Interview question from an NBA analyst

13 Nov

I have been trying hard to get an internship with an analyst in the NBA or NHL.  Really, basketball or hockey would be great.  I contacted someone through a contact on LinkedIn about an open internship.

I was pretty lucky….I got a response!  I haven’t had much success with cold calling.  However, analysts seem to be very open to discussing their jobs and getting others involved.  A very gracious group of people!

Anyway, the person I spoke with posed this question to see my train of thought: if the 2-point field goal percentage of a team goes from 47% to 48%. how many more games would they win?

My short answer without all of the wonky details….a team would generally get one more possession a game and potentially make an additional defensive stop.  Average out over a season, it would be the potential of another 2.5 points per game or so.  After looking through this team’s last season record, the team could have won one or two more games.  Not for this team in particular, but generally, this could be the difference between the playoffs or golf season; an away five seed or a home four seed.

When looking at a team, I suppose you have to ask if they need a tweak or an overhaul.  One more basket a game (when there are 100 shots or less, which is always) would move a team’s field goal percentage a point or more.  If a tweak is needed, getting two more points a game could be everything over the course of a season.  If an overhaul is needed, you’ll still get your two points, but at what price?

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One Response to “Interview question from an NBA analyst”

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Wednesday #MoneyPuck post. Predicting winners and losers. « Sport Exec in Training - November 14, 2012

    […] note, and off topic (slightly)….I have been writing about hockey a lot…then I wrote a post about basketball yesterday and got just a little love.  There seems to be a low correlation between hockey love and […]

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