Required Reading

The Basics, courtesy of Arturo’s Silly Little Stats.

(One hundred percent of the credit for everything that follows this sentence belongs to NBeh? A fantastic blog and part of the Wages of Wins Network.)

The obvious places to start: The Wages of Wins and Stumbling on Wins. Many of your gut reactions and initial questions have been addressed in these two books. I don’t make a cent by pointing you to these books; I recommend them to you because they are, in essence, the foundation of the Wages of Wins Network.

This page is filled with required readings for those who are not familiar with Wins Produced (WP). Please read the following posts (accumulated from various Wages of Wins Network writers – most notably David Berri) before you try to comment on the veracity of WP:


  1. Winning in basketball
  2. Shooting and WP
  3. What Wins Produced says and what it does not say
  4. Does Wins Produced overvalue rebounds?
  5. Wins Produced vs PER
  6. Correlation between WP and PER and wins
  7. PER, Beasley, Boozer, and Odom
  8. 2008-09 Overrated players
  9. 2008-09 Underrated players
  10. Win Score
  11. Wins Produced vs. Win Score
  12. Win Score vs. Game Score
  13. Why Adjusted plus/minus is not a good metric
  14. A guide to evaluating models
  15. A comment about model building
  16. Strength of schedule does not affect teams wins (most years, anyways)
  17. Bench players don’t always play against weaker opponents


  1. How to calculate WP
  2. Defense and WP
  3. PAWSmin

FAQs and Common Criticisms

  • Doesn’t WP overvalue rebounding?

No. Please read basics #4.

  • Doesn’t WP undervalue scorers?

No. “Scorers” who score their points efficiently do well in WP. Inefficient “scorers” – that is, players who take a lot of shots to score their points – do poorly. Please read basics #5-8.

  • WP is wrong because it says that [insert player here] is better than [insert player here].

When you base a model or metric on your preconceived notions you are making a mistake. Please read basics #3 and basics #14-15.

  • Why use WP instead of PER?

WP is more highly correlated to wins and PER rewards inefficient scorers. Please read basics #5-7.

2 thoughts on “Required Reading

  1. Pingback: Why another Pistons blog? | Pistons by the Numbers

  2. Pingback: A Wins Produced perspective on Lawrence Frank | Pistons by the Numbers

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