Today Forbe’s magazine released its list of the NBA’s most overpaid players, and despite the show Carmelo Anthony has put on the past couple of nights, he still tops the list.
Here’s how Forbes explains the statistical analysis behind Melo’s top rating:
Advanced metrics show that in the NBA, scoring is overvalued. Stats compiled by David Berri, economist and author of “Stumbling on Wins,” rates players’ contribution to wins not only by scoring but shooting percentage, assists, rebounds and turnovers, all measured against opportunities to accumulate those stats (a faster paced game with more shots equals more rebound opportunities, etc.).
Assists lead directly to points, and every rebound gives your team a possession, which means a chance to score. Durant, in short, is an efficient player whose numbers translate into wins for his club. The same is true for LeBron James, Chris Paul and Tim Duncan. But not for Carmelo Anthony. And that’s why, at a 2012-13 salary of $19.4 million, Anthony tops our list as the NBA’s most overpaid player.
Rounding off the top five are: Charlotte Bobcats’ guard Ben Gordon ($12.4 million; -2.1 win shares), Brooklyn Nets guard Joe Johnson ($19.75 million; 1.5 win shares), Orlando Magic guard Helo Turkoglu ($11.8 million; -0.6 win shares), and Dallas Mavericks forward Dirk Nowitzki ($20.9 million; Win Shares 3.3).
I must say I appreciate the statistical foundation that gives this list credence. I’ve always valued a player who contributes to his team in balanced way more than one who can simply score the basket, and like the saying goes…Men Lie. Women Lie. Numbers Don’t.