Customer Reviews


24 Reviews
5 star:
 (13)
4 star:
 (6)
3 star:
 (4)
2 star:    (0)
1 star:
 (1)
 
 
 
 
 
Average Customer Review
Share your thoughts with other customers
Create your own review
 
 

The most helpful favorable review
The most helpful critical review


11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Valuable Tool
I have been using the formulas and ideas presented in Dean Oliver's book for the past three years. I was never a math fan, but my spreadsheets for calculating basketball statistics are the most complicated I have ever created and it was this book that started my obsession. The book inspired me with a fascination over a new way to look at the game and the players that...
Published on August 17, 2007 by Patrick Sheehy

versus
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Statistical over simplicity
As a statistician, and someone who also loves sports, I have totally enjoyed the "new" satistical approaches to sports stats, from tversky to moneyball to learning you should never punt. Sports arguments are often a lot more fun these days (e.g., 90 percent of the ESPN analysis on NBA draft night is how well the players scored the ball in college, when that appears...
Published on July 1, 2012 by Doctor Bob


‹ Previous | 1 2 3 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Valuable Tool, August 17, 2007
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Basketball on Paper: Rules and Tools for Performance Analysis (Paperback)
I have been using the formulas and ideas presented in Dean Oliver's book for the past three years. I was never a math fan, but my spreadsheets for calculating basketball statistics are the most complicated I have ever created and it was this book that started my obsession. The book inspired me with a fascination over a new way to look at the game and the players that bring it to life. Mr. Oliver's work was just a starting point and over the past few years I have added other formulas and other mathematical approaches to looking at the game, but I would not have gotten anywhere without this book. It is an essential tool in my toolbox for evaluating and enjoying the game of basketball.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Statistical over simplicity, July 1, 2012
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
As a statistician, and someone who also loves sports, I have totally enjoyed the "new" satistical approaches to sports stats, from tversky to moneyball to learning you should never punt. Sports arguments are often a lot more fun these days (e.g., 90 percent of the ESPN analysis on NBA draft night is how well the players scored the ball in college, when that appears statistically to be only a minor indicator of professional success.

The problem I have with much of the literature aimed at the general public though, is that is over simplifies the problems, and all to often takes away the argument by assumption. John Maynard Keynes taught us that the big problem with statistics is not the methods, it's having no way to validate the numbers we put in.

So here we have an assumed method of picking the best offensive and defensive teams in history, no discussion of why most of those teams did not win a championship, no discussion of alternative methods. We get probabilities of winning streaks, but only a couple paragraphs on problems with those stats. (player injuries as the only example.). What about the fact that NBA teams almost always lose the second game of back to back road games? What about teams tanking at the end of the season to improve draft position?

I appreciated large parts of this book, but also found myself deeply frustrated with it at points. There are better books out there for people who want to get started on modern sports statistics.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


15 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Mature Look At Pro Basketball, December 23, 2003
By 
Greg Thomas (Garden City, KS USA) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
Oliver's work shows a maturity that has been lacking from many basketball evaluation books--John Hollinger's "Basketball Prospectus" being another exception. Not only are players evaluated statistically but their roles on their teams are considered in context in relationship to their numbers. If you want to gain an understanding of basketball as perhaps you've never had before, and are willing to accept the ambiguous nature of numbers themselves, this is the book for you!
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars If you love stats and basketball..., August 19, 2005
By 
This is a great book for people who are both numbers geeks and basketball geeks. I wish that there was more of a focus on college basketball, but that's just me. The author even replied to a couple of my questions regarding some of the formulas via email. Highly recommended for a basketball fan intrigued by statistics and indexes.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Solid Analysis / Easy to understand, January 9, 2007
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Basketball on Paper: Rules and Tools for Performance Analysis (Paperback)
I thought it was an excellent book. The author was clearly very knowledgeable both as a basketball player and as a quantitative analyst. Probably this dual identity is also what allowed him to communicate the findings so well to non-analysts while preserving enough of the meat of the analysis for pure analysts to see where it would all lead to.

Best book on sports statistics that I've read.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This book changed how I watch college basketball, May 8, 2010
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Basketball on Paper: Rules and Tools for Performance Analysis (Paperback)
While Oliver's methods and approaches are all applied to the NBA game in this book, they nevertheless can be applied in whole to the collegiate game. After reading "Basketball on Paper" over the last year and watching the 2009-2010 college basketball season, I can truly say that this book has revolutionized how I view a basketball game -- all for the better.

Without giving away key premises, Oliver truly dives deep into the fundamentals of how a basketball game works to determine tools to evaluate how teams and players do just past the final score. Typical cliches are challenged -- some proven, some shown to be irrelevant -- as he puts a statistical and logical argument behind why the proposed approaches are superior. And I agree with his results. After focusing on them over the past year, I can truly say that this book has helped me further understand how and why a team wins just behind the final score. Diving into the box score alone can reveal hidden gems that you might not have thought about otherwise. If you're a stat nut, a basketball fanatic, or some sort of a combination of the two, this book is a definite must read.

Considering that this is one of the greatest books I've ever read, I'd say it is worthy of a five star rating.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best analytics book, August 6, 2012
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
Phenomenal book. By far the best analytic book out there. If you like basketball and want a further understanding of the game; this is the book for you.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


4.0 out of 5 stars Service by Amazon was perfect, on time and brand new condition, September 16, 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Basketball on Paper: Rules and Tools for Performance Analysis (Paperback)
Service by Amazon was perfect, on time and brand new condition. The book is interesting as I expected, and I beleive Oliver adds some wit and humor that helps in the drier sections, but the book tends to get a little listy. For example, it will show you the scorer's sheet for an entire game, when maybe only a half is necessary. Or it will give you the top 30 offenses of all-time, when a list of ten might be more managable. There are also some typos in the book that the editor should not have missed. All in all though, it's a great purchase and a very educational and interesting read.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


5.0 out of 5 stars Well worth the price and better yet well worth my own time to digest this ..., November 8, 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Basketball on Paper: Rules and Tools for Performance Analysis (Paperback)
If you are into a technical, mathematical analysis of basketball teams, then this book is a right fit for you. The author Dean Oliver is a genius with his presentation of various factors and rankings regarding teams and players from not only a current aspect but from also a historical perspective. This book obviously took a tremendous amount of time to produce with all of the ratings and graphs and formulas. Well worth the price and better yet well worth my own time to digest this book in its entirety.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


4.0 out of 5 stars Basketball for Geeks, August 25, 2010
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Basketball on Paper: Rules and Tools for Performance Analysis (Paperback)
If you are a numbers geek, want to write a paper that evaluates some area of basketball, or are looking to develop a way to evaluate what your team/ players contribute to the game, this book is for you. There an interesting chapter on the "best players ever"; but for the most part Dean Oliver does exactly what the title says; he gives us tools for performance analysis at a level of understanding and sophistication that only he can provide.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


‹ Previous | 1 2 3 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

Details

Basketball on Paper: Rules and Tools for Performance Analysis
Basketball on Paper: Rules and Tools for Performance Analysis by Dean Oliver (Paperback - November 1, 2004)
$18.95 $15.10
In stock but may require an extra 1-2 days to process.
Add to cart Add to wishlist
Search these reviews only
Send us feedback How can we make Amazon Customer Reviews better for you? Let us know here.