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2015-16 Simple Projection System Projections Are Live

14th October 2015

It's hard to believe, but we're under 2 weeks away from the start of the NBA season. That means it's also time to unveil the SPS projections for 2015-16!

What is Simple Projection System? Simply put, SPS is a very basic method for projecting basketball stats. SPS weighs the last 3 seasons by a factor of 6/3/1 and factors age and a little regression to the mean to project what a player will do in the upcoming season (you can read a more detailed explanation of how it's calculated on this page). If this rings a bell, it may be because you're a baseball fan who is familiar with Tom Tango's Marcel projection system. This quote from Tango pretty succinctly describes his projection system's raison d'etre (and why it's called "Marcel"):

"[I]t is the most basic forecasting system you can have, that uses as little intelligence as possible. So, that's the allusion to the monkey."

SPS applies the same general principles to basketball, though the name has no connection to a 1990s sitcom. As the name would suggest, SPS' calculation is relatively simple, but it also does a pretty decent job and holds its own, even compared to more sophisticated projection systems. Of course, SPS can't take into account contextual changes such as a player moving to a new team, changing coaches, or getting new teammates, but it's a fun starting point as we gear up for another NBA season. It's also important to note that SPS' numbers are per 36 minutes.

So, without further ado, here's who SPS projects to lead the NBA in points per 36 minutes:

Per 36 Minutes
Rk Player PTS ?
1 Kevin Durant 27.8
2 Russell Westbrook 27.4
3 James Harden 25.6
4 LeBron James 24.9
5 Carmelo Anthony 24.7
6 DeMarcus Cousins 24.6
7 Stephen Curry 24.6
8 Anthony Davis 23.0
9 LaMarcus Aldridge 22.8
10 Blake Griffin 22.7
Provided by View Original Table
Generated 10/14/2015.


SPS is looking at strong bounceback seasons for KD and Carmelo, while expecting James Harden to outscore Stephen Curry again. Here's the rebound leaders, where SPS projects big things for Hassan Whiteside following his 2014-15 breakout:

Per 36 Minutes
Rk Player Type TRB ?
1 Andre Drummond Projected 15.4
2 DeAndre Jordan Projected 14.5
3 Hassan Whiteside Projected 14.2
4 Reggie Evans Projected 13.4
5 Omer Asik Projected 13.3
6 DeMarcus Cousins Projected 12.9
7 Rudy Gobert Projected 12.7
8 Tyson Chandler Projected 12.5
9 Thomas Robinson Projected 12.5
10 Dwight Howard Projected 12.4
Provided by View Original Table
Generated 10/14/2015.


Finally, here are the projected leaders in assists per 36 minutes:

Per 36 Minutes
Rk Player AST ?
1 Chris Paul 10.3
2 Rajon Rondo 9.5
3 John Wall 9.4
4 Ricky Rubio 9.3
5 Ty Lawson 9.0
6 Kendall Marshall 9.0
7 Russell Westbrook 8.4
8 Stephen Curry 8.1
9 Jeff Teague 7.8
10 Brandon Jennings 7.7
Provided by View Original Table
Generated 10/14/2015.


If you're anything like me, you were probably surprised to see Kendall Marshall there, but his per 36 assist numbers have been crazy good for the last 3 seasons.

In case you're curious about how SPS has done in the past, we have tables for SPS going back to 1980-81 showing what the projections would be and how they'd compare to the actual results. For example, here's how the projections for last season's two MVP frontrunners, Stephen Curry and James Harden, compared to their actual 2014-15 numbers. Some things, like Harden's 3-pt % or Steph's turnovers, it got almost exactly right. Other stats, like both players' field goal attempts, were a little further off:

Per 36 Minutes Shooting
Stephen Curry Projected 8.0 17.0 3.2 7.4 3.6 4.1 0.7 4.2 7.6 1.6 3.4 22.7 .469 .437 .886
Stephen Curry Actual 9.0 18.5 3.9 8.9 4.2 4.6 0.8 4.7 8.5 2.2 3.4 26.2 .487 .443 .914
James Harden Projected 7.0 15.4 2.2 5.9 7.5 8.7 0.8 4.6 5.6 1.5 3.3 23.8 .457 .374 .861
James Harden Actual 7.8 17.8 2.5 6.7 8.6 10.0 0.9 5.5 6.8 1.9 3.9 26.8 .440 .375 .868
Provided by View Original Table
Generated 10/14/2015.


