The Intersection of Points and Shooting Efficiency


Net Points is a great way to measure a players scoring production.  To calculate net points simply subtract true shot attempts from points scored.

Andres Alvares has done great work compiling NBA career & seasonal leaders in Net Points.

Building off Dre's work, here are the Top 5 Careers in NBA History ranked by 'Net Points'





TOTAL

NET NBA DEBUT POINTS
PLAYER POINTS SEASON RANK




Kareem Abdul-Jabbar 5986 1970 1
Karl Malone 4915 1986 2
Reggie Miller 4689 1988 19
Adrian Dantley 4382 1977 27
Charles Barkley 4349 1985 24


Compare Net Points rankings to each player's all-time ranking in Total Points shown in the far right column.  High volume scorers who were also efficient shooters move way up the list.  Adrian Dantley jumps all the way from 27th in career points to 4th in Net Points.

On the other hand subtracting True Shot Attempts from points hurts players like Wilt Chamberlain.  He falls from 5th in total points down to 24th in Net Points.  This is where the limitation of the metric becomes clear.

Net Points works well across time periods if league average shooting percentages remain constant.  Since points/shot attempt has varied over time players scoring and shooting numbers need to be adjusted to league average in the season they played.  NBA Metrics focuses on Points Above Average to judge a players value as a scorer.

After adjusting for his peers performance Wilt is placed back in the top five scorers in NBA history.





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