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The 2020 NBA Draft is right around the corner, so Greg and Wayne Winston came up with a way to predict the prospects' production through winshares.

2020 NBA Draft – Projecting Prospects’ Production Through Winshares

What 2020 NBA Draft prospects will put up numbers in the pros?

We wanted to see if we could predict which former NCAA players will stuff the stat sheet at the next level. So, we looked back at the last five top 10 draft picks and their points, rebounds and assists per game from their collegiate career, as well as shooting percentage and three-point percentage from their amateur days. With this information, we tried to anticipate the amount of winshares a player from would generate in their rookie NBA year using a regression.

First, let’s explain winshares. A winshare is basically an estimate of wins produced based solely on box score stats. We found some counterintuitive info. Basically, we found that centers’ winshares are more based on points per game, while rebounds better correlated to winshares for guards. We wouldn’t expect this, but it makes sense – all centers get boards, but not all guards do.

These stats indicate the important of versatility. Assists showed some importance for guards, but perhaps not as much as you’d think. We found a shockingly low correlation between shooting percentage and three-point percentage.

For reference, here is the data we collected for the past five years, using career college stats to produce winshares. Notice Zion Williamson and Ben Simmons leading the way (we factored in the shorter 2020 season due to coronavirus).

PLAYERPPGRPGAPGFG%3pt%Win Shares
Z. Williamson22.68.92.168%33.80%7
D. Hunter12.44.41.650.90%41.90%0.2
J. Hayes1050.372.80%0.00%5
R. Hachimura12.14.40.857.90%31.60%3
D. Ayton20.111.61.661.20%34.30%5.9
M.Bagely2111.11.561.40%39.70%3.6
J. Jackson10.95.81.151.30%39.60%3.3
M.Bamba12.910.50.554.10%27.50%1.7
W. Carter13.59.1256.10%41.30%1.9
Z. Collins105.90.465.20%47.60%0.6
M. Chriss13.75.40.853%35%1.8
J. Potl13.381.365.80%0%1.6
J. Okafor17.38.51.366.40%0%1.2
W. Cauley-Stein86.20.959.30%0%1.4
F.Kaminsky18.88.22.754.70%41.60%3.1
 PPGRPGAPGFG%3pt%Shares
J. Morant18.76.18.248.50%34.30%5.5
R. Barrett22.67.64.30.45430.80%-0.8
D. Garland16.23.82.653.70%47.80%-1.8
J. Culver14.95.62.845.90%34.10%-0.1
C. White16.13.54.142.30%35.30%1
T. Young27.43.98.742.20%36.00%3.2
C. Sexton19.23.83.644.70%33.60%-0.6
M. Fultz23.25.75.947.60%41.30%3.3
L. Ball14.667.655.15%41.20%2
J. Jackson16.37.4351.30%37.80%-0.6
D. Smith18.14.66.245.50%35.90%-0.7
B. Simmons19.211.84.856.00%33.30%9.2
K. Dunn12.85.15.845.00%35.40%0.1
B. Hield17.451.944.80%39%1.3
J. Murray205.22.245.40%40.80%1.3
D. Russell19.35.7544.90%41.10%0
 PPGRPGAPGFG%3pt%Shares
B. Ingram16.35.13.245.90%36%-0.3
C. Reddish13.53.71.935.60%33.30%-0.6
K. Knox15.65.41.444.50%34.10%-1.4
M. Bridges177.62.447.00%37.50%2.9
J.Tatum16.87.32.145.20%34.30%1.6
D. Fox16.744.647.90%24.60%0.2
J. Brown14.65.4243.10%29.40%1.5
S. Johnson13.86.51.744.60%37.10%0.6
J. Winslow12.66.52.148.60%41.80%2.5

Now applying that same methodology to members of the 2020 NBA Draft class, we projected what their winshares will be in the league.

PLAYERPositionPPGRPGAPGFG%3pt%SCOREWin Share
T. HaliburtonG10.14.44.750.90%42.60%13.50.669
A. EdwardsG19.15.22.840.20%29.40%13.20.312
A. NesmithF14.75.31.344.20%41%11.9-0.427
T. MaxeyG144.33.242.70%29.20%11.8-0.242
S. BeyF11.94.91.846.90%41.80%11.6-0.496
K. Lewis Jr.G15.93.6444.70%36.20%11.2-0.404
I. OkoroF12.94.4251.40%28.60%10.8-0.816
P.WilliamsF9.24145.90%32.00%9-1.71
D. VassellF8.43.21.147.50%41.70%7.5-2.343
PlayerPositionPPGRPGAPGFG%3pt%SCOREWin Share
J. WisemanC19.710.70.376.90%0%19.74.08
O. ToppinC17.16.6264.70%41.70%17.13.42
O. OkongwuC16.28.61.161,6%25.00%16.23.19
Z. NnajiC16.18.60.857.00%29.40%16.13.17
P.AchiuwaC15.810.8149.30%32.50%15.83.09
J. SmithC13.58.60.851.60%32.30%13.52.51

In regards to this draft, note that we aren’t projecting a lot of winshares from American players. The 2020 NBA Draft is European dominated, so no shock there.

Surprise, surprise, the top player is James Wisemen, the standout prototypical 7-foot-1 center from Memphis. As expected, he was also the leading scorer of all these prospects in college.

Wayne Winston and Greg Winston contributed to this report.

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