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Journal of Quantitative Analysis in Sports

An official journal of the American Statistical Association

Editor-in-Chief: Glickman, PhD, Mark

4 Issues per year


SCImago Journal Rank (SJR) 2015: 0.288
Source Normalized Impact per Paper (SNIP) 2015: 0.358
Impact per Publication (IPP) 2015: 0.250

Online
ISSN
1559-0410
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The Individual Factors of Successful Free Throw Shooting

Allan Z. Maymin
  • AllianceBernstein
/ Philip Z. Maymin
  • NYU-Polytechnic Institute
/ Eugene Shen
  • AllianceBernstein
Published Online: 2012-10-09 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/1559-0410.1414

Abstract

We use three-dimensional optical tracking data on the 25-frames-per-second positional data of 2,400 free throw shots by the twenty players with at least twelve tracked makes and twelve tracked misses over the course of the 2010-2011 NBA season, fit each trajectory to a comprehensive physics model to find the implied backspin, initial launch height, velocity, angle, and left-right deviation, and examine the differences of those five factors between makes and misses for each player with sufficient attempts in our sample. We find that usually one or two factors are most responsible for a given player’s misses, but the particular factors at fault differ across players. Thus, the causes of successes and failures in free throw shooting are idiosyncratic. This framework may also be useful in analyzing jump shots taken during the game.

This article offers supplementary material which is provided at the end of the article.

Keywords: free throws; physics; trajectories; shooting; success; NBA

About the article

Published Online: 2012-10-09


Citation Information: Journal of Quantitative Analysis in Sports, ISSN (Online) 1559-0410, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/1559-0410.1414. Export Citation

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