Kings of The System: Determining the NBA Team(s) That Would Be the Best Fit for the Grinnell System Using Investment-Based Quantitative and Qualitative Analysis
17 Pages Posted: 30 Jun 2019 Last revised: 16 Aug 2019
Date Written: July 27, 2019
The Grinnell System is a fast-paced basketball playstyle that emphasizes a massive amount of high-value shots, stifling full-court defense, and full lineup substitutions in order to both force opponents into a high-octane shootout and to provide a non-stop spectacle for anyone watching. The System has resulted in multiple NCAA records for most assists in a single game along with providing a game in which a Grinnell player scored an absurd 138 points in 36 minutes, a total unequaled at any professional or collegiate level in the United States. It is clear that The System has merit in its current application, but does it have promise at the NBA level? This paper sought out the answer to that question, combining quantitative and qualitative analysis akin to that used in the investment field. The quantitative portion consisted of using NBA 2018-19 season to build a factor model off of five key components of The System and transforming them via normalization and vectorization. This resulted in an all-encompassing "System Factor" in order to see which NBA teams fared best with The System. This quantitative factor analysis resulted in four NBA teams being the tope candidates. These teams were further winnowed down with a combination of topline quantitative statistics and qualitative perspectives, eliminating teams with too much downside, personnel uncertainty, and a lack of history with The System itself. In the end, the Sacramento Kings emerged as the NBA team with the right combination of quantitative metrics and qualitative support to run The System.
Keywords: Factor model, regression analysis, quantitative finance, financial engineering, basketball, sports statistics, statistical analysis, financial modeling, investment management, asset allocation, basketball analytics, NBA, Sacramento Kings, Atlanta Hawks, Grinnell College, Grinnell System, Harry Giles
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