net rating jumps to only -0.9 which would be 17th the league (the Jazz currently are 15th). This is mostly because of defense. The offense actually gets a half point worse when you make the aforementioned swap, but the defense improves by nearly six points per 100 possessions. The undersized Foye also hurts rebounding the with Hayward in instead of him the total rebounding rate jumps from 47.3% to 54%, a mark that would be first in the league.
- Jamaal Tinsley has helped on offense, hurt on defense. Swap Tinsley for Williams in the first starting lineup (with Foye, not Hayward), and the offensive rating takes a huge leap, but the defensive rating takes that same leap (remember, a high defensive rating is bad). Overall, the net rating is around two points better, but still an ugly -4.6.
- How confusing can this be to Ty Corbin: play DeMarre Carrol more. It is really that simple. The offense is better with him on the court, the defense is better with him on the court, and the rebounding is better with him on the court. This isn’t some small sample size fluke either, he has played over 400 minutes. The Jazz’s 7.6 net rating with him playing would place 4th in the league and would be a hair behind the Knicks for third. The rebounding rate would lead the league and the free throw rate would be third. More DMC minutes would be a nice late Christmas present.
- It’s no secret that Enes Kanter/Derrick Favors is the big man duo of the future. So how has this two man lineup fared thus far? The results have been pretty much expected. Excellent defense, but some struggles on offense (with the defense slightly outweighing the offense). This is mostly due to neither player being able to shoot which constricts the offense’s spacing. Because of this I’m in favor (pun not intended) of playing these two big man separately (until a trade). That way, there will always be an offensively skilled big on the floor.