All Forums > Hoops Dynasty Basketball > Hoops Dynasty > players impacting team mates - passing raising fg%
2/10/2014 7:14 PM (edited)
NOTE - post 1 contains all the info from seble. post 2 contains some of my interpretation and then some related theory on how i view the game. i would suggest everyone read post 1, while it may take a bit more fortitude to make it through post 2 ;)

hey guys,
i just wanted to create a thread that would hopefully get some visibility with this title, instead of burying this info in a thread someone else made about half a page down from here.

the question was raised if team passing was weighted by position, and also, if bh or pass was more important in preventing turnovers. i told the coach definitely passing was weighted by position, but didn't know about the impact on turnovers. basically, before the new engine, players did not impact their team mates performance - a great passing PG didn't get his big better looks - a pathetically useless, stupid pg (low ratings and iq) didn't cause team mates to commit more turnovers, by giving them the ball in bad situations. none of those kinds of things were in play. i know that seble added something along these lines in the new engine, because we had talked about it while he was working on the new engine, and he agreed that minimally, a great pg should get team mates better open looks. 

what wasn't clear is if that was the only mechanism that was put into play, and also, what happened to passing as a result - did it have less of an effect on individual performance (TOs) now? i sent a sitemail to seble, and while it doesn't answer all the questions one might have on this subject, i think it conveys some very useful info. so, i wanted to pass it along.

me (abbreviated): can you elaborate on how players can impact team mates? in the quality passing creating better (more open) looks type of mechanic, is it just passing, or other ratings? are there are mechanics like this, or is it the only one? also, is passing now less important in the turnover decision for single players, given its increased importance elsewhere?

seble: Yes, teammates passing ability does affect FG%, both positively and negatively depending on quality. Also, having teammates who are often double-teamed will also lead to FG% increases.

In a less direct way, the overall team's ability impacts turnovers/fouls/etc. So, for example, a team that tends to turn the ball over a lot can lead to a particular player having more than he would if you looked at his ratings in isolation.

Passing is still important to turnover rate, and is generally equally important compared to ball handling.


me: thanks! One clarification - is it only passing of teammates that affects FG%? Or do other ratings factor in, like ath, spd, bh, and IQ? Sorry, 1 more clarification. The less direct effects you talk about, did those exist prior to the new engine, or did you add those along with the passing impacting FG% logic in the new engine?

seble: Passing + IQ affects FG%. As for the less direct effects, that was new with the new engine.

2/10/2014 5:34 PM
it seems to me that in the old engine, ball handling was important for scoring (especially 3 point shooting by guards), where passing was really just for turnovers - so i theorized, passing must be more important in turnovers. however, in the old engine, i felt strongly passing was not as important as it should be, and accordingly, i did not give it nearly the priority one would expect in my guards (i focused much more on defensive abilities in my pg, and in the scoring ratings in my sg). it sounds like in the new engine, bh is still important offensively, and now that passing is important offensively, in the team sense, bh and passing are about split in importance, in terms of reducing the turnovers of the player in question.

seble didn't speak to (and i didn't ask) if passing was weighted by position, but im just about positive the answer is yes, there. its interesting that IQ is also a factor, but bh, ath, and spd are not. i thought it was also interesting that seble introduced these other effects in the new engine. at this point, i am going to go off on a tangent, that i have meant to go off on for some time now...

it sounds to me that the game has made an important shift to increased focus on team abilities. i don't mean overall rebounding rating of a team, or anything like that - but the quality of the team ends up impacting the performance of the individual. many people know i have argued that individual rebounding ratings are somewhat misleading, because the performance of the individual is skewed by the quality of his team mates. when you have a 99 ath/reb guy get 10 boards on a poor team, and 6 on a great team, you know you can't look too hard an individual ratings for clarity on the quality of a player. i think this type of view that i have on the game has often met some resistance - which is fine - it should, to some extent. but i also think its important people know that now its not just rebounding, but fouls, turnovers, heck, even shooting! for which team abilities play into the performance of an individual. those who i mentor and sitemail with frequently know the emphasis i place on team abilities - i think this revelation from seble only further strengthens my belief in that kind of view of the game.

