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Will Andre Drummond's offensive rebounding hold in 2015-16?

Andre Drummond has put up historical numbers on the offensive glass. But will it last?

Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports

Toward the end of the season, Sean Corp put together a nice piece on just how prolific Andre Drummond is on the offensive glass. Tuesday morning, amid reports of Tristan Thompson willing to leave the Cleveland Cavaliers if he does not receive a five-year deal, Basketball-Reference's Twitter account put his offensive rebounding into perspective.

Those are some nice numbers for Thompson and something the Cavaliers need to consider when negotiating his contract. However, Keith Langlois saw something else.

Basketball-Reference was made aware of that as well...

So, I decided to dig a little further. Though Drummond is eighth on that list, if you were to calculate Offensive Rebounds per Minute, Drummond would be atop the list at 0.164. The next closest person (on that list) would be Popeye Jones at 0.130. But you have to ask yourself, how much have the Pistons' shooting woes helped Drummond's offensive rebounding numbers?

Well, first and foremost, there are times when he helps his own numbers. In his second year, Drummond pulled down five offensive rebounds in 10 seconds, most off his own misses, against the Chicago Bulls. One year, two months and 13 days later, Drummond pulled down five offensive rebounds in four seconds...against the Chicago Bulls. So Langlois, there are your 10.

Due to not having lineup data for all players, I had to use overall shooting percentages for the team whether the player was on the court or not. However, as explained later, I hope to evenly weigh this out.

During Drummond's first three years, the Pistons have taken 20,800 shots (probably half of those by Josh Smith). That is 4,500 fewer shows than the next fewest (Howard's teams). Overall field goal percentage for Drummond's team was not the lowest. The Pistons shot 44.2-percent overall whereas the lowest was 43.1-percent for Brand's teams (Chicago Bulls and Los Angeles Clippers). The Pistons were actually fifth lowest on the list.

On the other hand, the Pistons were the worst shooting free throw team of the bunch at 69.0-percentage, barely beating out O'Neal's Magic at 69.2-percent. But again, the Pistons in that time shot 1,400 fewer free throws than any other team. Of course, Drummond did not help that percentage out by shooting 39.7-percent from the line.

Without reliable on/off court data for older players, I had to try and even out the numbers. To do so, I had to resort to my funny math. By funny math I mean that I am not a statistician, that I very likely could have missed something, and there are unsolvable variables. For instance, I can determine the percentage of time a player is on the floor, but cannot determine the offensive rate while they are on and off the floor (at least not quickly and with the resources I have available).

Taking into account the number of opportunities per game a player had for an offensive rebound, Drummond had the fourth fewest on the list at 38.1 per game (see explanation of math at end of article). Thompson had the fewest at 34.1 per game and O'Neal had the most at 47.2 per game. The amount of minutes per game the player played along with the average minutes per game for the team was a key factor in these numbers.

As great as those numbers are, they are likely, and hopefully, going to drop some in 2015-16. With Stan Van Gundy filling the roster with better shooters, there should be fewer opportunities for Drummond to get offensive rebounds this year. That may or may not be offset by the absence of Greg Monroe. The addition of Ersan Ilyasova, who is not a bad offensive rebounder himself, Stanley Johnson and Marcus Morris, could tilt that scale some also. But as long as Drummond's decrease in offensive rebounding is scaled along with an increase in team wins, we should be okay with that.

Math Explanation

Since I know this community loves statistics and I did not have reliable data to go on, I feel a need to explain the math used. These numbers are not perfect, but I believe the error variance between the players is very small.

First, I had to find out the average number of minutes per game for each team. This was done by taking the team's total minutes and dividing it by games played. Very easy to calculate.

Next, I had to calculate the number of misses (from field goals and free throws) that were likely to be when that player was on the floor. There is no concrete way to figure this out for some of the players, so I used the same formula across all players on the list. To do this, I found out how much of the game a player played by dividing their minutes per game by the average minutes per game for the team. I then multiplied that by the total team misses not including that player's misses, then added on the players' misses.

Finally, I found out the per minute opportunities by dividing the total opportunities by the total minutes played by that player. I would then multiply that number by the minutes per game that player played, determining their opportunities per game.

Again, this formula may need tweaks. And honestly, there may be some site that has the data I'm looking for and be more accurate. But for the purpose of my article, this is the formula I used.

  • TMP - Team Minutes Played
  • TG - Team Games
  • MP - Minutes Played
  • G - Games played
  • TFGM - Team Field Goals Made
  • TFGA - Team Field Goals Attempted
  • TFTM - Team Free Throws Made
  • TFTA - Team Free Throws Attempted
  • FGM - Field Goals Made
  • FGA - Field Goals Attempted
  • FTM - Free Throws Made
  • FTA - Free Throws Attempted

(((((TFGA - TFGM + TFTA - TFTM) - ((FGA - FGM) + (FTA - FTM))) * (MP / G) / (TMP / TG / 5)) + (FGA - FGM) + (FTA - FTM)) / MP) * (MP / G)