Grizzlies Hire John Hollinger as VP (this is not a joke)

Grizzlies Hire John Hollinger as VP (this is not a joke)

Postby BDG on Fri Dec 14, 2012 1:42 am

LOL.

While their widespread adoption took some time, advanced stats are now an everyday part of following the NBA. It's difficult to read about the league without hearing about True Shooting Percentage, or Rebounding Rate, or even something a little wackier like Advanced Plus-Minus. Counting rings and determining a player's heart may still dominate the NBA conversation, but more scientific metrics are very much an integral part of the way we consume the sport.

So, in a way, this next bit of news isn't very surprising. As first reported by The Memphis Commercial Appeal, the Memphis Grizzlies have hired ESPN.com's John Hollinger, the creator of Player Efficiency Rating (PER) and the most famous stats-minded basketball writer in the world, as their new Vice President of Basketball Operations. From Marc Stein for ESPN.com:

John Hollinger, a fixture of ESPN.com's coverage of the NBA for the past seven seasons and one of the leaders in basketball's rising statistical analysis movement over the past decade, is leaving his role as a columnist to join the front office of the Memphis Grizzlies.

Best known for hatching the formula behind every player's Player Efficiency Ranking (PER) -- which attempts to quantify player performance through the use of an all-in-one rating -- Hollinger will begin work as a senior executive in the Grizzlies' basketball department next week.

"It's incredibly difficult to leave ESPN, but the chance to work for an NBA team and the Grizzlies' new ownership was an irresistible opportunity," Hollinger said Thursday.

Hollinger was recruited to the Grizzlies by new controlling owner Robert Pera and CEO/managing partner Jason Levien, who have made upgrading Memphis' analytics department one of their front-office priorities.

While Hollinger has been with ESPN since 2005, he has been an important basketball analyst for much longer. He understands the game at an analytical level better than most every writer working today, and in many ways it's surprising that it took this long for a team to give him an offer he couldn't refuse. The Grizzlies' front office has gained a great mind.

The rest of us have lost a guy worth reading every day. I haven't always been the biggest fan of Hollinger's particular approach, but even when he's been wrong he's been thoughtful and capable of challenging deeply held assumptions about the game. He's not the first statistically minded writer to be hired by an NBA team (or even full-time), but he's clearly the most high-profile hire by far. (It's also worth noting that MLB teams have regularly hired stats-minded writers since that sport's statistical revolution.)

The good news is that, because of his efforts, there's an army of statistically minded analysts ready to take his place at ESPN.com and elsewhere. Hollinger's next findings will belong to the Grizzlies, but his influence will be felt by the general public for a very long time.

http://sports.yahoo.com/blogs/nba-ball-dont-lie/memphis-grizzlies-hired-statistical-analyst-john-hollinger-espn-001100317--nba.html
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Re: Grizzlies Hire John Hollinger as VP (this is not a joke)

Postby Texas Lakers Fan on Fri Dec 14, 2012 1:52 am

:man10:
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Re: Grizzlies Hire John Hollinger as VP (this is not a joke)

Postby wcsoldier81 on Fri Dec 14, 2012 2:18 am

I can feel the Grizz are about to save the Lakers franchise ala 2008 Pau again very soon
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Re: Grizzlies Hire John Hollinger as VP (this is not a joke)

Postby abeer3 on Fri Dec 14, 2012 9:41 am

yes! i don't have to read endless lakers snark from this moron anymore. plus, he gets to bring his "expertise" to a competitor.
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Re: Grizzlies Hire John Hollinger as VP (this is not a joke)

Postby JoelMyersScrotalSack on Fri Dec 14, 2012 11:38 am

He's a smart dude, not sure what's so funny.
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Re: Grizzlies Hire John Hollinger as VP (this is not a joke)

Postby Balance&Options24 on Fri Dec 14, 2012 11:41 am

So the grizzlies will probably never trade with the lakers ever again.
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Re: Grizzlies Hire John Hollinger as VP (this is not a joke)

Postby XXIV on Fri Dec 14, 2012 12:02 pm

Wow that' an amazing opportunity. It's definitely weird seeing a columnist getting this position, but if MB can become a HC I guess anything's possible.
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Re: Grizzlies Hire John Hollinger as VP (this is not a joke)

Postby TIME on Fri Dec 14, 2012 12:13 pm

JoelMyersScrotalSack wrote:He's a smart dude, not sure what's so funny.