because i've never really talked about it publicly (which is somewhat amazing to me) - largely because it took many years to formalize the way i look at the game, even though this is how ive viewed things for many years - i want to go ahead and say this. when i look at players, and discuss quality of players, i don't see or talk about ratings - not directly, well, not primarily, at least. i always talk abilities. when i ask someone what they think about a player, and they start to say well, i like his speed, dont like his bh, etc - i just stop them immediately (assuming i am trying to teach their person) - a rating in and of itself tells you nothing. saying "i like his 3 point shooting, i like his rebounding ability" - this is the best way to discuss and to view the game. there are too many ratings and the abundance or deficiency of a single rating tells you nothing about how that player will perform. its much more logical, even though we are all trained to do the opposite from the beginning, to discuss the abilities of that player - is he a good defender, good rebounder, etc... and this also lends itself to discussing abilities at the team level. even without coding in the sim for team abilities, i believe in this approach - its much easier to understand a team and how/why a team is performing the way they are, when you are looking at the abilities of the players and the team - not at individual ratings! i've always believed and advocated that the engine does not compare individual ratings - it uses intermediate aggregates, aka, abilities, to make decisions. what was not clear is the extent to which these were aggregated further into team abilities. it is still not clear to what extent that happens, but it is now clear, it seems to me, that team aggregates or team abilities play a hand in most parts of the sim. to me, that is all the more reason to push to view and analyze players and teams by their abilities, not by ratings.

for example, if you were to ask yourself, as i ask people in our first major mentoring conversation - tell me about your ideal lineup, what you are shooting for in recruiting - what do you want the players to look like, or what major options/tradeoffs do you look for - the answer sounds very different in a ratings vs abilities approach. most people will start, well, i want my pg to have good passing, and generally i want him to have pretty good ath, spd, and def, although if hes got really good ath i can have less spd or def, or if hes got great speed and def, i can take less ath, and i want my sg to have good spd and per and bh and maybe ft%, but if hes got good lp i can take a little less per, and so on and so on. its very messy and confusing.

instead, you can say things like, i really want a pg who is a strong defender and is a strong passer. i am ok with him not being a good scorer as long as my SF is, between him and my SF, i want one strong scorer. my SG i usually like to be a strong perimeter scorer, but if i get strong perimeter scoring on my PG or SF, i can take a more 2 point oriented scorer at SG. at SF i always want two of the three, strong defense, offense, or rebounding, but i don't care as much about guard skills. i need one of my 2 bigs to be strong on offense, and both to be strong on defense and on the boards. 

you can convey much more about what you want with the ability sense, i think most people don't have a clear idea what kind of tradeoffs they want, how many strong defenders they need, how many strong scorers they need, how many strong rebounders they need, and how the priorities go - because its too confusing to talk about, and too confusing to think about, when you are sifting through all the ratings. of course, people will need to discuss and build an understanding of what ratings go into an ability, but its much easier to convey ideas about building a team and planning for recruiting, and all that good stuff, with abilities. people will often say to me, i am nervous about this guy because he doesn't have that much speed. well, why does that matter? is it going to hold him back on offense, on defense, what? a lot of times they look at it and go well, he has great ath/def and im playing m2m, so i guess that 70 spd in d1 is fine, and hes not really a core scorer, so you know what, actually his strengths really outweigh that 70 spd, which won't particularly hurt him. basically, its hard to see the forest through the trees, and i think when you focus on ratings, its too much looking at the trees, not enough at the forest. for example, one very simple, easy to apply rule with abilities is, every player you need must have 2 clear strengths in their core abilities (for guards, off, def, guard skills, for bigs, off, def, reb, small forwards are kind of weird as they have 4 possible core skills but reb and guard skills are only half way core skills). any player with just 1 clear strength, by and large, doesn't cut it. and many people get guys with 0 clear strengths because they look well roudned, but in reality, those players are just awful. its very difficult for me to say in ratings, a concise metric one can use to evaluate if a player is strong enough, when trying to compete at a high level. 

