A Beginner’s Guide to Advanced NBA Stats


The perfect statistic doesn’t exist. However, the numbers obtained from calculating certain aspects in a game will still bring success in terms of NBA Basketball betting. In most cases, the more studying a bettor does, the better they perform.

But still, a lot of people say that sports are nothing more than the “human aspect.” That means outcomes can not be accurately predicted due to uncontrollable circumstances. Those that analyze numbers and individual skills of the players and teams, however, tend to increase their experience in terms of the game and how to predict its outcome correctly.

Because of this, those bettors tend to cash in more than those who don’t consider statistics. You want to dive into statistics to get more wins. But how? First, you have to know the basic statistics a team has to win. After that, you must immerse yourself into more advanced ones to look deeper into each team and see their win probability. That said, here are some of the advanced statistics you have to examine before you bet.

Player Efficiency Rating (PER)

One of the most commonly used statistics in the NBA is the player efficiency rating (PER). Former ESPN analytics guru John Hollinger popularized it.

However, a lot of people have the misconception that the PER of a particular player is the overall performance of that player.

The PER of a player is measured by his per-minute productivity. It takes their positive impacts and subtracts their negative impacts, “returning a per-minute rating of the player’s performance”. To match the player’s performance, it is adjusted for both playing time and pace when compared to other players’ PER.

The best players can be usually seen at the top of the list. As mentioned earlier, however, a player’s PER is not his overall performance of his career.

Assist Percentage

One of the most common advanced statistics in the NBA is the assist percentage. It is defined as an estimate of the percentage of teammate field goals a player assisted while he was on the floor. AST% is one of the easiest stats to measure. It is a tempo-free stat, meaning it doesn’t require to be adjusted based on a player’s pace and volume in the game.

While counting the number of assists a player has during the game is good, looking more into the assist percentage of a player tells more about his passing skills. The assist statistic has two main factors: the amount of time the player is in the court and the pace his team plays.

The assist percentage is useful to have when it comes to fast-paced teams, like the Washington Wizards or Miami Heat. A fast-paced team tends to have more offensive plays, which also increases the number of assists per game and minute.

Pace Factor

Speaking of pace, the pace factor of a team is also useful to have when deciding to bet on a particular team. It measures the average number of possessions the team has during a game. Possessions are typically defined as the team’s offensive possessions.

A possession ends when the team scores, fouls or when a violation/turnover happens. This information is especially helpful for bettors who like betting on totals because teams with more possessions during the game tend to score more points.

If you base the team’s pace factor by looking at its previous season, however, there is a big chance that you’ll incorrectly measure it and potentially lose. This is because teams almost always change their personnel every season. If the team retained their players from the last season, though, they’ll most likely have the same pace.

Win Shares

Win shares are complicated. They measure a player’s contribution to their team’s win total. They use a formula that estimates a player’s offensive win shares by utilizing his produced marginal points and offensive possessions throughout the season and dividing it to his marginal points in every win.

Defensive win shares are computed by utilizing each player’s marginal defense and dividing it with his marginal points in every win. When a player has an outstanding win share total, it means he contributes a lot to his team’s wins. This is useful info when looking into a team’s win rate.


Looking into a team’s statistics isn’t enough. You also have to see every player’s statistics to predict how a team will perform accurately. These stats are easily accessible for bettors. That said, research is inevitable if you want to win more bets. Digging deeper will set you up for better success.

About TLSM Staff

Articles by TLSM staff.

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