So was Einstein but I'm not sure he would make a good NBA VP.
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Re: Grizzlies Hire John Hollinger as VP (this is not a joke)

Postby puffyusaf#2 on Fri Dec 14, 2012 12:48 pm

So no more of his craptastic stat articles :bow: :bow: :bow: Ive always loved the Griz
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Re: Grizzlies Hire John Hollinger as VP (this is not a joke)

Postby JoelMyersScrotalSack on Fri Dec 14, 2012 12:53 pm

They hired him because a lot of teams are heading in a more analytical direction for front office moves and Hollinger is one of the most prominent stat oriented basketball analysts out there.

It seems people only like to talk about him when he makes an inaccurate prediction and ignore all the times he's right. He knows a lot more about the game than 99% of all the other mainstream clowns imo
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Re: Grizzlies Hire John Hollinger as VP (this is not a joke)

Postby thkthebest on Fri Dec 14, 2012 2:46 pm

Yea, I'm not sure what's so funny. That's pretty cool.
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Re: Grizzlies Hire John Hollinger as VP (this is not a joke)

Postby abeer3 on Fri Dec 14, 2012 2:56 pm

what's funny is that hollinger doesn't actually know very much about statistics. unless he's been actively hiding it in his writing. there are guys that teams employ that are bona fide stat guys, but hollinger, in my estimation, is not one. everything i've ever seen from him is elementary in terms of analytics. PER, for example, is nowhere near as sophisticated as advertised. not only that, he's shown a fundamental misunderstanding of some basic statistical principles in some of his work.

now, in truth, i don't think fancy analytics provide the advantages that people believe they do--it's more about the access to better data than what you do with said data.

but seeing a guy who at one time might have pegged carl landry for superstardom running a team could be high comedy.

but i think the really funny part is that he may get to sit across the table from people he's insulted from the safety of his media perch. awkward....
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Re: Grizzlies Hire John Hollinger as VP (this is not a joke)

Postby JoelMyersScrotalSack on Fri Dec 14, 2012 3:05 pm

He writes for ESPN, he's not going to be writing articles that require his readers to have even a rudimentary knowledge of statistical methods. No one would ever read his work if he did.

Pretty ridiculous to conclude he doesn't know a lot about statistics.
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Re: Grizzlies Hire John Hollinger as VP (this is not a joke)

Postby abeer3 on Fri Dec 14, 2012 3:44 pm

lol, ok. how about he misapplies statistical theory in his written arguments? i actually work with statistics a fair amount in my research, and i can assure you that some of my poorer students could pick out some of the flaws in his arguments. one of my favorites was his insistence that the dallas mavericks' ability to win close games was bound to trend back to the norm at any moment. it didn't happen until they had full roster turnover. why? because he failed to recognize that a consistent anomalous finding is a reason to refute a theory (winning close games is random).

put it this way: i'd go toe to toe with hollinger on any statistical issue and feel confident, and i'm not being hired by any nba front office.

if you want to buy his snake oil because it sounds fancy and numbersy, that's your business. dude's never shown himself to be too sharp, and the word of others in the relatively dense field of armchair sports analytics doesn't sway me. in the land of the blind, the one-eyed man is king.
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Re: Grizzlies Hire John Hollinger as VP (this is not a joke)

Postby JoelMyersScrotalSack on Fri Dec 14, 2012 4:12 pm

Lol. Statistics majors are dime a dozen, no one cares if you use stats in your research. Plenty of MIT stat nerds try to get hired by NBA team and get turned away. If you want a job with an NBA team as a statistical analyst you have to come up with something almost revolutionary that will change the way the team thinks and operates. I'm sure there are plenty of people out there more knowledgeable about statistics than Hollinger, but there's so much more to basketball than pushing out data and going to the GM and saying, "Here play this guy next game". If you have ever heard him speak at the Sloan Conference or even just read his articles it's clear he knows a lot more about the game than people give him credit for.
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Re: Grizzlies Hire John Hollinger as VP (this is not a joke)

Postby Finwë on Fri Dec 14, 2012 8:44 pm

Meh. Pretty irrelevant to me.
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Re: Grizzlies Hire John Hollinger as VP (this is not a joke)

