Speed Reads


Kobe Bryant is the least valuable player in the NBA, per this one metric

Kobe Bryant is not a bad basketball player. Far from it. But so far this season, he ranks 436th in the league — dead last — in player plus-minus, which measures the point differential for a player's team when he is on the court versus when he is off it. In other words, it measures if a team performs better when a given player is playing.

Now, the caveat: Team play affects plus-minus, so the metric is unkind to players on garbage teams. This year, the Lakers are indeed a garbage team. And Kobe is roughly a top 50 player according to the more nuanced player efficiency rating (PER.)

Still, that Kobe ranks last in the league per plus-minus suggests he's hurting his team, something that Kobe's efficiency stats and his insistence on jacking up contested jumpers bear out as well.