Five strangest stats of the 2016 NBA play-offs
Trouble in Toronto, rain in Cleveland, Stephen Curry’s overtime encore, Tim Duncan’s decline and Dwyane Wade’s awakening
As we quickly progress through the second round of the 2016 NBA play-offs with the conference finals fast approaching, we take a look at the five strangest statistics from the postseason thus far.
The Toronto Raptors All-Star backcourt of Kyle Lowry and DeMar DeRozan have been the farthest thing from themselves throughout the team’s first 11 play-off games, and their struggles don’t seem to be getting any better.
Regular season statistics combined – Points: 44.7, assists: 10.4, rebounds: 9.2, field goal percentage: 43.7 per cent, three-point percentage: 36.3 per cent, free throw percentage: 83.1 per cent.
Postseason statistics combined – Points: 32.7, assists: 9.4, rebounds: 8.6, field goal percentage: 33.1 per cent, three-point percentage: 17.8 per cent, free throw percentage: 74 per cent.
IT’S RAINING IN CLEVELAND
The Cleveland Cavaliers concluded the regular season tied for second in the league in three-pointers made per game (10.7) and eighth in three-point percentage (36.2 per cent). Those numbers have skyrocketed this postseason, as they lead all teams in both three-pointers made (16.8) and percentage (46.2 per cent) throughout their first eight play-off games. Did we mention that they sank an NBA-record 25 threes in game two of the Eastern Conference semi-finals series with the Atlanta Hawks?
The fact that it was the back-to-back MVP who did it takes away from the strangeness factor, but nonetheless, Stephen Curry’s record-breaking 17-point overtime performance in game four of the Western Conference semi-finals with the Portland Trail Blazers in his first game back from a four-game absence was nothing short of spectacular.
TIM DUNCAN’S DECLINE
Could it be that Father Time is finally catching up to the timeless Tim Duncan? In game four of the Western Conference semi-finals against the Oklahoma City Thunder, the recently turned 40-year-old was held scoreless for the first time in his 249-game play-off career. In eight games so far, he has scored just 35 points, numbers that his fron-tcourt counterpart LaMarcus Aldridge has eclipsed in a single game ... twice.
DWYANE WADE’S AWAKENING
The 34-year-old guard has carried the Heat through the postseason, leading all qualified players (still in the play-offs) in percentage of field goals made that are unassisted with (80.8 per cent), up from his regular season numbers of 71.7 per cent. He’s also averaging the most points (22.0) and rebounds (5.6) since the end of the LeBron James era in Miami and is shooting the highest percentage from beyond the arc of his postseason career with 61.5 per cent, well above his previous postseason career-high of 40.5 per cent.