Here is a quick table to think about before tonight’s game.
The story being told is that Kobe is doing everything he can to win a title but his teammates aren’t helping. The Wins Produced story is almost the same. Except the story would be “Pau Gasol and Kobe are doing everything they can to win a title, but their teammates aren’t helping.” And by the way, Gasol is doing slightly more than Kobe.
That last point is hard to see if you focus on points scored per game — or metrics dominated by points scored (i.e. the Player Efficiency Rating). Kobe has taken 120 field goal attempts for the Lakers. That mark doubles the number of shots Gasol has attempted from the field. Consequently, Kobe has scored many more point than Gasol. But is this the best allocation of shot attempts for the Lakers? Currently Gasol, Lamar Odom, and Andrew Bynum have all posted a higher True Shooting Percentage in the NBA Finals. Given this observation, maybe Kobe could think about passing the ball a bit more often tonight.
One last point about the above table: The calculations of Wins Produced employ ADJP48 and all the steps noted in Stumbling on Wins (and at Stumblingonwins.com). As one can see, the series has been very close. Of the 5 wins in the series, 2.54 have been produced by the Celtics and 2.41 by the Lakers.
Hope everyone enjoys the game tonight. If there is a need for a Game 7 I might update this analysis.
P.S. The data used for the above calculations came from NBA.com, a site that reports the statistics for each round of the playoffs.