Postby abeer3 on Sat Dec 15, 2012 8:33 am

JoelMyersScrotalSack wrote:Lol. Statistics majors are dime a dozen, no one cares if you use stats in your research. Plenty of MIT stat nerds try to get hired by NBA team and get turned away. If you want a job with an NBA team as a statistical analyst you have to come up with something almost revolutionary that will change the way the team thinks and operates. I'm sure there are plenty of people out there more knowledgeable about statistics than Hollinger, but there's so much more to basketball than pushing out data and going to the GM and saying, "Here play this guy next game". If you have ever heard him speak at the Sloan Conference or even just read his articles it's clear he knows a lot more about the game than people give him credit for.


if you're going to insult me, you should demonstrate why hollinger is special instead of making assumptions about what he knows simply based on the fact that he was hired by an nba team. he's never provided any evidence to the public that he's even a decent statistician. so, if you don't have to be a decent statistician to be hired by an nba team, then i suppose it's not really about that.

i think it's funny that this guy has such devout followers. so much that you'd ridicule my attempt at establishing credibility on the subject while blindly accepting his based on pretty weak evidence. of course, that's how he's made a career: snowing folks who don't have a lot of experience in his supposed area of expertise.
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Re: Grizzlies Hire John Hollinger as VP (this is not a joke)

Postby abeer3 on Sat Dec 15, 2012 9:53 am

lakerswiz wrote:
abeer3 wrote: he's never provided any evidence to the public that he's even a decent statistician.

You mean that formula he created that is practically what Fantasy Basketball Games in the late 90's / early 00's were using isn't that special after all?


man, you don't know what you're talking about. the grizzlies hired him.

so you're stupid, and he's smart.

plus, numberz.
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Re: Grizzlies Hire John Hollinger as VP (this is not a joke)

Postby V.V.V.V.V. on Sat Dec 15, 2012 7:46 pm

I think they gave him job, since it's less painful than having to read his stupid articles about PER.
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Re: Grizzlies Hire John Hollinger as VP (this is not a joke)

Postby LakerBoyz24 on Sun Dec 16, 2012 2:27 pm

abeer3 wrote:
JoelMyersScrotalSack wrote:Lol. Statistics majors are dime a dozen, no one cares if you use stats in your research. Plenty of MIT stat nerds try to get hired by NBA team and get turned away. If you want a job with an NBA team as a statistical analyst you have to come up with something almost revolutionary that will change the way the team thinks and operates. I'm sure there are plenty of people out there more knowledgeable about statistics than Hollinger, but there's so much more to basketball than pushing out data and going to the GM and saying, "Here play this guy next game". If you have ever heard him speak at the Sloan Conference or even just read his articles it's clear he knows a lot more about the game than people give him credit for.


if you're going to insult me, you should demonstrate why hollinger is special instead of making assumptions about what he knows simply based on the fact that he was hired by an nba team. he's never provided any evidence to the public that he's even a decent statistician. so, if you don't have to be a decent statistician to be hired by an nba team, then i suppose it's not really about that.

i think it's funny that this guy has such devout followers. so much that you'd ridicule my attempt at establishing credibility on the subject while blindly accepting his based on pretty weak evidence. of course, that's how he's made a career: snowing folks who don't have a lot of experience in his supposed area of expertise.


The average NBA fan doesn't watch most of the games and just recites whatever the media says. As long as the results and the media are parallel, they believe it. They are the definition of false "cause-and-correlation". So you shouldn't be surprised that's how a NBA fan thinks. I seen so many false statements being repeated so many times just because the media says it at one point. Then the herd of sheep goes on forums and just spreads it, and then it becomes a falsified "truth".

I base alot on what I see from watching the games, statistics are just helpful but alot of things aren't shown in the stats of the game or the player. Most of the time, if you understand and watch the games, you can tell when a kid is just repeating what ESPN/the media has been saying about the said player or team.
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Re: Grizzlies Hire John Hollinger as VP (this is not a joke)

Postby Thenextgreat on Thu Dec 20, 2012 2:58 pm

Maybe they will make a movie about Hollinger and his statistics in 10 years....
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Re: Grizzlies Hire John Hollinger as VP (this is not a joke)

Postby Weezy on Thu Dec 20, 2012 3:18 pm

This is good news to me if it means he's done writing for BSPN, or at all really. Not having to see his strange power rankings and boring statistical articles referenced here anymore is great. And, if he fails with the Grizzlies, we can laugh at him for not being the know-it-all he thinks he is. Also, he can now be open about how he truly dislikes the Lakers, doesn't have to try and hide it cleverly.
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Re: Grizzlies Hire John Hollinger as VP (this is not a joke)

Postby Nikez on Thu Dec 20, 2012 3:21 pm

What are the exact duties of a VP anyways?
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