And here are the SPS projections for Michael Jordan's last season with the Bulls, just because:

Per 36 Minutes Shooting
350 Michael Jordan Projected 10.3 21.5 1.2 3.3 5.7 6.8 1.4 5.8 4.0 1.7 2.1 27.6 .481 .384 .828
351 Michael Jordan Actual 10.0 21.4 0.3 1.4 6.4 8.2 1.5 5.4 3.2 1.6 2.1 26.7 .465 .238 .784
Provided by View Original Table
Generated 10/14/2015.


You can also see a player's 2015-16 projections at the top of their player page. Here's Carmelo Anthony's:

Per 36 Minutes Shooting
8.9 19.9 1.8 4.8 5.1 6.2 1.8 7.0 2.9 1.0 0.5 2.4 2.6 24.7 .445 .371 .822 .139
Provided by View Original Table
Generated 10/14/2015.


While you're getting ready for the season, don't forget that we also have the full preseason schedule with box scores, an updated free agent tracker with all of this summer's big and small player moves, a detailed injury report, and of course the most comprehensive basketball stats database on the web!

Posted in Announcement,, Statgeekery | Comments Off on 2015-16 Simple Projection System Projections Are Live

Find Liga ACB Statistics Back to 1983-84 on Basketball Reference

13th October 2015

With the 2015-16 Liga ACB basketball season is underway in Spain, we'd like to make a couple of announcements.

First of all, you can find box scores, standings, player and team stats at our Liga ACB landing page. As you'll see, Barcelona's Ante Tomic got off to a hot start with 23 points on 10-for-11 shooting in a win over Zaragoza. Tomic was drafted by the Jazz in 2008 and they still retain his NBA rights. You can check out some of the other top players in this table with sortable stats for every player in the league. Don't forget to bookmark this page to keep up with perhaps the world's premier basketball league outside of the NBA all season long.

Our other big announcement is that we have added statistics for past Liga ACB seasons all the way back to 1983-84, which was the first season in the modern history of the league. This means we now have awesome things like vintage Arvydas Sabonis stats:



This addition also gives us statistics for Drazen Petrovic's season in Spain, the year before he started his NBA career in Portland. That year, he set a still-standing league record with 1,026 points in the regular season. You can access all sorts of leaderboards for various Euro leagues via this link. Among the cool nuggets you can uncover is the fact that the legendary Oscar Schmidt still owns the league record for three-pointers made in a single regular season with 160, with one of the most energetic players in NBA history coming in second on the list.

We hope you enjoy this addition to our site. College basketball fans will likely enjoy seeing statistics for college stars they had lost track of after they disappeared from the NBA. Now that these new pages have been created, we will continually be working on linking them up with already existing NBA pages for players who played in both leagues and/or have pages on our college site.

Posted in Announcement,, Data, Features, History | Comments Off on Find Liga ACB Statistics Back to 1983-84 on Basketball Reference

Introducing NHL Expected +/-

7th October 2015

Hockey Reference is excited to introduce a new advanced hockey statistic we're calling Expected +/-. This new metric, utilizing league-wide shot location data, shows what we'd expect a player's +/- to be, based on where his team's shots and his opponent's shots came from while we has on the ice in even strength situations. The expected value of these shots is based upon league-wide shooting percentages from the various locations.

We have calculated the statistic for 2014-15 thus far, and will be calculating it for seasons moving forward, as well. As we get more shot location data, these values will eventually be based on three-year rolling averages, but as of now, 2014-15 is based entirely upon 2014-15 shot location data. When we say three-year rolling averages, what we mean is that, eventually, 2015-16 Expected +/- will be based upon shooting percentages from various locations on the ice from 2014-15 to 2016-17.

