Stats & Info: Joakim Noah

Bulls have Heat's number behind Noah

March, 9, 2014
Mar 9

Jonathan Daniel/Getty ImagesJoakim Noah filled up the stat sheet in the Bulls' win against the Heat.
The Chicago Bulls continued their recent trend of success against the Miami Heat with a 95-88 overtime win on Sunday afternoon.

With the win, the Bulls improved to 9-6 in the regular season against the Heat since Miami acquired LeBron James and Chris Bosh (starting with the 2010-11 season). That’s tied with the Memphis Grizzlies for the best regular-season record against the Heat in that span.

The Bulls have been even better at home, going 7-1 in their regular season home matchups with the Heat in that time.

Joakim Noah filled up the stat sheet for Chicago, finishing with 20 points, 12 rebounds, seven assists and five blocks. He’s the first Bulls player to have at least 20 points, 10 rebounds, five assists and five blocks in a game since Scottie Pippen pulled it off in 1995.

Noah is one of just three players to have at least 20 points, 12 rebounds, seven assists and five blocks in a game this season. The others to do so (Josh Smith and Dwight Howard) both did it against the Philadelphia 76ers.

For the Heat, LeBron James continued his recent relative struggles, scoring 23 points on 8-of-23 shooting from the field. Since scoring a career-high 61 points last Monday against the Charlotte Bobcats, James has totaled 58 points in his last three games (19.3 points per game).

His shooting has especially suffered from outside. In the past three games, James has shot 3-of-27 (11 percent) from outside the paint, including 2-of-10 in Sunday’s loss.

James also failed to get to the free-throw line in the loss. It’s the first time since Dec. 2, 2009 that he’s failed to attempt a free throw in a game, snapping a streak of 332 consecutive games.

Chicago’s Jimmy Butler was one of the most valuable Bulls on the day for the job he did defending James. James finished with more turnovers (three) than field goals (two) when defended by Butler in Sunday’s game, finishing with 4 points on 2-for-11 shooting.

Similar styles collide tonight in Chicago

March, 7, 2014
Mar 7
The Memphis Grizzlies will be in the Windy City to face the Chicago Bulls tonight at 7 p.m. ET on ESPN. Both of these teams have been two of the NBA’s best since the calendar flipped to 2014.

The Bulls are 22-9 since January 1, the second-best record in the Eastern Conference. The Grizzlies are 21-9 in 2014, the third-best mark in the Western Conference.

These two squads rely heavily on defense and the play of their centers.

Marc Gasol's return fuels Memphis
A big reason why the Grizzlies had to dig itself out of a hole was because they were without Marc Gasol for much of the first half of the season.

Gasol missed 23 straight games spanning Nov. 25 to Jan. 12 and the Grizzlies went just 10-13 over that stretch. With him this season they’ve posted a 24-13 record.

Also his impact on the defensive end has been felt. Opponents are averaging five points fewer per game when Gasol is in the lineup.

Joakim Noah the facilitator

Joakim Noah is currently leading the Bulls in total assists this season. The last time a center led his team in total assists for a season was David Robinson (1993-94).

Noah’s distribution has had a tremendous impact on the team’s offensive performance. When Noah sits, the Bulls score just 93.9 points per 100 possessions. For perspective the 76ers have a better offensive efficiency than that.

Quick Hitters
* Both of these teams are strong on the glass – the Bulls rank second in rebound percentage while the Grizzlies are sixth. Not surprisingly, the Grizzlies give up the fewest second-chance points this season (11.5) while the Bulls yield the second-fewest (11.6).

* Noah is averaging a career-high 4.8 assists this season, the most among centers. Second-most among centers in assists per game is Gasol with 3.7.

* The Bulls were 14-18 when they traded Luol Deng to the Cavaliers but have gone 20-9 since.

* Tom Thibodeau has gone with Taj Gibson over Carlos Boozer in the fourth quarter this season. Dating back to Feb. 1, Boozer has played in just three fourth quarters for a total of 11 minutes.

Mike DiNovo/USA TODAY SportsJoakim Noah's fifth career triple-double helped the Bulls beat the Knicks.
Joakim Noah recorded his fifth career triple-double, leading Los Bulls to a 109-90 win over Nueva York on Sunday. Michael Jordan (28) and Scottie Pippen (15) are the only players in Bulls history with more triple-doubles than Noah.