on a team level, you can also look at the abilities of your players, and quickly determine if you have the right balance. this is way more difficult with rating speak. quick example, if you just get 2 clear strengths per player, and focus on lining them up right, you can build a great team without really having any stars. you get 2 offensive strengths, 2 reb strengths, 2 guard skill strengths, and 4 defensive strengths. any team with 4/5 defenders strong is going to be good defensively, and defense is the one area not really subject to diminishing returns. if you have 2 clear strong scorers, guys who are leading scorer types, you more than likely have enough offense to go around. if your bigs are both strong rebounders, you are in good shape on the boards, even if the rest of your team sucks. and if your guards have strong guard skills, you really don't need it anywhere else. thats 10 strengths, 2 per player. its a very simple way to describe how to build a very effective team. teams competing at the highest level should get a stud or two, and be able to bring that 12 up to 11 or 12, without too much difficulty. but whats interesting is, there's just that much value on going from 5 solid players, with 2 strengths each, to 5 super stars, with 3 each. you can't score that much more effectively with 5 studs than with 2, if the 2 get to score a lot, and presumably there are some offensive role players in the mix. you can't defend that much better with 5 strong defenders than 4 (although i definitely like my 11th strength to be the 5th mans defense). going from 2 strong rebounding bigs to strong rebounding at all 5 positions is a boost, but its not that big of a boost, not nearly as important as going from 1 strong rebounder to 2, is. same goes for guard skills.

anyway ill stop rambling now, but i think coaches who are struggling to get their team to really perform, who feel they are recruiting talent but struggle to make the most of it, could REALLY benefit from trying an abilities-based analysis of your team. does every player meet the 2 strength standard? when you count your strengths of your starters, is it nice and balanced, or are you shooting yourself in the foot by having too many scorers and not enough defenders or rebounders? also, when you have to settle for a guy, and you get a pf without great rebounding, knowing the game works on team abilities, if you have the rebounding at sf and sg, you know you can make up for it (you still have to be decent at PF, at least). but you know if you don't have any other good rebounding, you are pretty screwed. i think the game just makes a LOT more sense when you break it down into abilities, instead of ratings. it takes getting used to - the way you look at every single player changes, at least, thats how people i mentor describe it to me, when they start trying to use the new approach. it really seems to help in getting the proper team setup, too. it just provides clarity - its not really anything, but a framework to talk about the team and the players and the setup in more logical terms, instead of getting lost in the nonsense that is individual ratings.
2/10/2014 6:10 PM
I don't know if this is similar, but I tend to try to think of "Ability clusters"

This one has a good post defense cluster, and a good rebounding cluster.  This one has a good defense cluster, and a good "Floor game" cluster.  Generally, a player should have at least two clusters, or be VERY good at one cluster.  Ideally, in the regular rotation I want a certain amount of each cluster:  This many shooter clusters, this many post scorer clusters, this many rebound clusters. . . etc.

I don't know howw murky that sounds, but there it is, sorta.


2/10/2014 6:15 PM
Whoever reads your entire 2nd post gets a gold star. Lol.
2/10/2014 6:19 PM
Thanks gillispie.  Your mentoring me in this philosophy has helped a ton.  For those that read this and don't quite understand it, I suggest you read it over several more times and ask the questions needed to grasp it.  Though I am still working through the nuances of applying it the idea has changed the way I look at productive and unproductive players and teams.  "Good" players sometimes don't look so good and "bad" players become overly productive when you see them for their combined abilities and not their individual numbers.  Good stuff!  
2/11/2014 12:43 AM
i got a gold star!   and im not even drunk!  ;-)

seriously,  great stuff Dr. Gil.
 
its intersting you bring this up.  i recently read something you wrote or maybe said in the interview.
.  
basically, that it is important to develop some theories about how the game works, and which things are important, etc... AND THEN TO EVALUATE THOSE THEORIES!