Here's the 2014-15 leaders:

Rk Player Age Tm Pos GP E+/- ?
1 Patrice Bergeron 29 BOS C 81 21.5
2 Nick Leddy 23 NYI D 78 19.6
3 Anders Lee 24 NYI C 76 19.6
4 John Tavares 24 NYI C 82 19.6
5 Anton Stralman 28 TBL D 82 17.6
6 Ryan Strome 21 NYI C 81 17.5
7 Nikita Kucherov 21 TBL RW 82 17.2
8 Brad Marchand 26 BOS LW 77 17.1
9 Brock Nelson 23 NYI C 82 17.1
10 Joe Thornton 35 SJS C 78 17.1
Provided by View Original Table
Generated 10/7/2015.

As you can see, the Expected +/- leaderboard differs quite a bit from the actual +/- leaderboard, with only Nikita Kucherov appearing in the top ten of both. Expected +/- can potentially help identify some of the luck factor in raw +/- numbers:

Rk Player Age Tm Pos GP +/- ?
1 Nikita Kucherov 21 TBL RW 82 38
2 Max Pacioretty 26 MTL LW 80 38
3 Tyler Johnson 24 TBL C 77 33
4 Ondrej Palat 23 TBL LW 75 31
5 Jonathan Toews 26 CHI C 81 30
6 Rick Nash 30 NYR LW 79 29
7 Jason Garrison 30 TBL D 70 27
8 Vladimir Tarasenko 23 STL RW 77 27
9 Derek Stepan 24 NYR C 68 26
10 Blake Wheeler 28 WPG RW 79 26
Provided by View Original Table
Generated 10/7/2015.

Since this metric considers the quality of shots (or at least their point of origin), it has an advantage over blunter instruments, like Corsi, which consider quantity, but not quality. However, unlike Corsi, Expected +/- does not include info on shots that weren't on goal, that were blocked, etc. So we see the stats as good complements for each other.

Currently, Expected +/- can be found for all players on the advanced tab of the 2014-15 Skaters register. Additionally, it can found in the Miscellaneous table on player pages.

On a game level, we have added shot charts to our box scores, as well. In the future, we plan to add heat maps showing shooting percentages by location for players, goalies, teams and league seasons. We will also be incorporating Expected +/- into our Player Advanced Stats Finder to allow for customized searches on this metric.

Finally, we would like to thank Wesley Yue for his valuable contributions to this concept.

Posted in Advanced Stats, Announcement, Data, | Comments Off on Introducing NHL Expected +/-

NFL Players of the Week Added to Pro Football Reference

18th September 2015

We've made a recent addition to Pro Football Reference: NFL Players of the Week back to 1997. This data can be accessed from our NFL/AFL Awards Index. The winners each week include an offensive, defensive and special teams player from each conference. Additionally, these winners have been added to the pages we have recapping each week in the NFL. Finally, a summary of all of these awards has been added to player pages underneath that stat tables, so you can see a list of all of the Player of the Week Awards for LaDainian Tomlinson (or any other player):

Screen Shot 2015-09-18 at 10.36.57 AM

It should come as no surprise that Peyton Manning is the leader in Player of the Week Awards since 1997, with 27. Next is Tom Brady, with 24, followed by Drew Brees, with 20.

As we find time for additional research in our collection of old NFL Record & Fact Books, we hope to go back beyond 1997 with this data. Or, if you have this data and care to share it with us, please let us know.

Posted in Announcement, Awards, Data, History, | 1 Comment »

Michael Jordan high school, amateur, and exhibition game logs

15th September 2015


We recently published the game logs for Michael Jordan's high school, amateur, and NBA career, with every exhibition and charity game along the way.

This awesome feature is the product of research by author and hoops maven Todd Spehr (@toddspehr35). Todd had previously donated a decade of NBA All-Star Legends Game box scores to our site. Most recently, he is the author of Drazen: The Remarkable Life and Legacy of the Mozart of Basketball.

