Anthony Davis Has Been Great. So Why Are The Pelicans So Bad? (538.com) (1 Viewer)

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Now that 538.com is done explaining how the other pollsters got it all wrong, they've got more time and space for their sports coverage. Today there's this:

Anthony Davis Has Been Great. So Why Are The Pelicans So Bad? | FiveThirtyEight

Davis’s off-the-charts, early-season numbers are essentially unprecedented in modern basketball for such a struggling team. If we look at Game Score — Basketball-Reference’s metric for a player’s contribution and efficiency in a single game — we can see that no player on a team that’s begun a season 0-8 has come anywhere near Davis’s average Game Score of 26.3 during that initial stretch of games in the 30 years for which the stat is available.
Several factors are to blame.

Perhaps the most obvious: Besides Davis, there hasn’t been enough offensive firepower, or perimeter shooting, to keep opposing defenses honest.
Another problem: The team is essentially playing without a point guard.
If there’s a saving grace for Davis and the Pelicans so far, it’s that they’ve been relatively unlucky to this point. According to NBA.com, they’ve lost a league-high six games in clutch scenarios, where the score was within five points in the final five minutes of play. They’re also the only team in the NBA with two overtime losses already, meaning they might be due for success in close games going forward.

But even if their record doesn’t bounce back and they do indeed turn out to be one of the NBA’s worst teams, Davis’s otherworldly performances might be reason enough to watch them play from time to time.
 

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