FanPost

Live-Ball Turnover Rates


This data is only through game 22 and won't include tonight's MIA game.

All data is from https://stats.nba.com

This data breaks down the distinction between dead-ball and live-ball turnovers. Dead-ball turnovers are turnovers that result in a stoppage and the other team having to in-bound the ball. Examples include: Illegal screens, traveling calls, offensive charge fouls, passing out-of-bounds, etc. As far as game-impact goes, dead-ball turnovers are roughly equivalent to that of a missed shot that bounces over the backboard.

Live-ball turnovers (i.e., steals) are by far more damaging and critical to game outcome. Opposing teams score at very high efficiency off live turnovers as these are typically transition baskets.

Let's start by simply looking at some basic totals:

Player           GP  Touches/gm	TO  live-ball-TO
Jayson Tatum     21    72.8	48	24
Jaylen Brown.    20    63.3	66	23
Marcus Smart     20    60.5	43	20
Malcom Brogdon   18    51.3	36	26
Al Horford       18    50.4	13	7
Derrick White    22    40.5	19	8
Grant Williams   21    31.3	17	7
Payton Pritchard 22    21.5	11	4
Sam Hauser.      22    19.2	7	5
Blake Griffin     8    18.4	5	0
Luke Kornet      17    15.5	8	1
Noah Vonleh      15    12.3	10	2

Now, let's look at some ratios:

Player          TO/gm TO/touch live-ball/gm live-ball/touch live-ball/TO
Jayson Tatum     2.3   3.2%       1.14       1.57%            50.00%
Jaylen Brown     3.3   5.2%       1.15       1.82%            34.85%
Marcus Smart     2.2   3.6%       1.00       1.65%            46.51%
Malcom Brogdon   2.0   3.9%       1.44       2.82%            72.22%
Al Horford       0.7   1.4%       0.39       0.77%            53.85%
Derrick White    0.9   2.2%       0.36       0.90%            42.11%
Grant Williams   0.8   2.6%       0.33       1.06%            41.18%
Payton Pritchard 0.8   3.7%       0.18       0.85%            36.36%
Sam Hauser       0.3   1.6%       0.23       1.18%            71.43%
Blake Griffin    0.6   3.3%       0.00       0.00%             0.00%
Luke Kornet      0.5   3.2%       0.06       0.38%            12.50%
Noah Vonleh      0.7   5.7%       0.13       1.08%            20.00%

Some points of interest jump out here.

  • Jayson and Jaylen have almost identical per-game rates of live-ball TOs, despite their disparity in overall TO counts. This is because a larger percentage of Jaylen's TOs are dead-ball turnovers, often due to offensive-foul and traveling calls. Jayson has dramatically reduced his PF rate this year and whether that's a function of form or 'getting star calls', it's the largest reason for his reduced overall TO rate.
  • I've normalized per 100 touches of the ball. I do not like using AST/TO or pass/TO ratios because the majority of TOs have absolutely nothing to do with passing. When normalized per touch of the ball, Malcom seems to be the biggest victim of theft by opponents.
  • For our big guys, like Blake, Luke & Noah, only a tiny fraction of their TOs are 'live'. Most are away from the ball entirely. Yet another reason AST/TO is such a useless stat.

Thoughts and comments?

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