Skip to content

Kentucky Sports Radio

University of Kentucky Basketball, Football, and Recruiting news brought to you in the most ridiculous manner possible.

Luke Winn talks Davis’ defense

Whatchu talkin' bout, Luke Winn?
I love shots like this where you can see the real time reactions of the people in the crowd.

I’m a big fan of Luke Winn, but I think he might be stretching a bit this time. For those of you unfamiliar, Luke Winn looks like the smartest kid in your fourth grade class and is a college basketball writer for Sports Illustrated who puts out a weekly power ranking heavy on numerical analysis. It’s cool stuff. This week he used defensive statistics compiled by Jonathon Leverenz of A Sea of Blue to analyze UK’s defensive efficiency with freshman phenom Anthony Davis on and off the court. Anyone who watched the Indiana game could tell you that UK is not as good a defensive team when Davis is sitting than when he is out there swatting everything in his vicinity. However, the numbers show that’s not the case. Let’s look at the chart:


This chart shows the point allowed per possession by Kentucky in each game of the season with the number of defensive possessions Anthony Davis spent in and out of the game. If the margin is less than zero then it means that the defense allowed less points when Davis was off the court. As you can see, the chart shows that in three games (Marist, Penn State and North Carolina) UK allowed less points with Davis on the bench and the total is also barely less than zero. This is where we can easily call BS on this numerical analysis. Marist and Penn State were ridiculous blow outs and the numbers in the North Carolina game are skewed because the Heels damage was done beyond the three point line. They only scored 14 points in the paint. Winn also acknowledges that in the games against top-25 competition, UK’s defense was an impressive +0.394 with Davis on the court. The numbers against Indiana and Kansas are especially impressive. In those two games, the team was an unbelievable 0.517 points better with Davis on the floor.

While the overall defensive numbers show that UK allows slightly less points with Davis on the bench, I think we can all agree that it’s a much better thing when Davis is out there going for triple-doubles. Once we get into SEC play, look for the defensive efficiency numbers to shift very much in the favor of when Davis is on the court.

Article written by Matthew Hays

13 Comments for Luke Winn talks Davis’ defense

    6:23 pm December 16, 2011 Permalink

    UK’s D is better statistically when Davis is on the bench because Dicky V said IU failed to feed Zeller when Davis was out.

  2. wow
    6:25 pm December 16, 2011 Permalink

    People get too caught up in numbers. He plays 30+ min a game. Of course they are going to score more when hes in there

  3. HeelsAdjusted
    6:26 pm December 16, 2011 Permalink

    Agree with your deconstruction of the data with only one exception: I would not minimize the UNC data. It may simply be that when forced to give up the paint, they have the three point shooters to actually be more efficient offensively that when they go inside — basically Davis’ presence which forced UNC to take more outside shots actually worked against us.

  4. Matthew Hays
    7:03 pm December 16, 2011 Permalink

    3) Great point. Had UNC shot their average from the three point line, then the numbers would have shown the defense with Davis to be more effective. I assumed the phenomenal outside shooting that day to be an anomaly. North Carolina, like most teams, would rather rely on consistent inside play – play that was disrupted by Davis. That’s all just conjecture on my part though.

  5. nassau65
    7:05 pm December 16, 2011 Permalink

    BTI has an alias?

  6. bimbo
    7:07 pm December 16, 2011 Permalink


  7. RidgeRunner
    7:37 pm December 16, 2011 Permalink

    Interesting breakdown. I mean we all know that we are better with Ant in there but to see numbers illustrate it like that —puts it in real perspective.

  8. Oh god
    7:57 pm December 16, 2011 Permalink

    Clearly, BTI is still writing for KSR

  9. RidgeRunner
    8:10 pm December 16, 2011 Permalink

    8…nah, the sentences before the numbers clearly make sense. lol

  10. nassau65
    9:13 pm December 16, 2011 Permalink

    i like 7 & 7

  11. nassau65
    9:14 pm December 16, 2011 Permalink

    shock top too.

  12. Holler Baller
    8:03 am December 17, 2011 Permalink

    There are a couple of good crowd reactions in the picture.

    It looks like some of them hadn’t unfolded their arms the whole game. OK maybe at half time.

  13. Lou eaton
    10:48 am December 17, 2011 Permalink

    Davis is not what’s killing us on defense! When we allow two consecutive games with teams shooting close to 60% from the three then THAT”‘s a problem! Kidd-Gilchrist should be the role model for this team both on offense and defense period..