Stats & Info: Kevin Martin

Kevin Martin is super efficient

November, 21, 2012
11/21/12
11:33
AM ET
Layne Murdoch Jr./NBAE/Getty ImagesKevin Martin’s offensive efficiency this season is off the charts.
Kevin Martin has been the most efficient scorer in the NBA this season. Martin leads the league in points per play of the 137 players with at least 100 plays, according to Synergy Sports.

Another way to prove Martin has been the most efficient scorer in the NBA this season is his true shooting percentage, a measure of shooting efficiency that takes into account field goals, 3-pointers and free throws. In that regard, Martin ranks first in the league among players with at least 250 minutes.

WHY HAS MARTIN BEEN SO EFFICIENT?

He doesn’t have to create his own offense as often this season.

Martin is playing off the ball more this season alongside Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook, as compared to last season when he had the ball in his hands more often. His usage percentage -– an estimate of the percentage of team plays used by a player while he’s on the floor -- is 22.3, his lowest since 2005-06, his sophomore campaign with the Sacramento Kings.

Martin is second in the NBA this season in catch-and-shoot points (behind O.J. Mayo). He’s shooting 52.1 percent on catch-and-shoot jumpers and has a 75 effective field-goal percentage on those shots.

Now that he isn’t the focal point of his team’s offense, Martin is able to let his offense come to him. As a result, his shooting numbers have blossomed in Oklahoma City.

In 2011-12, Martin shot just 34.9 percent on catch-and-shoot jumpers, which ranked 134th of the 175 players with at least 100 catch-and-shoot jumpers. Catch-and-shoot accounted for 37.5 percent of his jump shots last season, while it accounts for 51.1 percent this season.

Need more evidence that Martin isn’t nearly as ball-dominant anymore? This season, 31.4 percent of his plays are spot-up, as compared to 19.3 percent last season. Isolation accounted for 22.4 percent of his plays last season, while that number is down to 17.9 percent this season.

THUNDER ARE BETTER WITH MARTIN

The Thunder have been a much better team with Martin on the court. They're scoring 19.9 more points per 48 minutes than they are with Martin on the bench. They're shooting better, especially from beyond the arc, and getting to the free-throw line more than twice as often with Martin on the floor.

How impressive is Martin’s season thus far? Let’s put it in perspective:

• Only one player in NBA history has had a true shooting percentage higher than Martin’s current 70.2 percentage (Tyson Chandler – 70.8 last season).

• Martin currently averages 17.6 points per game with a 48.7 field-goal percentage and 53.6 3-point percentage. Nobody in NBA history has finished a season with those numbers. Detlef Schrempf (in 1994-95) is the only player to average at least 15 points per game with a 45 field-goal percentage and 50 3-point percentage.

• Thus far, Martin has a career high in field-goal percentage, 3-point percentage, free-throw percentage and offensive rating this season.

If Martin continues on this pace of super offensive efficiency, the Thunder won’t regret trading Harden for him.


Statistical support for this story from NBA.com

Did OKC make mistake by trading Harden?

November, 7, 2012
11/07/12
5:42
PM ET
Rick Osentoski/US PresswireJames Harden is leading the NBA in scoring this season.
James Harden is making many people think the Oklahoma City Thunder made a bad decision by trading him - and rightfully so.

Harden, who is playing 10.3 more minutes per game this season compared to last, leads the league in scoring with 35.3 points per game.

But perhaps the trade will end up being a win-win for both the Houston Rockets and Thunder - at least for this season as Martin is in the last year of his contract. Through four games - admittedly, a very small sample size - Martin is averaging 19.3 points per game, a 2.5 point increase over what Harden put up last season in an OKC uniform.

Martin scored 15 points last night in just 22 minutes of action. He's making more than three 3-pointers per game while shooting nearly 62 percent from behind the arc. It's also noteworthy that Jeremy Lamb - the other key piece in the trade along with draft picks - has scored six points in just seven total minutes this season.

Among the 96 players that have logged at least 100 minutes on the court this season, Harden and Martin rank first and tied for seventh, respectively, in points per 48 minutes. Russell Westbrook is averaging 28.9 points per 48 minutes while Kevin Durant is averaging 25.7.

Harden has 106 points through three games, the second-most points through the first three team games of a season in Rockets franchise history (Moses Malone had 107 points through three games in 1981).

Perhaps the craziest part of Harden's start is that we should have seen it coming. Last year in Oklahoma City, Harden averaged nearly 35 points per 40 minutes when he was not sharing the floor with Durant. This season, Harden’s per game numbers are eerily similar to his per 40 minute averages with Durant off the floor last season.

Harden is the first player with at least 106 points, 19 rebounds and 19 assists in his team’s first three games of a season since Michael Jordan in 1989-90.

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