Since the Blazers season is over, I thought I'd have a little fun with some Blazers draft history data. I downloaded all of the draft data back to 1970 (For those who don't know, that the starting year for the Blazers.). Some questions I wanted to answer: - How do the Blazers' draft selections stack up against other teams'? - Who was the Blazers best value draft pick? - Who was the Blazers worst value draft pick? - Who was the best Blazers GM? Keep in mind, drafting is different than putting a good team together. Often a very good player is drafted by the Blazers, only to be quickly cut or traded away. A prime example is Anthony Mason. Drafted by the Blazers in 1988 with the 58th pick. Cut by the Blazers soon afterwards. Becomes an all-star in 2001. Good drafting. Bad cut. It's difficult to measure the quality of a draft pick. There's always the balance of short term greatness versus long term productivity. Walton is a good example. Great for a few years, but didn't have longevity. After playing with the numbers for a while, I determined Win-Share to be the best metric for measuring the value of a draft pick. Every metric has it's drawbacks, but in the end, with so much data, Win-Share does a pretty good job at stack ranking the players. Here's a look at the average career Win-Share for each draft pick over the past 50 years: What this means is that a team selecting 11th historically selects a player that will generate 29.0 Win-Share throughout their career. A team selecting 20th historically selects a player that will generate 15.1 Win-Share throughout their career. Now armed with this data, I can compare if a team historically is drafting more talent than expected, or less talent than expected. I can also gauge if a player is 'living up to expectations' of their draft slot. Over the next few posts I'll use this data to answer the questions I stated above. And yes, I'll have some graphs. Lets have some fun with these numbers!