Visualizing NBA Top All-Time Players with Tableau

Bermuda_Bound 6:25 pm Mon Sep 9 EDT 1 ups @ 1.00 Deleted

[https://public.tableau.com/views/NBAAll-TimeTop5Players/NBATopAll-TimePlayers?:embed=y&:display\_count=yes&:origin=viz\_share\_link](https://public.tableau.com/views/NBAAll-TimeTop5Players/NBATopAll-TimePlayers?:embed=y&:display_count=yes&:origin=viz_share_link) Who are the top NBA players of all time? As a Reddit user and basketball fanatic, I want to understand how to make better fantasy teams and brackets using data. Utilizing Tableau Public, I created a viz to see a historical NBA player dataset in a new way. Dimensions like name and height and advanced statistical measures such as career win-share percentage (WS%) and player efficiency rating (PER) were the key inputs to help visualize this classic question. Before looking at the findings, here are some definitions: **WS%** - Career Win-Share Percentage (**WS%**): a metric that estimates the number of wins a player produces for a team. Usually calculated with full-season statistics, the WS% statistic can be a combination of offensive + defensive win-shares or calculated on its own. **PER** - This metric is a per-minute rating of player performance that accounts for positive and negative accomplishments like a made shot or a turnover. It has been the mainstay of fantasy basketball leagues ever since. **WHISPER** - I aggregated career win-share percentage (WS%) and player efficiency rating (PER) to create a new **WHISPER** advanced statistic that I believe is a better measure of performance. **WS% + PER = WHISPER** ... **The Results** Using a bubble chart, each player represents an individual bubble. The higher a players WHISPER, the bigger the bubble on the chart. All the top five player bubbles display in gold. The middle 19 player bubbles show silver. Bronze is the final mark of the remaining 76 players. I then filtered the results by a WS% < 92.5. Top 1-5: 1. Kareem Abdul-Jabbar **(298)** 2. Wilt Chamberlain **(273.4)** 3. Karl Malone **(258.5)** 4. LeBron James **(254.2)** 5. Michael Jordan **(241.9)** Top 6-10: 6. Tim Duncan **(230.6)** 7. John Stockton **(229.5)** 8. Dirk Nowitzki **(228.7)** 9. Kevin Garnett **(214.1)** 10. Oscar Robertson **(212.4)** **Findings** At #1, the NBAs all-time leading scorer, Kareem Abdul Jabbar. While Abdul-Jabbars PER is lower than those of Michael Jordan, LeBron James, and Wilt Chamberlain, his WS% helps catapult (sorry r/trebuchet) him to the top spot. However, he did play the most games of anyone in the Top 5 --84 more than Karl Malone with the second-most games played. Speaking of Karl Malone, some might be surprised to see him land in the #3 position. But the Mailman was as consistent as his nickname over his 19-year NBA career, in which he played less than 80 games in only two seasons. Sports fans should also keep in mind how much contact was allowed at the post during Malones era. The physical style of play he had to overcome to score makes his achievements all the more impressive for a big man. Wilt Chamberlain also deserves a better reputation. The "Best of All-Time" debate often focuses on Jordan vs. LeBron, but Wilt the Stilt posted a higher career WSPER than both legends in fewer games. Perhaps we will hear his name come up more in the GOAT discussion. ... Who is on your NBA Top All-Time Players list? Could the WHISPER statistic be used to create a better fantasy basketball team or NCAA bracket? Do you agree with any of these data derived conclusions? Leave your comments below.