The records begin with Jordan's 1978-79 Junior Varsity effort with Wilmington, North Carolina's Laney High School, then continues with his varsity career and high-school showcase games like the McDonald's All-American game. Along the way, it includes every game of his UNC career, and every pre-season and international effort, including his Dream Team performances, and much much more. It really is an awesome effort, so we've included a permanent link at the top of our main Jordan page so that it's always easy to find.



Posted in Announcement,, CBB at Sports Reference | 1 Comment »

Find 2015 NFL Stats

10th September 2015

The Play Index is the name we use to refer to PFR's collection of top-notch research tools. Read below for more information on some of the applications we have made available to you.
Game Play Finder

Search all plays from 1994 to today to find performances that match your criteria. Answer questions like…

Player Season Finder

Search through player season stats spanning from 1920 to today for single seasons or combined seasons that match your criteria. Answer questions like…

The answers to these questions and many, many more are at your fingertips using the Player Season Finder.

Player Game Finder

Search through player game logs spanning from 1960 to today for games that match your criteria. You can find…

With the Player Game Finder, the possibilities are almost endless.

Player Comparison Tool

Select up to six offensive skill position players to compare single season stats, career stats, or a span of years. Compare…

Trade Finder Tool

Find NFL trades from 1994 to now, by team, draft round, draft pick, player position and more. Find…

Player Touchdown Finder

Search through every touchdown scored from 1920 to today for scores that match your criteria. Did you know…

Impress your friends and come up with your own "Did You Know" with a little help from the Player Touchdown Finder.

Team Game Finder

Find team games or seasons matching certain criteria. Did you know…

Player Streak Finder

Find the longest player streaks matching certain criteria. Did you know...

Team Streak Finder

Find the longest team streaks matching certain criteria. Did you know...

Super Bowl Play Finder

Search through every play in Super Bowl History.

Draft Finder

Search through every NFL and AFL draft pick.
Boxscore Search Tools

Find head-to-head results and also find games matching a particular score.

Posted in Announcement, Data, Features, Play Index, | 2 Comments »

2015 NFL Storylines

9th September 2015

With the 2015 NFL season kicking off this week, we thought we'd visit some storylines for this season as a way of introducing some of the research tools you can find on Follow the hyperlinked historical notes to the queries on our site and see if you can re-create them. If you're wondering about how we did anything, just ask us!

Quarterbacks Chasing History

Peyton Manning

Rk From To W L T
1 Brett Favre 1991 2010 186 112 0
2 Peyton Manning 1998 2014 179 77 0
3 Tom Brady 2000 2014 160 47 0
4 John Elway* 1983 1998 148 82 1
5 Dan Marino* 1983 1999 147 93 0
6 Fran Tarkenton* 1961 1978 124 109 6
7 Johnny Unitas* 1956 1973 118 64 4
8 Drew Brees 2001 2014 117 84 0
9 Joe Montana* 1979 1994 117 47 0
10 Terry Bradshaw* 1970 1983 107 51 0
Provided by View Original Table
Generated 9/1/2015.

Drew Brees

Tom Brady

Ben Roethlisberger

Aaron Rodgers

Russell Wilson

Andrew Luck

Adrian Peterson Returns

It's been a year since Peterson last took the field in a 34-6 Week 1 win over the Rams last season. Few fans will be rooting for Peterson in 2015, but he'll likely continue to climb the record books.

Golden Receivers

Throwing the football has never been more popular, and it has probably never been easier. Go ahead and check this list of the players with most receiving yards per game in NFL history. That right, the top five are all active players (or at least kind of active in the case of Josh Gordon). And this doesn't even include players like Odell Beckham, Jr. who don't yet have enough games played to qualify.

Sustained Success

The Patriots posted their 12th straight double-digit win season in 2014. That's the 2nd-longest such streak in NFL history. Only the 49ers (from 1983-98) have posted a longer streak. If head coach Bill Belichick can get his team to repeat, he could become the first head coach to win five Super Bowls.

