Quantifying the Contribution of NBA Coaches using Fixed Effects

Quantifying the Contribution of NBA Coaches using Fixed Effects

The fixed effects are quite large for some coaches — larger than the Win Share metric for superstars on All-Star seasons. Values range from -25 to +21, with the mean being 0.15. This means that a value of +10.0 indicates that the coach generates about 10 additional wins per season relative to the mean.

Why coaches?

Think of a successful sports dynasty and you will find an overachieving coach behind it. In the NFL, for example, it’s hard to speak of Tom Brady’s success without mentioning Bill Belichick’s genius. In soccer, It was Pep Guardiola’s masterful tactics that unlocked Messi’s talent and turned Barcelona F.C. into a European juggernaut. Few can question Jurgen Klopp’s transformative impact on Liverpool, which has become one of the most powerful attacks in EPL history almost overnight. And who is to say whether Michael Jordan would’ve become _a 6-time _championwithout Phil Jackson’s triangle offense?

If you’re still skeptical, consider that only** 4 coaches have won more than **60 percent of NBA championships over the past 40 seasons.

I personally experienced the coaching effect as a professional basketball player in Lebanon. As I trained my way up to a national team selection, I noticed that some coaches were able to derive the best out of me. They made the game easier (and more fun) and delivered results no matter the circumstances and roster compositions. I’ve also played on teams where, despite tremendous talent, our performance was no different than that of a mere pickup squad.

data-science coaching basketball economics sports

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