Stats & Info: Andrew Bynum

Does Bynum have skills Lakers will miss?

October, 29, 2012
Stephen Dunn/Getty ImagesAndrew Bynum (left) was traded to the 76ers in the offseason.
This is the third installment of a series called “Missed or Not Missed?”. The concept is simple -- we take a look at a few Western Conference teams and determine if the players they’ve lost will be missed or if the player they brought in will make them forget that loss.

On August 10, the Lakers decided to swap one center for another by bringing in Dwight Howard and shipping Andrew Bynum to the 76ers.

But will Howard help get the Lakers back to the promised land or will they regret letting Bynum go?

Better defender around the basket

Howard has the Defensive Player of the Year awards but Bynum was better at defending non post-up plays around the basket last season.

He gave up the lowest field-goal percentage (35 percent) and third-fewest points per play (.75) among the 93 players with at least 65 plays.

Howard allowed his opponents to shoot nearly 45 percent around the basket and gave up the 34th-most points per play.

Two great Lakers passers

When you think about Dwight Howard's various skills, the thought of him being a great passer likely doesn’t immediately come to mind.

Howard draws lots of attention and is often double-teamed in the post but proved he can get the ball to the spot-up shooter last season.

Only five players had more than 90 passes to spot-up shooters from the post last year. Howard led the way with 181 such plays. His teammates posted the second-highest points per play (1.09) and field goal percentage (40 percent).

Bynum’s teammates shot below 37 percent and averaged less than a point per play last season.
Stats & Info insights into this morning's top sports stories.

1. CLIPPERS MAKE HISTORIC COMEBACK: The Los Angeles Clippers defeated the Memphis Grizzlies, 99-98, in Game One of their First-Round series. The Clippers trailed by 21 points at the end of the third quarter. The win tied the shot-clock era playoff record for the largest deficit overcome at the end of the third quarter. (2002 Boston Celtics vs New Jersey Nets)

2. BYNUM RECORDS TRIPLE-DOUBLE IN WIN: Andrew Bynum recorded a triple-double (10 Pts, 13 Reb, 10 Blk) in the Los Angeles Lakers 103-88 win over the Denver Nuggets in Game One on Sunday. According to Elias, was the first triple-double by a center in an NBA playoff game since May 7, 1993, when David Robinson of the San Antonio Spurs (20 points, 17 rebounds, 11 assists) did it against the Portland Trail Blazers.

3. RONDO EJECTED, CELTICS DEJECTED: Rajon Rondo was ejected for bumping a referee during the fourth quarter of the Celtics 83-74 Game One loss to the Atlanta Hawks. NEXT LEVEL: If Rondo is suspended, the Celtics offense will likely take a hit. The Celtics averaged over seven points more per 100 possessions with Rondo on the floor this season compared to when he was off the floor or out.

4. RAYS ROMP RANGERS IN SERIES: The Tampa Bay Rays defeated the Texas Rangers, 5-2, taking two of three games in their weekend series against the defending AL champions. According to Elias, the Rangers had won each of their seven previous series this season, tying them for the second-longest streak of consecutive series wins to begin a season for a team that had gone to the World Series the previous year. The 1907 Chicago Cubs won their first 11 series and the 2003 San Francisco Giants won their first seven.

5. METS WIN A CLOSE ONE: The New York Mets defeated the Colorado Rockies, 6-5 in 11 innings. According to Elias, it was the second victory in franchise history in which the Mets allowed a pair of game-tying home runs in the 8th inning or later. The other was New York's classic 19-inning, 16-13 win at the Atlanta Braves on July 4, 1985.

Some NBA teams clutch in crunch time

April, 17, 2012
“Crunch Time” is defined as less than five minutes remaining in the fourth quarter or overtime with neither team ahead by more than five points. In these crucial situations, plus-minus is a very effective measure of team performance because scoring while keeping opponents off the board is the difference between a win and a loss. It’s not surprising that the top six teams in Crunch Time +/- this season have already locked up playoff spots (Los Angeles Lakers, Indiana Pacers, Atlanta Hawks, Orlando Magic, San Antonio Spurs and Chicago Bulls).

This can also shed light on just how important key players are to their franchise. For example, the Cleveland Cavaliers led the league in Crunch Time +/- three years in a row (2007-08 to 2009-10), but once LeBron James left for Miami the Cavaliers’ +/- plummeted. The Cavs averaged +113 with James during those three seasons, and +1 since.

- The Lakers have by far the best Crunch Time +/- this season (+79, the Pacers are second at +65). Pau Gasol (+78) has been their biggest star, followed closely by Andrew Bynum (+74). Kobe Bryant ranks third at +58.

- The Dallas Mavericks have had the biggest drop-off in Crunch Time performance, from a league-leading +117 last season to a paltry -16 this season.

- The Houston Rockets (+31) and Memphis Grizzlies (+28) are the best Crunch Time teams this season that have yet to lock up a playoff spot. The Los Angeles Clippers (-9) are the only playoff team with a negative +/-.

