NBA Playoffs 2012: 10 Eye-Popping Stats of the Playoffs so Far

Daniel O'Brien@@DanielO_BRFeatured ColumnistMay 21, 2012

NBA Playoffs 2012: 10 Eye-Popping Stats of the Playoffs so Far

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    As the 2012 NBA playoffs continue to unfold, the league's most talented players are registering some impressive statistics.

    Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook and James Harden are making the Miami Heat's Big Three seem out of style, while Kobe Bryant is trying to keep pace with them all by himself.

    In the Eastern Conference, Rajon Rondo has a hand in every aspect of the Boston Celtics' success, while Philadelphia is coming up small in a key category.

    Check out this rundown of 10 striking statistics of the 2012 postseason.

San Antonio Spurs Sharing the Stats

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    It took a while for them to get noticed nationwide, but the San Antonio Spurs are finally garnering attention for their dominating run through the playoffs. The combination of a dependable core of veterans and a strong supporting cast has propelled the squad to a sweep of the first two rounds.

    Here's how balanced the Spurs are: Nine different players score six or more points per game, and those same nine all get at least 14 minutes of playing time.

    They all seem to be on the same page, making the extra pass and reading the defense flawlessly on pick-and-roll coverage.

Darren Collison's Seismic PER

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    The top Player Effficiency Ratings (PERs) in the playoffs belong mostly to the league's megastars like LeBron James, Kevin Durant and Kobe Bryant.

    However, Indiana Pacers reserve guard Darren Collison is right up there with the best of them.

    His PER is 25.6, which is better than Kobe, James Harden and Rajon Rondo, among others. The diminutive floor general leads the Pacers in assists (3.3), yet turns the ball over less than once per game.

    He's been less of a facilitator and more of a scorer in the Miami series, and in Game 4 he broke out with 16 points in just 20 minutes.

LeBron and Wade Score 38 Straight Points vs. Pacers

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    The Miami Heat's dependence on LeBron James and Dwyane Wade can't be overstated. The club misses Chris Bosh in a big way, and its lack of depth is painfully evident.

    Luckily, LeBron and Wade are dynamic players that can carry a team sometimes.

    It's not a recipe that works consistently, but in Sunday's Game 4 win over Indiana, Wade and James scored every Miami hoop for a 38-point stretch. They spearheaded the Heat comeback, salvaging a series split as the action shifts to South Beach for Game 5.

    Was the duo's performance fool's gold? We'll see.

Rajon Rondo Stuffing the Stat Sheet

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    It's not a stretch to label Boston Celtics star Rajon Rondo as the best point guard of the NBA playoffs thus far.

    Chris Paul and Tony Parker are extremely valuable to their clubs, but Rondo is dishing the rock at an extraordinary rate while also contributing in other areas.

    His 13.1 assists per game lead the next-best guard by 5.5, and he's also chipping in 15.9 points, 6.3 rebounds and 2.8 steals per contest.

    There's not much more that Doc Rivers can ask of Rondo, who needs to keep it up if the Celtics want to get past Philadelphia.

Clippers Give and Take

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    The Los Angeles Clippers coughed the ball up more than any other second-round playoff team with 15 turnovers per game.

    However, they also forced a bunch of steals. Chris Paul, Blake Griffin and Eric Bledsoe led the way in the theft department, and the Clippers collectively swiped nine steals per game.

    If they didn't give it away so much, L.A. would have dominated the turnover margin. Griffin and Paul committed most of the turnovers because the Clippers rely heavily on their production in isolation.

Kobe Blowing Away Competition in Field Goals Made

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    Los Angeles Lakers guard Kobe Bryant has made 114 field goals in the postseason, which is 25 more than anyone else.

    This significant gap is mostly due to his high volume of shots and the team's reliance on him in the fourth quarter. Whether it's a post-up mid-range, a dribble-drive or an off-balance three, there's no shot Kobe won't take (and make).

    He's had mixed results in the playoffs so far, but he's heating up as of late, with 36 and 38 points in his last two games.

    Bryant's undoubtedly the closest thing to Michael Jordan in today's game because of the variety of ways he can score.

The New Big Three

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    When Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook and James Harden are clicking, there's nothing that can slow them down.

    The Oklahoma City Thunder trio is scoring nearly 68 points per game in the playoffs, more than any other team's threesome. They're also pretty much the only facilitators on the squad, as they account for 65 percent of the team's assists.

    Durant, Westbrook and Harden can all create their own shot, set up scores for others and get out in transition. If they take care of business against the Lakers, it will be interesting to see how the Spurs defend such a potent threesome.

The Old-School Big Three

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    Speaking of trios, the San Antonio Spurs' Big Three has a statistic of their own to boast: 36 years of collective NBA experience, which dwarfs the Thunder trio's 12 years.

    Tony Parker and Manu Ginobili's playmaking skills and heads-up ball movement keep the offense humming, while Tim Duncan's interior effort on both ends stabilizes the whole team. 

    All three have been able to play significant minutes, and the squad's deep bench has prevented them from getting overworked.

    Gregg Popovich's veterans have a championship pedigree and are all finally healthy together. The results aren't pretty for opponents, who have yet to crack the Spurs' code in the postseason.

Roy Hibbert Owning Offensive Glass

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    Chris Bosh's absence has opened up a bevy of opportunities for the Indiana Pacers, as the Miami Heat are more vulnerable on the boards without the star power forward.

    LeBron James and Company had a great rebounding day Sunday, but Pacers center Roy Hibbert has been the best offensive rebounder in the entire playoffs. He's pulling down 4.2 offensive boards per game and 11.4 total rebounds per game.

    Hibbert was a superb offensive rebounder throughout the year, but he's even better this postseason. His work on the glass has helped give Indiana extra possessions and a legitimate chance to upend the Heat. 

Philly's Outside-Shooting Troubles

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    For as gritty and resilient as the Philadelphia 76ers are, they're unable to light up the scoreboard due to a power outage behind the arc.

    Doug Collins' club is making just 4.3 three-pointers per game. That means they're only getting 12.9 points per game from long range, which puts a lot of pressure on the mid-range game and paint production.

    Only Jrue Holiday and Andre Iguodala are making more than one three-pointer per game.

    Part of the credit goes to the Boston Celtics defense, but the Sixers still need to convert at a better rate (currently 32 percent from three-point range in the playoffs).