NBA.com columnist John Schuhmann is among the most vocal proponents of advanced statistical analysis in the NBA's mainstream, and in a column today, he stumps for Lakers forward Lamar Odom to win this year's Sixth Man of the Year Award. He makes his point with scads of data found using the NBA's proprietary StatsCube tool, for instance noting that Odom leads the league in "efficiency"--an all-in-one stat that adds weighted box score stats--among players eligible for Sixth Man this year. Plus, the Lakers consistently outplay their opponents in Odom's first five minutes on the court, a sign he makes an immediate positive impact for his team.â†µâ†µ
Schuhmann concludes that Odom "should be the clear choice for the Sixth Man Award this season" over the Dallas Mavericks' Jason Terry for a variety of reasons, especially for his defensive impact and contributions in areas other than scoring.â†µâ†µ
And Schuhmann isn't the only respected voice advocating Odom's candidacy here; last week, Zach Lowe of Sports Illustrated noted Odom's career-best shooting percentages and elite rebounding in selecting Odom as his Sixth Man.â†µâ†µ
Should the Lakers finish atop the Mavericks in the standings--they're tied for second in the West at the moment, with identical 48-20 records--it will be very difficult to argue Terry's case over Odom's.