Friends of ISH!
As you all know, InsideHoops is the mecca for intelligent basketball discussion. I enjoy this venue because the posters here use advanced statistical models to look "beyond the boxscore". Indeed, there is so much knowledge in literally every thread posted here.
If I may, I would like to make a humble contribution, something I've been working on for many years now in my spare time. It is a very complicated mathematical formula that I believe encapsulates the most important quantities in basketball. I don't want to go into a huge explanation of how I arrived at this, but you can rest assured that the math is solid. The formula is:
SHOTS = FGA + FTA
or, since it is often more useful to see this PER game,
PER = (FGA + FTA) / #GAMES
As you all know, the objective of the game is to put up shots, so I am surprised that my revolutionary formula is not in the common nomenclature. Let us make it so!
This formula passes the "common sense" test as the greatest player in NBA history, Kobe Bean Bryant, routinely leads the league in this category. With Kobe out this year due to injury, we have Kevin Durant leading. From what I understand, he is the leading candidate for the MVP award (I don't know since I stopped watching the game the moment Kobe stopped playing), so again it looks solid.
Let us look at last year's PER for the top MVP candidates:
Look at "old" Kobe schooling these youngsters in their prime.
And look at their career highs:
Not even close!
I hope this helps illustrate Kobe's superiority to his so-called "competition"; this is especially important for you youngsters who started watching basketball this year and haven't had the fortune of watching the NBA PER leader. But no worries, he'll be back and better than ever next year!
Up next: I will add salary to the equation to show why Kobe is even more productive than these guys. SHOTS + $$ is pretty much what it's all about.
[EDIT!] Due to popular demand, I have submitted to Adam Silver a proposal to make PER a part of the official NBA awards, to hopefully replace the meaningless MVP. I have even designed a trophy and an infographic to show how this might look: