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Statistical Query: Is Hansbrough Helping Himself?

Query: What percentage of Tyler Hansbrough's offensive rebounds are coming off of his own misses?

This same question came up in the off-season as we were projecting rebounding as a potential area of weakness for this year's Pacers' roster. Many fans were excited about Hansbrough's healthy 12.7 ORB% from his rookie season. Others were of the opinion that this number was inflated by the number of times Hansbrough was grabbing his own misses on layups and other close shots.

I looked at the numbers for Hansbrough last season and found that 19 of his 60 offensive rebounds, or 31.7%, came off his own misses. This season I found that 27 of his 101 offensive rebounds, or 26.7%, were off his own misses. This of course doesn't count team offensive rebounds or plays were Hansbrough tips the ball to a teammate who is credited for the rebound. This season he's posted an ORB% of 12.0. So he's grabbing roughly the same percentage of offensive rebounds but slightly fewer of them are coming off his own misses.

One reason this was a big issue last season was that Hansbrough shot an abyssmal 36.0% from the field. This season he has pulled his shooting percentage up to 43.0%. A higher percentage of his offensive rebounds came off of his own misses last season because he was responsible for so many more misses. It's important to note that ORB% looks at a player's rebounds as a percentage of the opportunities so the statistic already accounts for that. Any inflation would be more likely to show up in his per game or per minute rebounding numbers.

As far as I know there aren't public access statistical websites that track rebounds off a player's own misses. It's fairly time consuming to put the number together, having to go through play-by-play logs by hand, so I don't have numbers for other players to compare Hansbrough to. When this question came up the first time I took it to the APBRmetrics forum to see if I could find some more information. Without citation a commenter threw out the number 18% as the average percentage of offensive rebounds that come off one's own misses. If that's true than, as many expected, Hansbrough is grabbing way more of his own shots than most players.

Regardless of who missed the shot, an offensive rebound is an offensive rebound. Hansbrough's ORB% is 19th in the league for forwards, which is fairly impressive. His ORB% trails Kevin Love's by just 1.8 percentage points. Whether his numbers are inflated or not he's clearly a capable offensive rebounder. The only legitimate downside I could find is that he's scoring just 0.96 points per possession and shooting 42.9% off of offensive rebounds. If he could put a few more of those caroms through the basket he'd really be in business.

Thanks to Dustin for the question. If you have a Pacers' related stats question or angle you'd like me to look at send me an email at