New-School NBA Teams Killing Chances at Success by Overrelying on Advanced Stats

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New-School NBA Teams Killing Chances at Success by Overrelying on Advanced Stats
Bob Levey/Getty Images

Between the movie Moneyball and the Miguel Cabrera vs. Mike Trout AL MVP debate, sports analytics have rarely enjoyed a more publicized stretch.

But these advanced statistics discussions have been relegated to baseball, which is also where they've enjoyed their most popularity. Given the relative ease of implementing data in the sport (one pitcher throwing a certain pitch to one batter), it comes as little surprise that other sports have not embraced this new data as readily.

In basketball, there are simply far more moving pieces to factor in to these equations. Simplified analytics (such as the oft-cited +/- category) have struggled to identify game situations or lineup formations in their interpretations.

These unique struggles to implement advanced statistics into the sport of basketball hasn't kept all of the number crunchers away, though. In fact, a number of teams have began employing their own analytical teams, which vary in size from one team to another.

The stat pushers will argue that advanced statistics can take debates out of sports by calculating values to determine a player's effectiveness. Traditionalists will counter those debates, and eye tests can provide a more realistic look at a player than what a mathematical formula can determine.

Through the early portion of the 2012-13 season, it's been an advantage to the traditionalists.

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