We're back! We discuss the NBA Finals ... tangentially. We discuss two of our favorite topics - how modern NBA players are better than past ones, and how positions still matter in basketball. Tune in!
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We discuss The Flynn Effect, which notes that on standardized tests that are normalized to average, people seem to be improving. For instance, every decade the average gains roughly three points on the IQ test. We relate this to the NBA, tune in!
This was inspired by two things. First, Jack O'Brien (@jack_obrien), founder of Cracked.com and former host of the Cracked Podcast, has left Cracked.com after over a decade there. On his first and last episodes of the podcast, he discusses the Flynn Effect. If you're a Jack O'Brien fan, you can check out jackcobrien.com (there's a c in that URL that's hard to catch!) to see what he'll be doing next.
Also, Magic Johnson hypothesized recently that the Show Time Lakers would sweep the current Warriors. I had one retort for that:
Funny part about Magic saying "Showtime Lakers would sweep Warriors."— Andrés Alvarez (@NerdNumbers) June 6, 2017
Showtime Laker Finals Sweeps: 0
Showtime Lakers Swept in Finals: 2
Additionally, I find it laughable the notion that a team in the 80s would stand any shot at competing with the best team from three decades in the future. It's the same as thinking a team from the 60s could compete with the Showtime Lakers!
We compare the Flynn Effect to another popular theory: Moore's Law, which relates to how the speed of computing has risen dramatically. For example, my iPhone, which is actually quite old, is significantly faster as a computer than an expensive computer I built myself in high school.
I definitely want to look at how the average NBA player has changed. I attempt to improv an example in the show, which fails, mostly. Fun note though, the average wing in 1986 shot under 30% from three!
Kevin Durant is helping the Warriors play 'small ball'? No! We discuss the notion of positionless basketball and rehash Ari Caroline's work on this.