this really slapped me in the face.  i have no shortage of HD theories, and i guess i informally evaluate them.... but... i think there are times that down deep at places i dont like to talk about at parties... i dont want to find out that my theory is wrong... so, if i "test" it at all,  its really not a valid test as i am looking for those things  i want to see... im not bojective.

ironcially, one of the areas where i allways kinda feared i was wrong was the value of PA.   i want sooooo badly for PA to be important.  in my real world, the way i was taught and the way i teach.... it is soooooo fundamental to good basketball... both the physical abilities to see the court and pass accurately AND the mental approach that "i want the team to score the easiest possible basket each time down the court and that will require really good passers who are taught the value of great passes and great decsisions.  

and i tended to feel that it was even more improtant for weak offensive players to be good passers than for strong offensive players.   sounds like this may not have been the case (although it may be now?)

as for the other main point brought forward here... "think abilities , not individual ratings"  is genius in its simplicity.  so obvious,  yet so often overlooked.   i absolutely tend to think "ratings"  but now i see the value of looking at it a little differently.  

 great stuff.
2/11/2014 7:57 AM
A better articulation of things I have thought, thanks!

Thinking about what a guy can do, rather than his ratings, is why I have stayed away from spreadsheet and "player role" methods of analysis.  I may be wrong, but I think I can look at a guy's numbers and say - this guy can be valuable because his package of numbers will be good at doing x and y.......I am not good enough at spreadsheets to do better than my eye can do.
2/11/2014 9:25 AM
because i've never really talked about it publicly (which is somewhat amazing to me) - largely because it took many years to formalize the way i look at the game, even though this is how ive viewed things for many years - i want to go ahead and say this. when i look at players, and discuss quality of players, i don't see or talk about ratings - not directly, well, not primarily, at least. i always talk abilities. when i ask someone what they think about a player, and they start to say well, i like his speed, dont like his bh, etc - i just stop them immediately (assuming i am trying to teach their person) - a rating in and of itself tells you nothing. saying "i like his 3 point shooting, i like his rebounding ability" - this is the best way to discuss and to view the game. there are too many ratings and the abundance or deficiency of a single rating tells you nothing about how that player will perform. its much more logical, even though we are all trained to do the opposite from the beginning, to discuss the abilities of that player - is he a good defender, good rebounder, etc... and this also lends itself to discussing abilities at the team level. even without coding in the sim for team abilities, i believe in this approach - its much easier to understand a team and how/why a team is performing the way they are, when you are looking at the abilities of the players and the team - not at individual ratings! i've always believed and advocated that the engine does not compare individual ratings - it uses intermediate aggregates, aka, abilities, to make decisions. what was not clear is the extent to which these were aggregated further into team abilities. it is still not clear to what extent that happens, but it is now clear, it seems to me, that team aggregates or team abilities play a hand in most parts of the sim. to me, that is all the more reason to push to view and analyze players and teams by their abilities, not by ratings.

Gil, you've written some great stuff, but this might be the best-- i have only recently began to think in this fashion (after coming to it mostly on my own, although with some prompting from other members) and it has made me into a much better HD player.

Well said, and well worth listening to.
2/11/2014 9:37 AM
I use a similar thought process as well, probably because my philosophy is heavily influenced by BillyG and Mr. Jones.

My parameters are a bit more rigid (which is why they are more successful than I am) and still evolving.   This is how I think:

1. Everyone has to be good at defense.   I want my five starters to be EXCELLENT at defense.  I'll drop off of this a little if I play zone but I still want my starting average to be excellent.  Enough people play man to man that exploiting a weak defender  is SOP in the NT.   I don't want to give people that option.

2. My bigs need to be able to rebound.    I want my PF and C to be able to carry my team on the boards.    So by default, ALL my bigs will be good defensively and rebounding.   If they can score as well, it's a bonus.

3. My PG needs to be a point guard.   I want high speed, high passing, and high BH.  I would take a 80-80-80 guy with 1's in PER and LP  over a a guy with 70's and significant offensive stats.  These players are the hardest to find in my opinion.   There are fewer of them and valued by many people.  They don't slip through the cracks all that often.  In a pinch (or a rebuild) I'll look for what I consider a backup PG, great SPD-BH-PASS but questionable defense.   Those guys are a dime a dozen and can be found cheap.

