Thanks for your post. That is very interesting. PPP is an interesting statistic, and I don’t have access to Synergy, but I don’t think pulling PPP (Points per Possession) for a team and assigning each player a portion of it is the best method of analyzing defenders. PPP is a very good team statistic, for sure, but I would question its importance on an individual player level. On an individual level, it will skew players who have to guard an opposing team’s best players as being poor defenders because they will “allow more points” even though the opposite is probably true. It will also reward poor defenders who aren't trusted with difficult defensive assignments because their coach knows they can't stop anyone.
The statistics I shared were a complete Defensive Rating for each player. The Defensive Rating is calculated by an apparently complex formula using Steals, Blocks, Times Blown By, Deflections, and Withstanding Ability. I pulled data off the Fox Sports website and barttorvik.com (a little more detail than Kenpom). Both sites reached similar conclusions.
Defensive Rating (high is bad):
TJ Haws 105.4 / 106.6 (Fox)
Brandon Clarke, Gonzaga - 82.9 (for comparison's sake as one of the best defenders in the country)
Yoeli Childs - 99.1
Gavin Baxter - 101.0
Nick Emery 104.3
McKay Cannon 104.7
Connor Harding - 106.6
Luke Worthington - 106.8 (The Worst Defender of the 8 rated)
Ironically, Luke Worthington is rated as the worst defender, not the best, when you look at a Complete Defensive Rating as opposed to a PPP rating. Both sites rate TJ Haws as Below Average or Poor – and certainly not Good or even close to Very Good.
So, it is interesting to see some of the discrepancies and even polar opposite conclusions we have come to. I think using the whole body of work approach that I am using through a Defensive Rating is a superior method of analyzing individual defenders than the PPP approach you posted. Would you agree? If you have additional searching capabilities on Synergy, do you have a Defensive Rating metric you can look for to compare more than just PPP for our players? Maybe there is something on there that gives a more comprehensive Defensive Rating or analysis. I would definitely be interested to see Synergy’s ratings on that if you can. Until proven otherwise, we will still need to keep TJ in the Very Bad Defender classification.