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Tuesday, January 11, 2011
Putting the NBA to the fat test

By Henry Abbott

Hayes Davenport of CelticsHub, evidently lacking appropriate hobbies, spent a lot of time calculating NBA players' body mass index.

What he found was that -- assuming the published heights and weights of NBA players are correct -- the Clippers are the fattest team in the NBA, followed closely by the Celtics.

He writes:
BMI (Body Mass Index) is a metric used to measure your obesity by comparing your weight to your height. You get it by multiplying your weight in pounds by 703 and dividing that by your height squared. For example, I’m three feet tall and weigh six hundred pounds, so my BMI is 325.5.

“Normal weight” is considered to be between 18.5-24.9. Overweight is from 25-29.9. Anything above that is obese, and anything below normal is underweight.

The Celtics shatter the scales with an average BMI of 25.99, lugged upwards by the league’s fattest player in Shaquille O’Neal (31.62) and its fourth fattest player in Glen Davis (30.97). Most teams average in the low 25s-high 24s. But the Clippers, thanks to the contributions of fireplug Craig Smith, check in with a disgusting 26.28. They actually don’t have quite as many fat guys as the Celtics do, but they also don’t have any skinny guys except Farouq Aminu.

Other notables:

NOTE: Check the comments for lots of impassioned talk about the use of the word "fat" in this article, and the use of BMI for athletes. It's tricky territory! A better explanation.