If you missed it yesterday, Rob Mahoney wrote an excellent post
on Derrick Rose's much improved defense over at the New York Times'
Off the Dribble blog. Mahoney concludes that Rose's defensive progress is even more striking than all of those three-pointers, and is the real reason Rose should be squarely in the middle of the MVP debate.
I really enjoyed the statistical portion of the post, if only because you certainly won't ever find that stuff here.
More outstanding yet are Rose's individual defensive numbers. According to Synergy Sports Technology,
Rose has allowed just 0.77 points per possession overall on defense
this season, an elite mark for any defender, regardless of position.
Chris Paul (0.86 points per possession allowed), Rajon Rondo (0.83 PPP
allowed), and Russell Westbrook (0.92 PPP allowed) -- all excellent
defenders -- have been trumped statistically this year, and by no slim
margin. Rose has each of those players handily beat, and boasts a
shockingly comprehensive defensive profile.
Rose is particularly effective in defending isolation sequences,
where he allows just 0.61 points per possession. Rose's lateral
quickness becomes a huge asset when opponents go one-on-one.
If it's a stat, I'll believe it. So head over to Off the Dribble and read the whole thing
. There's YouTube videos and everything. Very convincing.