KJ’s BB Newsletter                       February 27, 2001

Here’s a response I sent to Mark Hanson, DM Register columnist, who recently had an article stating that Creighton’s Ryan Sears was a good point guard, Kansas’ Kirk Hinrich was better, but ISU’s Jamaal Tinsley was the best.


I just had to write and let you know that you had the order a little wrong in your recent article stating that Jamaal Tinsley was better than Kirk Hinrich and Ryan Sears.

Here's some data as proof that Hinrich is the best:

Martin Manley's Production Index is a simple one that basically counts the 'good' things players do (e.g. points, rebounds, steals, assists, and blocked shots), and subtracts the 'bad' things (missed FGs, missed FTs, and turnovers).  The result then can be divided by the number of games played to show their production index per game, or it can be divided by Minutes played to derive an index which shows how effective they are when on the floor.

Here are the results (through 27 games for Tinsley and 26 each for Hinrich and Sears)

Player               Game Index    Minute Index

Hinrich              17.38                .522

Tinsley              14.85                .461

Sears                12.88                .381

Clearly, Hinrich is not only better per game, but he's more effective while on the floor.

Another way to look at this is based on point guard indicators proposed by Jed Tai on his web site About.com.  He uses seven different indicators:

  Indicator                                    Tinsley              Hinrich              Sears

Points per 40 Minutes             17.81                14.15                13.59

Field Goal %                             40.2                  51.3                  37.8

Three Point %                            39.8                  52.9                  35.0

Free Throw %                            70.7                  84.2                  79.2

Assists per 40 Minutes             7.36                  8.65                  4.91

Assist/Turnover Ratio                 1.58                  2.13                  2.20

Steals per 40 Minutes             2.99                  1.52                  2.68

Tai ranks PGs and then weights each of the Indicators.  Since we can't do that here, due to small numbers of players, let me just state that Hinrich is the best on 4 of the seven indicators, Tinsley on only two, while Sears had the best A/T ratio.

On 1/31 Tai ranked the best 55 PGs in the country, and Hinrich ranked 10th, Tinsley 20th, and Sears didn't make the list.  Dean Oliver, incidently, was 43.

Lastly, there is what Tai calls the Prouty Index (I don't know who Prouty is).  It comes from four factors which are summed and then averaged:

Offensive Efficiency = Pts / (FGA*2) + FTA

Total Offense = (Pts + A*2 - TO) / Min

Possessions Gained = (Reb + Stl = (Blk/2) - PF) / Min

Win Rating = Min / (Team Total Min / 5) * Team Winning Pct.

Tinsley              .496

Hinrich              .525

Sears                .454

In summary, based on a variety of statistics, Hinrich is clearly a better ball player than Tinsley, even though he's only a sophomore while Tinsley is in his last year.