Statistical support for this story given by
Stats & Info insights into this morning's top sports stories

1. FLYERS SCORING IN BUNCHES: The Philadelphia Flyers continue to dominate the series against the Pittsburgh Penguins, winning Game 3 by a score of 8-4 to take a 3-0 series lead. Philadelphia has scored 20 goals in the series with 16 coming in the last two games. FROM ELIAS: The last team to score at least 16 goals in consecutive Stanley Cup Playoff games is Wayne Gretzky's Los Angeles Kings in 1993, who scored 18 goals (nine in each) in consecutive games against the Calgary Flames. The Flyers had never scored 16 in consecutive Stanley Cup Playoff games and the Penguins had never allowed 16 in consecutive Stanley Cup Playoff games.

Matt Kemp
2. KEMP AND DODGERS CONTINUE HOT START: Matt Kemp hit his sixth homerun of the season as the Los Angeles Dodgers beat the San Diego Padres 5-4. The Dodgers are 9-1 for the first time since 1981 (won the World Series that year) and Kemp has been a big reason why. He’s just the third player to hit six homeruns in the Dodgers first 10 games. FROM ELIAS: Kemp joins Willie Mays, Lou Brock, and Dante Bichette as the only players with at least six homeruns, 16 RBI and a .450 batting average through a team’s first 10 games since RBI became an official stat in 1920.

3. LAKERS RIDE BIG MEN TO WIN OVER DALLAS: Andrew Bynum and Pau Gasol each had a 20-point, 10-rebound game to lead the Lakers to an overtime win over the Mavericks. The Lakers are 4-1 without Kobe Bryant this season and swept the season-series with Dallas, winning all four games. FROM ELIAS: The Lakers are the first team since the 2002-03 Nets to sweep a regular-season series after being swept by the same team in the postseason the previous year.

4. PRESIDENTS' TROPHY WINNERS 1 LOSS FROM ELIMINATION: The Los Angeles Kings beat the top-seeded Vancouver Canucks 1-0 in Game 3 to take a 3-0 series lead. Since the NHL went to a best-of-seven format in the quarterfinals in the 1986-87 season, it’s the second time that an 8-seed has a 3-0 series lead over a 1-seed. The last time happened in 1993 when the Blues swept the top-seeded Chicago Blackhawks. As for the Canucks: They are the first team to finish the regular season with the best record and lose their first three games of its quarterfinal series according to Elias.

5. PANTHERS END PLAYOFF DROUGHT: FROM ELIAS: The Florida Panthers ended the longest playoff win drought in NHL history with their 4–2 victory against the New Jersey Devils on Sunday night. It was Florida’s first postseason win in two days short of 15 years, since a 3–0 victory over the Rangers on April 17, 1997 in the opening game of a first-round series. The Panthers obliterated the old NHL record for the longest stretch with a playoff win, which was just under 12 years by the Detroit Red Wings, between wins on April 26, 1966 and April 11, 1978.

Ivan Nova
6. ALL HE DOES IS WIN: Ivan Nova allowed four runs in six innings to get the win as the Yankees beat the Angels. FROM ELIAS: Nova has won his last 14 decisions, tying Whitey Ford and two others for the second-longest streak in New York Yankees history. Nova trails only Roger Clemens, who won 16 decisions in a row in 2001.

Stats & Info insights into this morning's top sports stories

1. TWO HAT TRICKS: The Philadelphia Flyers defeated the Pittsburgh Penguins, 8-5, to take a 2-0 lead in the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals. Claude Giroux had three goals and three assists to set a team record for most points in a playoff game. Rookie Sean Couturier also had three goals. The Flyers became the fourth team in the expansion era to have multiple hat tricks in the same playoff game.

2. TWO SHORTHANDED GOALS: The Los Angeles Kings defeated the top-seeded Vancouver Canucks, 4-2, to take a 2-0 lead in the Western Conference Quarterfinals. FROM ELIAS: Dustin Brown became the 13th player in NHL history to score a pair of shorthanded goals in a playoff game, but he is the first of those players to account for his team's first two goals in that manner.

Aaron Harang
3. HARANG MAKES HISTORY: The Los Angeles Dodgers defeated the San Diego Padres, 9-8, on Andre Ethier’s bases-loaded walk in the ninth inning. FROM ELIAS: After allowing a leadoff single, Dodgers starting pitcher Aaron Harang struck out nine straight batters, falling one shy of the MLB record of 10 set by Tom Seaver against the Padres in 1970. Three other pitchers had nine consecutive strikeouts in a game: Mickey Welch in 1884, Jake Peavy in 2007 and Ricky Nolasco in 2009.

4. 30 THEN 30: FROM ELIAS: Andrew Bynum scored a game-high 30 points and led the Kobe-less Los Angeles Lakers to a 103-97 victory over the Denver Nuggets. Bynum, who had 30 rebounds in the Lakers’ last game, at San Antonio on Wednesday, became the first NBA player with 30 rebounds in one game and 30 points in the next since Moses Malone had 32 rebounds (and also 38 points) on Feb. 11, 1982, and then scored 32 points in his next game, two days later.

