HANG TIME NEW JERSEY – The playoffs are here. And to get you ready, we’ve got statistical nuggets for each series, courtesy of NBA.com/Stats.
Western Conference basketball was faster and more efficient than Eastern Conference hoops. We’re sure to see three high-paced series in the first round, because six of the eight West playoff teams ranked in the top 10 in pace, with the only exceptions being the Clippers and Grizzlies, who will face each other.
Pace won’t be the only reason scoring will be higher in the West. Seven of the eight West playoff teams ranked in the top 10 in offensive efficiency.
Pace: Possessions per 48 minutes (League Rank)
OffRtg: Points scored per 100 possessions (League Rank)
DefRtg: Points allowed per 100 possessions (League Rank)
NetRtg: Point differential per 100 possessions (League Rank)
The league averaged 94.4 possessions (per team) per 48 minutes and 103.1 points scored per 100 possessions.
Oklahoma City (1) vs. Houston (8)
Oklahoma City Thunder (60-22)
Pace: 95.9 (10)
OffRtg: 110.2 (2)
DefRtg: 99.2 (4)
NetRtg: +11.0 (1)
Houston Rockets (45-37)
Pace: 98.6 (1)
OffRtg: 106.7 (6)
DefRtg: 103.5 (16)
NetRtg: +3.3 (9)
- The Rockets had the highest turnover rate in the league, turning the ball over 16.6 times per 100 possessions.
- The Thunder scored 117.5 points per 100 possessions with Russell Westbrook, Kevin Martin and Kevin Durant on the floor, the highest mark of any three-man combination that has played at least 500 minutes together.
- The Rockets ranked 22nd defensively before the All-Star break, allowing 104.4 points per 100 possessions. They ranked eighth defensively after the break, allowing just 101.6. Only the Miami Heat improved more defensively after the break.
- James Harden (792) and Durant (750) ranked first and second in free throw attempts, respectively.
- The Rockets attempted just 14.8 percent of their shots from mid-range, the lowest rate in the league. The league average (28.3 percent) was almost twice that.
San Antonio (2) vs. L.A. Lakers (7)
San Antonio Spurs (58-24)
Pace: 96.4 (6)
OffRtg: 105.9 (7)
DefRtg: 99.2 (3)
NetRtg: +6.8 (3)
Los Angeles Lakers (45-37)
Pace: 96.8 (5)
OffRtg: 105.6 (8)
DefRtg: 103.6 (19)
NetRtg: +2.0 (10)
- The Lakers held their opponents to the lowest FTA Rate (FTA/FGA) in the league. Their opponents attempted just 22.2 free throws per 100 shots from the field.
- The Spurs ranked fourth offensively before the All-Star break, scoring 107.4 points per 100 possessions. But they ranked 17th offensively after the All-Star break, scoring 103.2 points per 100 possessions. No team regressed more offensively after the break.
- The Lakers’ defense allowed just 99.7 points per 100 possessions in 1,876 minutes with both Dwight Howard and Metta World Peace on the floor, but they allowed 107.5 in 1,499 minutes with only one of the two on the floor.
- The Spurs’ lineup of Tony Parker, Danny Green, Kawhi Leonard, Tim Duncan and Tiago Splitter was the league’s best defensive lineup (minimum 200 minutes played), allowing just 87.7 points per 100 possessions in 364 minutes.
- The Lakers scored 107.4 points per 100 possessions with Kobe Bryant on the floor, but just 99.7 in 938 minutes with him on the bench. They scored just 90.2 points per 100 possessions against the Spurs with Bryant on the bench.
Denver (3) vs. Golden State (6)
Denver Nuggets (57-25)
Pace: 97.8 (2)
OffRtg: 107.6 (5)
DefRtg: 102.0 (11)
NetRtg: +5.6 (5)
Golden State Warriors (47-35)
Pace: 96.7 (4)
OffRtg: 104.2 (10)
DefRtg: 102.6 (13)
NetRtg: +1.7 (11)
- The Nuggets are the best offensive rebounding team in the league, grabbing 31.4 percent of available offensive boards, while the Warriors are the best defensive rebounding team, allowing their opponents to grab just 24.5 percent of available offensive boards. Golden State ranked last in defensive rebounding each of the previous five seasons.
- The Nuggets led the league in both fast break points and points in the paint.
- No three teammates played more minutes together this season than Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson and David Lee, who logged 2,191 minutes together over 75 games.
- Against Denver, the Warriors scored just 94.9 points per 100 possessions in 147 minutes with Kenneth Faried on the floor, and 111.9 in 55 minutes with Faried on the bench.
- The Nuggets outscored their opponents by 11.7 points per 100 possessions at home and were outscored by 0.5 on the road. No team had a bigger home-road discrepancy.
L.A. Clippers (4) vs. Memphis (5)
Los Angeles Clippers (56-26)
Pace: 93.6 (19)
OffRtg: 107.7 (4)
DefRtg: 101.0 (9)
NetRtg: +6.7 (4)
Memphis Grizzlies (56-26)
Pace: 91.1 (29)
OffRtg: 101.7 (18)
DefRtg: 97.4 (2)
NetRtg: +4.2 (8)
- The Clippers forced the most turnovers in the league, 17.2 per 100 possessions, but only one team put their opponents on the line more than the Clippers, whose opponents attempted 30.6 free throws per 100 shots from the field.
- The Grizzlies were the best team in the league over the last 10 games, outscoring their opponents by 10.3 points per 100 possessions.
- The Clippers had the league’s second best clutch offense (scoring 116.8 points per 100 possessions), but also the league’s third worst clutch defense (allowing 116.9).
- The Grizzlies allowed just 90.3 points per 100 possessions with Mike Conley, Tony Allen and Tayshaun Prince on the floor, the lowest mark of any three-man combination that has played at least 500 minutes together.
- No Western Conference team had a more efficient offense against the Grizzlies than the Clippers did. L.A. scored 106.0 points per 100 possessions against Memphis. Only New York, Philadelphia and Atlanta scored more.