I reviewed last year’s stats of the 3 contemporaries, LBJ, DWade and Melo’s which are summarized as follows:
LBJ DWade Melo
Overall S% 50.3 47.6 45.8
Ratio of 2s to 3s attempted: 75% 84% 88%
2pt S% 56% 51% 48%
3pt S%: 33.3 30.0 31.6
FTA per game: 7.8 6.9 7.4
FT%: 76.7% 76.1% 83%
Rebound avg: 7.3 4.8 6.6
Off reb avg: 0.9 1.4 2.2
Off Reb/Tot Reb: 0.12 0.29 0.33
Assists: 8.6 6.5 3.2
TO: 3.4 3.3 3
Assists/TO ratio: 2.53 1.97 1.07
Blocks: 1 1.1 0.4
Steals: 1.6 2.8 1.3
Blocks + steals: 2.6 2.9 1.7
ATBS: 5.1 4.9 2.8
Rings: 0 1 0
All 3 are members of the 2003 draft class & have played 7 seasons so they should be at or near their relative peaks.
b. I did not analyze “true shooting”, so shoot me.
c. LBJ ‘s shooting percentages indicate that he is a much more efficient scorer than Melo. Melo took 8.5% more shots than LBJ and LBJ scored 5.3% more than Melo.
d. LBJ’s reliance on 3s did surprise me: he attempted 89% more 3s than Melo, and only scored 5% more PPG than Melo last year.
e. Melo gets to the line better than DW and almost as well as LBJ. He also has better FT%
f. Melo’s only advantages over DWade are his slightly better 3pt range percentage and rebounding rates; however, with his serious height advantage on Wade, he only out-boards him by 38%. LBJ, playing the same position at the same height, out-boards Melo by 11%.
g. Also on rebounding: Iverson once reportedly told Melo: “At your size, you should get double digit boards every night.” Melo averages 144% more O-boards than LBJ; conversely, LBJ averages 45% more D-boards than Melo. Are all boards created equal?
h. Assist / TO and Blk/Stl ratios say it all. Melo has a much worse handle than LBJ and DWade
i. Submitted for your approval: I’m creating a new metric: the “ATBS”, and I don’t care if A/TO is a ratio and BS is an aggregation. In ATBS, LBJ and DW are 85% and 76% better than Melo, respectively. I call this an “unselfishness/efficiency” stat and Melo's inferiority is staggering. This indicates that he does not “make his teammates better”
k. As you can see, DW is included mostly for reference – he is substantially better than Melo in most categories, including, most importantly, “winning.”
Given the differences in their height and positions, LBJ has only a slight edge on DWadeIt seems clear to me that Melo is a second-tier star: very good player on a good team. Let’s stop being the be the team to overpay (or overpay for) “savior”players in terms of CAP hits, players or salaries. IMHO, as an upgrade to our roster, Melo is not worth the price we would pay in talent and dollars. Donnie was right to target LBJ. But Melo is not comparable to LBJ. Maybe Donnie should have pushed harder for Wade (not Stat) and then LBJ would have followed.