Wednesday, May 17, 2006

NBA esoterica

I can't get NBA playoff games on television here in former-Soviet Georgia, so I've been obsessing over scores and stats instead. (I hope I'm not violating any copyrights by referencing numbers the NBA put up on its own playoffs page. Incidentally, I found one game score that is incorrect -- in baseball, could I be prosecuted for pointing this out?)

In the 2006 playoffs to date, there have been 63 games so far. Of these, there have been a large number of overtime games--seven--including a double overtime yesterday (Suns over Clippers). Only 10 games in the playoffs so far have been decided by two points or less, but this includes two games in a row that Cleveland won in a row in overtime by a single point to eliminate the Wizards in Round 1 (game 6 of this series is reported incorrectly by nba.com).

The Dallas Mavericks, who are now up 3-1 over the Spurs and look destined to face the Pistons in the NBA Finals, have scored 82 more points than their opponents over eight games, and have lost only one game, to the Spurs by two points. The Pistons don't seem to be doing as well--they are tied at 2 games each with the Cavaliers--but they have outscored opponents by 70 points over 9 games for an average of an 8 point margin per game (though their opponents have been easier than the Mavs'). The Pistons-Cavs series has had no close games--the average margin of victory has been 12.

As for Phoenix, they are kicking ass in overtime. In four overtime periods so far in these playoffs, they have outscored opponents 53-39.