Some quick-hitters on Noah the assister:

• He had 10 assists in the first half, the first time he’s ever had double-digit assists in a single half, on the way to a career-high 14. According to the Elias Sports Bureau, that’s the most assists by a center since Sam Lacey had 14 for the Kansas City Kings on December 6, 1978.

• Noah leads the Bulls this season with 269 assists. Elias tells us the last center to lead his team in total assists in a season was David Robinson (381 in 1993-94).

• He’s averaging 4.7 assists per game this season, which would be the most by a center since Brad Miller averaged 4.7 a game for the Kings in the 2005-06 season.

• For Noah, it's his fourth double-digit assist game in his past 11 games. He had 3 such games in his first 442 career games. And it’s his second triple-double in his past 9 games, after posting just three in his first 444 career games.

• He’s just the second player this season to have at least a dozen points, rebounds and assists in a game, joining Stephen Curry.

Knicks are struggling
The Knicks have allowed triple-doubles in consecutive games, after Curry had one against them on Friday.

According to Elias, it's the fourth time ever the Knicks have allowed triple-doubles in consecutive games and the first time since 1965-66 when Wilt Chamberlain had a pair of them in back-to-back games.

Sunday’s game
The Bulls committed just three turnovers, a franchise record and the fewest by any team in a game this season.

They improve to 21-8 since January 1, the second-best record in the NBA in that span, and they’re tied with the Toronto Raptors, who currently hold the third seed in the Eastern Conference.

The Knicks have lost six straight and 12 of their past 14 games, allowing nearly 115 points per game during the losing streak.

The Knicks attempted fewer shots in the paint against the Bulls than in any game this season. They were 10-for-19, which also tied the fewest made shots in the paint this season.

Of their 79 field goal attempts Sunday, 42 of them were pull-up jumpers with an average shot distance of 18.4 feet from the basket. Overall, the Knicks' average shot distance was 16.5 feet, which is almost three feet farther away than their season average.

Big night for big men in NBA

January, 21, 2014
Jan 21

AP Photo/Carlos OsorioDeAndre Jordan was one of many big men to put up big numbers on Monday.
Big men stole the show Monday night, as five players went for 15 points and 20 rebounds.

Just how rare is that? According to the Elias Sports Bureau, it’s the first time since Feb. 24, 1978, that five players had at least 15 points and 20 rebounds on the same day. The players who did it that day were Moses Malone, Elvin Hayes, Wes Unseld, Artis Gilmore and Swen Nater -- the first four of whom are in the Hall of Fame.

Let’s look at the five “15-20” performances from Monday.

LaMarcus Aldridge
LaMarcus Aldridge, Portland Trail Blazers
27 points, 20 rebounds, 3 assists, 2 steals

This was the third time this season Aldridge has had at least 25 points and 20 rebounds in a game. That’s as many as the rest of the NBA combined, and no player has done it more than once.

Monday was Portland’s 41st game of the season, marking its halfway point. In the past 25 years, the only players with more 25-20 games in the first half of a season are Hakeem Olajuwon, Shaquille O’Neal, Kevin Garnett and Dwight Howard.

Zach Randolph, Memphis Grizzlies
23 points, 20 rebounds, 10-19 FG, 3 assists

Randolph had his first 20-20 game of the season, rebounding after two poor performances. He had more points and rebounds than in his two previous games combined. Randolph was a beast on the offensive glass, scoring 10 points off putbacks. He came into Monday averaging 2.4 PPG on putbacks this season. It was his third career game with at least 20 points, 10 offensive rebounds and 10 defensive rebounds, most among all active players.

Joakim Noah
Joakim Noah, Chicago Bulls
17 points, 21 rebounds, 6 assists

Noah became the first NBA player this season to record at least 15 points, 20 rebounds and 5 assists in a game. It’s his second career game reaching those thresholds, having also done it last season. Prior to Noah, no Bulls player had done it since Charles Oakley in 1986-87.

It’s also his 13th straight game with double-digit rebounds, the longest streak by a Bull since Tyson Chandler did it in 13 straight in 2005-06.

DeAndre Jordan, Los Angeles Clippers
16 points, 21 rebounds, 4 blocks, 8-11 FG

Jordan continues to own the boards, recording his 20th straight game with at least 10 rebounds, the NBA’s longest active streak. When it comes to hitting the glass, Jordan has elevated his consistency. He has four separate streaks this season in which he recorded double-digit rebounds in four or more straight games. He only had one such streak in his first five NBA seasons.