Rk Tm Seasons W L T From To
1 San Francisco 49ers 16 191 63 1 1983 1998 See all seasons »
2 New England Patriots 12* 150 42 0 2003 2014 See all seasons »
3 Indianapolis Colts 9 109 35 0 2002 2010 See all seasons »
4 Dallas Cowboys 7 80 26 0 1975 1981 See all seasons »
5 Dallas Cowboys 6 64 19 1 1968 1973 See all seasons »
Dallas Cowboys 6 70 26 0 1991 1996 See all seasons »
Miami Dolphins 6 67 16 1 1970 1975 See all seasons »
Los Angeles Rams 6 66 19 1 1973 1978 See all seasons »
Provided by View Original Table
Generated 9/1/2015.


New Extra Point Rules

If you send your kicking team out for extra points, you'll now have to snap the ball from the 15, rather than 2. Curious how this impacts strategy? Check out our Game Player Finder to find all FGAs with the LOS at the 15 over the last 5 seasons. You can also use this tool to search for 2-point conversion tries over the same span. Which approach is the better bet?

Track History All Season Long

Bookmark our NFL Milestone Watch page and check every week for which records might fall.

Posted in Announcement, Data, Features, History, Play Index, | Comments Off on 2015 NFL Storylines

Introducing New Pages for Non-MLB Statistics

4th September 2015

As you explore Baseball-Reference, you may notice a bit of a re-imagining of how we are now presenting non-MLB statistics on the site. Where we once had fragmented sections for player stats in various non-Major leagues (minors, Japan, Cuba, etc), we have now combined everything into a single page showing the player's professional history. This new page presents all of a player's career statistics on one page and makes it easier than ever to track a player's career trajectory and journey in one place. On player pages where is used to say "minors" it now lists a variety of levels at which the player played (like in the below image from Minnie Minoso's page). Clicking that link will lead you to a listing of that player's career at every level of play.

Minoso Register2


Through these pages, you can now find statistics for the following levels of play:

  • MLB since 1871
  • Complete affiliated Minor Leagues back to 1877
  • Negro Leagues from 1902-1960
  • Japanese baseball from 1936 to present
  • KBO baseball since 1982
  • Cuban National Series from 1961-2014
  • Arizona Fall League since 1992
  • Coverage of various Winter Leagues back to 2003 (and also 2000, 1999 and 1997)
  • Various independent leagues as far back at the late 19th century

As an example of how this all works, let's take a look at the all-levels career of the well-traveled Minnie Minoso: As you can see, the stat tables look like the ones you've grown comfortable with on our site. But instead of just being for a specific level of play, you can see Minoso's stats from MLB, the minors, the Negro Leagues, foreign leagues and independent leagues. Using the "show/hide" buttons atop the stats table, you can isolate or exclude statistics from various levels of play. Additionally, levels at which Minoso played more than one season will be summed beneath the table (as well as his all-level totals). Below you will see an abbreviated version of the table layout, displaying Minoso's long career. If you're wondering what some of the columns represent, hold your mouse over the column header and a description will pop up.