4. Someone needs to be an outside shooter, ideally two.  I like to have a 3 point threat be a starter and one come off the bench.   I like to RS my scorers mostly because the really good ones I land tend to be the HIHI LP or PER guys and take 3 seasons to get their PER of 21 up to the point where they are really good.  Particularly in D3 some of these guys are unstoppable.   It's not very rare to have 80-80 SPD/PER threat but it's almost impossible to find a 80-80 SPD-DEF guy with halfway decent guard skills to cover them.   I dread covering these guys because my stock very good guard defender  gets abused by them.  

5. Someone needs to be an inside scorer.   It doesn't matter who.   On my D2 team right now it's a BIG, on my good D3 team it's some guards.   I am on a high  LP kick with my guards (for a couple reasons but it basically boils down to  Moneyballesque reasons, they're cheaper to land).  

6. Someone need to come off the bench and score.   In a perfect world there is an inside and OUTside scoring threat off the bench but this doesn't always happen.

7. My SG and SF tend to be the scorers but they don't have to be.   Sometimes they are just really good defenders or if I have a PG that can score I like to be able to match him up on the weakest defender so it's really useful when my other guard can play the point.


In a nut shell.....

1. Everyone must be good at defense.
2. Bigs gotta rebound
3. Somebody has to score



2/11/2014 11:35 AM
Like Dave, I want players to move the ball and move their feet to create high-percentage opportunities. Applied to HD, speed creates separation, and BH and PASS create ball movement. (Then, as TJ notes, you need LP or PER to score the basketball.)
2/11/2014 12:13 PM
yeah, myG  i kinda lefft that out when discussing my opinion of the value of passing in real life....  the dudes wihtout the ball have to be athletic enough and smart enough to get open......  passing  just for passings sake does not pay the bills.   
2/11/2014 12:25 PM
good stuff as usual tjoey.

  for me,  the most intructive and thought provoking part of those kinds of discussions is when you start having to break your rules  (you take over a low prestige school,  or get in a bind due to a lost recruiting battle etc.     everyone wants great defenders,  everyone want quick athletic players.  etc.   but, when you discuss how hard it is to find the prototype sp,de,bh, pa PG... (which is true) then you get into the "lesser of two evils" choices that  make things interesting.  

i would tend to agree that i would value sp, bh pa for a PG even if it meant sacrificing de.    but i wonder if different off or def sets would make me lean toward a different choice there?   and i still have to figure out if i am still overvaluing passing (in HD.... its impossible to overvalue passing in real hoops ;-)  seems like maybe the engine tweak helped make PA nearly as important as my stubborn mind always wanted it to be.   but, again, i think that may depend on off and def sets and the relative strengths of the PGs teammates. 

hmmm,  im doin it again with specfic talk of individual ratings instead of talents.... old habits die hard i guess.

2/11/2014 1:07 PM (edited)
Very useful info Mr. G, as always.

One thing I have found to be fact, and I will argue this with anyone who cares to disagree, is that if you give your PG a high distro in a triangle offense, his scoring ability and that of the entire offense will struggle mightily.  I'm not quite smart enough to figure out quite why just yet, but I do think that little nugget tells us something about the game engine.  It doesn't appear to like ball-hoggging PGs, especially in the triangle for some reason.  It may tell us that the engine values that position a certain way, and that a PG taking too many shots will make the rest of the offense worse because his decision to shoot is likely causing him to overlook a teammate who had a better chance to score.  I run mostly triangle with my teams because it is the offense I understand the best in this engine, and I've gotten to the point where I rarely give my PG more than 10% of the distro assigned to my starting 5.  Something around 5%-10% of the distro given to the players on the floor residing in the hands of your PG in a triangle offense seems to maximize a good PGs ability to find the open look for his team.

