Miami Heat Check: Best Seniors, Juniors, Sophomores and Freshmen in Team History

Reservoir GodCorrespondent IIJuly 16, 2011

Miami Heat Check: Best Seniors, Juniors, Sophomores and Freshmen in Team History

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    LeBron James did not need a college education to be an important player for the Miami Heat, but Alonzo Mourning and Dwyane Wade proved their time in college made them very valuable athletes. No Heat players with three or four years in college have been more productive than Mourning or Wade in franchise history.

    From college seniors to high school seniors, let's take a look at the best Heat players in each class.

Miami Heat, Best in Class: Background Information

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    This article will use Wins Produced, a statistical model created by sports economist David Berri from the Wages of Wins Journal, to measure how much a player's box score statistics contributed to their team's wins. An average player produces 0.100 wins per 48 minutes (WP48), a star player produces +0.200 WP48 and a superstar produces +0.300 WP48.

    The stats used in this article are powered by NerdNumbers.

    More information on this stat can be found at the following links:

    What Wins Produced Says and What It Does Not Say
    Calculating Wins Produced
    Frequently Asked Questions

Miami Heat, Best in Class: College Seniors

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    This spreadsheet lists all players in Heat history that spent four years in college. Seniors produced 62 percent of Heat wins in 23 seasons. Nine of the 10 most productive players in team history were seniors.

    The most productive senior in franchise history is Alonzo Mourning with 73.8 wins produced (0.203 WP48) in 11 seasons. The second most productive senior is Eddie Jones with 44.9 wins produced (0.153 WP48) in six seasons. 

    Udonis Haslem (42.6 wins produced), Tim Hardaway (39.3 wins produced) and Rony Seikaly (34.7 wins produced) are other productive Heat players that entered the NBA after four years of college.

Miami Heat, Best in Class: College Juniors

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    This spreadsheet lists all 17 players in Heat history that spent three years in college. Juniors produced 22 percent of the wins in franchise history.

    Dwyane Wade is the most productive junior in team history with 110.2 wins produced (0.258 WP48). The second most productive junior is Shaquille O'Neal with 25.5 wins produced (0.226 WP48).

    Only three juniors were drafted by the Heat: Wade, Mario Chalmers (8.4 wins produced, 0.067 WP48) and Harold Miner (0.6 wins produced, 0.008 WP48).

Miami Heat, Best in Class: College Sophomores

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    This spreadsheet lists the 12 players in HEAT history with two years of college experience. Sophomores only produced 3 percent of the HEAT wins since 1989.

    The most productive sophomore in team history is Lamar Odom with 12.6 wins produced (0.201 WP48), and the second most productive sophomore is Quentin Richardson with 8.7 wins produced (0.202 WP48).

    Caron Butler (8.1 wins produced, 0.079 WP48), Antoine Walker (-2.0 wins produced, -0.024 WP48) and Mark Blount (-3.4 wins produced, -0.092 WP48) are the only sophomores to play more than one season with the Heat.

Miami Heat, Best in Class: College Freshmen

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    This spreadsheet lists the five players in Heat history with one year of college experience. Freshmen produced one percent of the Heat wins all-time.

    The most productive freshman in team history is Chris Bosh with 7.9 wins produced (0.136 WP48), and the second most productive freshman is Michael Beasley with 3.9 wins produced (0.043 WP48).

    Freshmen were the least productive class of Heat players with just 0.042 wins produced per 48 minutes (an average player produces 0.100 WP48).

Miami Heat, Best in Class: Foreign Players

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    This spreadsheet lists the five foreign players in Heat history. Foreign players produced one percent of the Heat wins in the NBA.

    The most productive foreign player in franchise history is Vladimir Stepania with 9.8 wins produced (0.189 WP48), and the second most productive foreign player is Sasha Danilovic with 0.7 wins produced (0.017 WP48).

    No foreign player stayed on the Heat roster more than two seasons.

Miami Heat, Best in Class: High School Players

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    This spreadsheet lists the three high school players in Heat history. High schoolers produced four percent of team wins all-time.

    The most productive high school player in franchise history is LeBron James with 22.8 wins produced (0.358 WP48), and the second most productive high school player is Dorell Wright with 15.4 wins produced (0.180 WP48). 

    Jermaine O'Neal (2.2 wins produced, 0.037 WP48) and Shaun Livingston (-0.1 wins produced, -0.134 WP48) are the only other high school players to wear a Heat uniform. Livingston only played 41 minutes in the 2009 season.

Best in Class Miami Heat Team

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    Now that the hard part is out of the way, let's name the starters and reserves for the best in class of the Heat team.

    Starters:


    PG - LeBron James, High School
    SG - Dwyane Wade, Junior
    SF - Lamar Odom, Sophomore
    PF - Chris Bosh, Freshman
    C - Alonzo Mourning, Senior

     

    Reserves:


    G - Eddie Jones, Senior
    C - Shaquille O'Neal, Junior
    G/F - Dorell Wright, High School
    C - Vladimir Stepania, Foreign
    G/F - Quentin Richardson, Sophomore
    F - Michael Beasley, Freshman
    G - Sasha Danilovic, Foreign

    Of course, the captains for my best in class Heat team would be Mourning and Wade. They make a good team, as evidenced by their work for Zo's Summer Groovewhich kicks off next weekend.

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