This season, many fans have gotten on BBD's case because of the number of times he's gotten his shot attempts blocked. The question is, is this a problem, and if it is, is there reason to think that it will continue to be a problem?
For comparison sake, I looked at BBD's 2009-10 season next to the seasons of other well-known post players. The results are included below:
|Player||eFG% From Inside||Percent Blocked (Inside)|
|Carl Landry (Hou)||.675||17%|
|Carl Landry (Sac)||.656||16%|
|Leon Powe ('08-'09)||.596||12%|
Two things stick out from the chart above: BBD finishes the lowest percentage of his inside shots of any player listed above, and he gets his shot blocked the most. Obviously, there's some sort of correlation there; it's expected that BBD would finish at a higher percentage if his shots weren't blocked, as at least some of those blocked shots would go in.
It seems clear that, all other things being equal, a reduction in the number of BBD's shots that are blocked would be a good thing. Is there hope for the future? BBD's track record suggests that there may be some reason for optimism going forward:
|Big Baby's performance||2007-2008||2008-2009||2009-2010|
|Percent of Shots from Inside||71%||40%||58%|
|eFG% on Inside Shots||.554||.559||.543|
|Percent of Inside Shots Blocked||15%||12%||25%|
In terms of BBD's performance to date, this year sticks out as a bit of an anomaly, as he hadn't gotten over 15% of his shots blocked in prior seasons. This 15% figure would put him in line with many of the players above (although it must be noted that his "finish percentage" has still been historically below his rivals.)
The good news is that since this hasn't been a huge issue in the past, it's possible that it's an aberration which will regress to historical norms. On the other hand, it could be evidence that BBD's opponents have adjusted to him, or that BBD has changed his inside game from previous years to be more of a straight up-and-down player.
So, what's the conclusion? It's mixed. BBD seems to be a less efficient player than many of his peers, and his inside efficiency is not necessarily trending in the right direction. At the same time, the percentage of shots blocked is so outside BBD's historical norms that it's very possible that he can -- and will -- improve in this area. Assuming that he does (by refining his post moves, adding more pump fakes, passing when in poor position, etc.), there's no reason to assume that BBD can't get more shots in the vicinity of the basket, and thus improve his interior scoring.