As for thinking about players in terms of abilities rather than attributes, its great to hear you say that because it confirms I've been looking at this game the right way.  I think you are 100% correct in saying this is how you should evaluate players and recruits.  I've actually got formulas I use to evaluate some of these abilities as well (although I think they are likely too simplistic and need to be refined a bit more).  I'm one of the HD coaches with the great distinction of "knows how to win, but can't win NTs."  I've got a pretty good career winning percentage (73% both under this ID and my other one)  and have made more Final Fours than I can count, but I've never won a NT.  I think I might just need to refine how I look at roster construction.  I've always evaluated players based on their abilities to do certain things (score, rebound, defend, run the offense, etc.) but I think I'm often guilty of losing sight of having a good mixture of those core abilities on my teams.

Thinking about abilities in a team context is definitely a very intelligent way of looking at things.  You basically are going to play 10 players, with the other 2 redshirting/IE/playing sparingly.  You need at least 8 guys who are great defenders independently of any other ability, 2 guys who are great distributors of the ball/runners of your offense, 2 guys who are good perimeter scorers (and to be clear, I don't mean 2 guys with good perimeter ratings), 2 guys who are good post scorers, 4 good rebounders (2 in the starting lineup and 2 off the bench).  If you have more of any of those abilities covered than the minimum required, the better your team will be and the better your chances are of making deep runs in the NT.

All that said, when I first started playing HD, I wish someone had told me "if you recruit only 2 attributes and build your team around those 2, focus on athleticism and defense" I would have been good at this game a lot sooner.  Those 2 things make great defenders (along with SPD and BLK, to a lesser extent, depedning on the system you are running), and a team filled with great defenders can play with just about anyone.
2/11/2014 1:34 PM
mdunacanhogs -- As a practitioner of the Triangle and a cultivator of point guards, the topic of how much distribution to give my PG draws more of my attention than any other in HD. I have had All-American PG's who have been my highest distro option on my winningest teams. At present, on my Charlotte team in Knight, my PG weighs in at 93 speed, 99/99 BH and passing. With a PER of 79 and an LP of 31, I would like to set him as my 4th option. I play around with distributions and results seem match-up driven.

Theoretically, having your PG with high -- even the highest -- distribution should not be a problem. The point guard initiates the offense by making the pass to the wing. Then, the offense goes wherever the defense dictates that it does.  People describe the Triangle in these forums as the same 3 guys passing the ball amongst themselves with the other 2 excluded from the offense. But, that is not the case in basketball and should not be the case in simulated basketball. The triangle forms and reforms with other players. The top wing plays a crucial role. That's one of the reasons I think of my SF as my second PG. 

James Gels, from the Coach’s Clipboard, describes the basic structure of the triangle offense as a "sideline triangle" on one side of the floor, and a "two-man game" on the weakside. The sideline triangle is formed by a post player on the block and two perimeter players, one in the corner and one on the wing, and can be set up on either side of the court. The "two-man" weakside offense consists of a guard at the top, and a player at the weakside elbow-extended area. Players can interchange, but it's usually best to have two post and three perimeter players. Gels stresses, "unlike a free-lance motion offense, players should be looking to fill the five spots. But like a motion offense, players read and react to the defense without having to call set plays."  So what we really have are 3 guys in the sideline triangle at any given time and 2 guys on the weakside, and players moving from spot-to-spot, assuming the role of the spot they assume. Looking at the Triangle that way, I do not see how people on here say the Triangle only uses 3 of your 5 players on the court. Unless the SIM took the Triangle in name only, that would not be the case. I am very interested in hearing any and all observations HD coaches have made about the effect of high PG distribution on offensive team performance.

mduncanhogs -- Isn't the PG in the Triangle in a great position to be a high scorer because after the PG passes, he can sprint or drift to the corner, then going to the corner, getting open shots or eventually coming off a corner pick-and-roll if the ball gets there? Looking forward to you, and anyone else, dropping some knowledge.
2/11/2014 1:38 PM
p.s. And yet, although I have a high career winning percentage, and make the NT nearly every season, I can't seem to make the leap to perennial Final 4 contender. So I am not pretending to have any answers, just questions based upon thinking about how the Triangle should work, and observations from implementing it in HD.
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