Anderson Varejaoe
Anderson Varejao, Cleveland Cavaliers
18 points, 21 rebounds, 4 assists

The Cavaliers lost by five but don’t blame Varejao as Cleveland outscored Dallas by 12 points with Varejao on the floor. This was the third time over the last three seasons the Cavaliers lost a game in which Varejao had at least 15 points and 20 rebounds. The only other player with as many such games in a losing effort over that time span is Nikola Vucevic.

Honorable Mention:
Anthony Davis: 27 points, 10 rebounds, 4 blocks, 4 steals
First player 20 or younger to hit those numbers in a single game (according to the Elias Sports Bureau)

Pau Gasol: 20 points, 19 rebounds, 5 blocks
First Lakers player to hit those numbers in a loss since Shaquille O’Neal in 1998-99

Al Jefferson: 22 points, 19 rebounds, 7 assists
First player in Bobcats history to hit those numbers in a single game

How They Got Here: Seven All-Star Newbies

January, 31, 2013

David Dow/NBAE/Getty ImagesKyrie Irving and Jrue Holiday will join forces in their first All-Star games
A look at the seven players selected to their first All-Star team this season:

James Harden becomes the first Houston Rockets All-Star since Yao Ming in 2011. Harden ranks fifth in the NBA, averaging a career-high 25.9 points this season. His scoring has increased by 9.1 points per game from last season, the highest increase among all players from last season to this season.

The NBA’s reigning Sixth Man of the Year award winner has been one of the best pick and roll ball handlers this season. Among the 107 players with at least 50 such plays, Harden ranks second in the NBA, averaging 1.03 points per play.

After playing just five games during an injury-plagued 2011-12 season, Brook Lopez makes his first All-Star team in his fifth NBA season. Lopez averages an NBA-high 18.6 points among centers this season.

According to the Hollinger PER (Player Efficiency Rating) rankings, Lopez ranks fourth in the NBA with a mark of 25.4. Only LeBron James (30.3), Kevin Durant (29.1) and Chris Paul (26.1) have recorded a higher PER this season.

In his second NBA season, Kyrie Irving becomes the first Cleveland Cavaliers All-Star since LeBron James in 2010. According to the Elias Sports Bureau, Irving will be the sixth-youngest player in NBA history to play in an All-Star Game at 20 years and 331 days old on February 17.

After winning Rookie of the Year last season, Irving has blossomed into one of the best guards in the NBA this season. He ranks fourth among point guards with a 22.5 PER.

Jrue Holiday becomes the second member of the Philadelphia 76ers in as many seasons to earn his first All-Star selection (Andre Iguodala, 2012). Holiday is averaging career highs in points (19.4), assists (8.9), field goal percentage (46.1) and rebounds (4.1). He and Russell Westbrook are the only two players averaging at least 19 points and eight assists this season.

Holiday has assisted 40 percent of his teammates’ field goals when he’s been on the court this season. That assist percentage ranks fifth in the NBA.

Paul George leads the Indiana Pacers in scoring, averaging a career-high 17.4 points this season. Despite his emergence on offense, George has made his biggest impact on defense. George ranks second in the NBA with 3.5 defensive win shares according to Basketball-Reference. Defensive win shares estimates the number of wins contributed by a player due to his defense.

Joakim Noah is one of two Chicago Bulls selected as All-Star reserves (Luol Deng). Noah is averaging career highs in points (12.1), rebounds (11.3), and assists (4.2), which leads all centers. Noah has recorded at least 10 points, 10 rebounds and five assists in 11 games this season. Only LeBron James has recorded more such games with 13.

Noah has anchored a Bulls defense which ranks third in defensive efficiency, allowing just 97.5 points per 100 possessions this season. He leads the NBA in defensive win shares with 3.7 and ranks eighth in blocks with 2.1 per game.

In his 12th NBA season, Tyson Chandler was finally selected to his first All-Star team. The reigning Defensive Player of the Year is averaging a career-high 11.9 points and 10.6 rebounds this season. Chandler leads the New York Knicks with 17 double-double and is one of just nine players averaging at least 10 points and 10 rebounds this season.

Chandler leads the NBA with a 70.6 true shooting percentage this season. True shooting percentage measures a player’s shooting efficiency taking into account two-point field goals, three-point field goals and free throws, a category Chandler has led in each of the previous two seasons.