Year Age AgeDif Tm Lg Lev Aff G PA
1946 20 New York Cubans NNL NgM 90
1947 21 New York Cubans NNL NgM 106
1948 22 -3.1 Dayton CENL A CLE 11
1948 22 New York Cubans NNL NgM 78
1949 23 -6.7 San Diego PCL AAA CLE 137 598
1949 23 -5.8 Cleveland AL MLB CLE 9 20
1950 24 -6.4 San Diego PCL AAA CLE 169 671
1951 25 -4.0 2 Teams AL MLB CHW-CLE 146 622
1951 25 -4.0 Cleveland AL MLB CLE 8 17
1951 25 -4.0 Chicago AL MLB CHW 138 605
1952 26 -2.7 Chicago AL MLB CHW 147 668
1953 27 -1.7 Chicago AL MLB CHW 151 655
1954 28 -0.4 Chicago AL MLB CHW 153 675
1955 29 0.5 Chicago AL MLB CHW 139 615
1956 30 1.6 Chicago AL MLB CHW 151 665
Year Age AgeDif Tm Lg Lev Aff G PA
1957 31 2.3 Chicago AL MLB CHW 153 678
1958 32 3.5 Cleveland AL MLB CLE 149 638
1959 33 4.2 Cleveland AL MLB CLE 148 650
1960 34 5.5 Chicago AL MLB CHW 154 670
1961 35 6.8 Chicago AL MLB CHW 152 635
1962 36 8.1 St. Louis NL MLB STL 39 108
1963 37 9.3 Washington AL MLB WSA 109 363
1964 38 12.4 Indianapolis PCL AAA CHW 52 201
1964 38 10.5 Chicago AL MLB CHW 30 38
1965 39 17.0 Jalisco MEX AA
1966 40 Jalisco MEX AA 107
1967 41 2 Teams 2 Lgs A-AAA 49
1967 41 Orizaba MXSE A 36
1967 41 17.0 Jalisco MEX AAA 13
1968 42 2 Teams 2 Lgs A-AAA 78
1968 42 Puerto Mexico MXSE A 56
1968 42 12.0 Jalisco MEX AAA 22
Year Age AgeDif Tm Lg Lev Aff G PA
1969 43 2 Teams 2 Lgs A-AAA 110
1969 43 Puerto Penasco MXNO A 74
1969 43 12.0 Jalisco MEX AAA 36
1970 44 12.0 Union Laguna MEX AAA
1971 45 12.0 Union Laguna MEX AAA
1972 46 12.0 Union Laguna MEX AAA
1973 47 12.0 Union Laguna MEX AAA
1976 50 22.5 Chicago AL MLB CHW 3 8
1980 54 26.0 Chicago AL MLB CHW 2 2
1993 67 41.5 St. Paul NORL Ind 1 1
2003 -- 50.3 St. Paul NORL Ind 1 1
MLB (17 seasons) MLB 1835 7710
Minors (4 seasons) Minors 369 1510
NLB (3 seasons) NLB 274
Foreign (9 seasons) Foreign 344
Other (2 seasons) Other 2 2
All Levels (32 Seasons) 2550 9496
A (3 seasons) Foreign 166
AA (2 seasons) Foreign 107
AAA (3 seasons) Minors 358 1470
AAA (7 seasons) Foreign 71
Provided by View Original Table
Generated 9/2/2015.


Minoso provides a good example due to the variety of levels he played at. You'll also notice that for more obscure leagues there are sometimes empty rows of data. These are instances where we know a player was on a team in a given season, but we simply don't have the statistics. As a result, incomplete totals will be underlined in the tables (or just left blank when there is no data).

While the most obvious change may be to the player pages as demonstrated above, we've also created a new Professional Baseball History landing page, which will provide navigation to a wealth of non-MLB content. On this page, you'll see the left side of the page is dedicated to minor league data, while the center column directs to Japanese leagues and the right column contains links for Negro Leagues, Cuban National Series and the Korean Baseball Organization. Underneath this section you'll also find quick links to many of the minor leagues (broken down by level), as well as various fall/winter leagues and independent leagues.

We hope you find this new layout helpful. Please let us know if you have any questions or feedback.

Posted in Announcement,, Data | 7 Comments »

Find 2015 College Football Stats

3rd September 2015

With the 2015 college football season upon us, just a few reminders on where to find info for this season:

If you have any questions about where to find something or if you encounter any issues, please let us know here.

Posted in Announcement, CFB at Sports Reference, Data, Features, Play Index | Comments Off on Find 2015 College Football Stats

Sports Reference Welcomes Jonah Gardner to Our Staff

7th August 2015

Jonah Gardner joined the Sports Reference crew (working out of Philly) a few weeks ago as our Social Media Coordinator bringing SR's head count to seven full-time staff. Jonah brings experience working in social media for The Human Solution in Austin and also for several musical acts and record labels. He's an Atlanta Braves fan, backs Everton FC (the Braves of the EPL), and is a big NBA fan (see his Kevin Garnett Trade Voltron). Jonah will be leading our change on social media for Sports Reference and you'll see us on much more active on twitter and joining additional platforms in the near future.

Posted in Announcement,,, CBB at Sports Reference, CFB at Sports Reference, expire21d,, Olympics at S-R,, Uncategorized | Comments Off on Sports Reference Welcomes Jonah Gardner to Our Staff