Steve Mitchell-US PRESSWIRE
If you've followed my work for a while, then you probably know that I like to stay as objective as possible in situations like this. If I can come up with a formula, then I'm going to do it.
The way to quantify pure scoring stems from total offense created, a metric that Kelly Scaletta and I created to determine the most dynamic offensive players in the NBA. The only difference is that offensive rebounding, turnovers and passing were eliminated from the equation.
Here is the relevant sections from the initial development of the stat:
Essentially, you can argue that there are two components to every shot: the creation of the shot and the execution of the shot itself. Sometimes a player controls both of these components, but in some situations, multiple players are involved.
For example, consider this scenario: Chris Paul penetrates and brings Blake Griffin’s defender over to stop him; Paul dishes the ball to Griffin, who throws down the dunk for two points.
In that situation, Paul created the shot, and Griffin made it. Most metrics will give two points to both of them, essentially double-counting the basket. Only two points were scored though, not four. Therefore, we're splitting the credit evenly between the distributor and the finisher.
The field goals that a player made were split up into two categories: unassisted and assisted. Players received full credit for unassisted field goals if they served as both shot-creator and shot-maker, but they received only half credit for assisted ones. This applies to both two-pointers and shots from behind the three-point arc.
Additionally, credit was given for free throws made and taken away for free throws missed. Missed field goals counted against the player:
However, all missed field goals aren’t lost possessions. Many times, teams score on missed field goals. In fact, the tip-in is one of the most efficient shots in the game, and literally none of those happen without a missed shot.
As a result, missed shots were more detrimental to the cause on teams that were less effective on the offensive glass.
Essentially, pure scoring can be quantified by summing unassisted points per game, assisted points per game and free throws made per game then subtracting missed free throws per game and the weighted version of missed field goals.