Alex Rodriguez
5. A-ROD TIES THE KID: The New York Yankees defeated the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim, 5-0, in their home opener. Alex Rodriguez went 3-for-4, hitting his 630th career home run. He tied former teammate Ken Griffey Jr. for fifth on the all-time list. FROM ELIAS: A-Rod and Junior played 587 games as teammates with the Mariners from 1994 to 1999; when Rodriguez left Seattle following the 2000 season to sign as a free agent with the Rangers, he trailed Griffey by exactly 250 career homers, 398 to 148.

6. MISSING SUPERMAN: Orlando Magic center Dwight Howard has been diagnosed with a herniated disk in his lower back. There is no timetable for his return. This will certainly impact the Orlando defense moving forward. The Magic have allowed opponents to score 7.0 points per game more when Howard is not on the court this season.
Stats & Info insights into this morning's top sports stories

1. FLYERS COME BACK: The Philadelphia Flyers overcame a three-goal deficit in the first period to beat the Pittsburgh Penguins 4-3 in overtime. FROM ELIAS: Philadelphia became the first NHL team since 1996 to start the playoffs with a win in which it overcame a three-goal deficit; 16 years ago, the Capitals won 6-4, also at Pittsburgh, after they had trailed 4-1 late in the second period.

2. HELP ME RONDO: FROM ELIAS: Rajon Rondo posted 20 assists, 10 points and 10 rebounds in the Boston Celtics’ overtime win over the Atlanta Hawks. It was the fourth game in his NBA career (two this season, two last season) in which Rondo had a triple-double that featured at least 20 assists. That ties Magic Johnson for the most such games in the history of the NBA.

3. BYNUM CRASHES THE BOARDS: Andrew Bynum had 16 points and 30 rebounds as the Los Angeles Lakers beat the Spurs in San Antonio without Kobe Bryant. He is just the second player in the last 15 seasons to have a 30-rebound game. FROM ELIAS: Bynum became the fifth Lakers player to collect 30 rebounds in a game, joining George Mikan, Elgin Baylor, Wilt Chamberlain (who had 16 such games) and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. The last Lakers player with a 30-board game was Kareem, who had the second of his two 30-rebound games with the Lakers back in 1978.

Justin Verlander
4. VERLANDER FALLS APART LATE: After allowing just one hit and no runs through eight innings, Justin Verlander allowed four runs in the ninth inning in a 4-2 loss to the Tampa Bay Rays. It was the Detroit Tigers first loss of the season. The reigning AL Cy Young and MVP Award winner has allowed just four runs in 16 1/3 innings but is 0-1 this season. FROM ELIAS: Verlander became only the second starting pitcher in major-league history to fail to earn a win in either of his first two starts of a season after having tossed shutout ball over the first eight innings of each game. The only other pitcher to endure such hard luck was Minnesota’s Pete Redfern in 1980.

5. RONALDO HITS 40: Cristiano Ronaldo scored three goals in a 4-1 Real Madrid win. He has 40 goals this season, tying his own record for the most goals in a single season in La Liga history. He is one goal ahead of Lionel Messi who has 39.
Stats & Info insights into this morning's top sports stories

David Freese
1. FREESE PICKS UP WHERE HE LEFT OFF: The St. Louis Cardinals defeated the Miami Marlins 4-1 in the first regular-season game at Marlins Park. FROM ELIAS: David Freese had three hits with two RBI. The only other reigning World Series MVP to have at least three hits and two RBI in his team's season opener was Pete Rose, who had three hits and two RBI for the Reds in their 1976 opener.

2. LeBRON ON FIRE: In a potential NBA Finals preview, the Miami Heat defeated the Oklahoma City Thunder, 98-93. LeBron James scored 34 points. NEXT LEVEL: James accounted for 59.2 percent of the Heat’s points (58 of 98), his highest percentage in any game this season.

3. DYNAMIC DUO: The Los Angeles Lakers defeated the Los Angeles Clippers, 113-108. Andrew Bynum scored a game-high 36 points, and Kobe Bryant added 31. FROM ELIAS: Since 1990, the only other pair of Lakers teammates to each score 30 or more points and make at least 65 percent of their shots in one game was Bryant (35 points, 11-16) and Shaquille O'Neal (31 points, 15-23) against Golden State on Feb. 18, 2004.

4. SPURS SPREAD THE WEALTH: FROM ELIAS: The San Antonio Spurs defeated the Boston Celtics despite no San Antonio player scoring 15 points. (Danny Green led the team with 14 points.) It was the fifth win in the Spurs' NBA history in which they didn't have a player score 15 points, and their first since March 27, 2004 against Phoenix.

5. MASTERS TEES OFF: The Masters Tournament begins on Thursday, and since the Augusta National Golf Club added length in 2006, the Elias Sports Bureau says that no champion has finished the first round outside of the top seven on the leaderboard.