A Substitute for War

Basketball philosophy

Bogansing the Vote

with one comment

Keith Bogans

Image by Keith Allison via Flickr

ESPN did us the solid of sharing their expert picks, and lo &  behold the  picks by Dr. Jack Ramsey blew some minds. Manu Ginobili for MVP is the kind of off-the-wall pick that someone of Ramsey’s stature  might make people reconsider their opinions on. There’s nothing to be done though when he picks Keith Bogans as Defensive Player of the Year. Suffice to say, that there is no conceivable way that a guy who plays less than 20 MPG should be getting consideration for really any on court accolade. Even 6th Man of the Year is well out of his league, so DPOY is many orders of magnitude out there.

How do we reconcile that with the fact that Ramsey is a Hall of Fame coach who clearly knows the game on a level matched only by a few handfuls of people on this planet?

Well, by recognizing that Ramsey just isn’t putting that much effort into his picks.

That may seem bold of me to say, but I don’t think there’s any other plausible explanation. On the broadest of levels, there are two types of awards voters: 1) voters who agonize over their picks because it’s very difficult to achieve complete confidence much of the time, and 2) voters who don’t agonize because making sure the right man gets the award just isn’t something they care much about.

Guess which group mega-successful athletes and coaches fall in 90% percent of the time.

Ramsey’s not making these picks because he’s gone crazy, or he’s biased, or he’s looking to sabotaged things. He’s just rolling his eyes at the notion that he has to pick the exact right candidate for awards. He’s seeing guys doing good things that deserve props, and so in the 5 seconds of time he spends filling out ESPN’s voting, a couple of those guys pop into his head.

This, along with the potential for bias and politicking of votes are things that come to my mind whenever people trash the media‘s awards voting. The coaches know the game better than the press (and the players might as well, though that’s debatable) but you certainly can’t look at their track record in votings and think they should be thought to have perfect judgment.

The reality is that no matter who votes, there will be problems. The most productive thing we can do is look at the trends we see when we compare how the media votes on the same awards the players and coaches do in sport. In the meantime, let’s just all find some unity in knowing thath the silliest of claims in player comparisons can come from any sector of sporting brain.

Written by Matt Johnson

April 28, 2011 at 10:32 pm

One Response

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  1. Or chances are he looked for ‘Bogut’ and clicked ‘Bogans’ by mistake


    May 3, 2011 at 8:43 am

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