Kyrie won't replicate IT's season. Three players in the history of the NBA have averaged 28+ points, 5+ assists, .620+ TS% and .540+ eFG%. IT, Curry, Durant. That's it.
So, we're in all probability looking at a step backward there.
Whether we're an overall better playoff team will depend a lot on whether Jaylen and Smart have progressed.
Roy - how do ITs stats for last year's team matter for a team that has completely turned over it's roster?
The stats are reflective of IT's level of play. IT had one of the all-time great offensive seasons in NBA history. It sounds like hyperbole, until you look at the numbers. Volume scoring with that efficiency is almost unheard of.
When considering whether there will be a step back, you have to consider how great IT was.
Yeah he was great, on a team without Gordon Hayward who will obviously command a major share of offense now.
We have to accept that IT's top-5 MVP performance last year was both great but also completely necessary and a function of the roster. This roster is different and that type of player is no longer needed.
The roster has more top end talent. That doesn't mean that IT's loss won't be felt, or that a player playing at a similar level is not "needed". The efficiency in particular is tough to replace.
We do have a player who will be playing at a similar level - Kyrie Irving.
Here are Isaiah's offensive numbers from last year:
Here are Kyrie's numbers:
I think it's safe to say that those production levels are 'similar'.
We aren't talking about a drop from 29 PPG to 18 PPG here...we are talking abut a 4 PPG drop in scoring output (partially offset by Kyrie's lower usage rate) and a 4% drop in TS%. Aside from this the two players had practically identical stats across the board.
So you are basically:
* Replacing about 90% of Isaiah's production from last year with Kyrie
* Replacing about 60% of Avery's production with whoever we start at SG (the biggest loss)
* Replacing about 180% of Crowder's production from last year with Hayward
* Replacing about 200% of Amir's production from last year with Morris
* Retaining 100% of Horford's production from last year by keeping Horford
I think our starting lineup is very easily at a plus there - it's the bench that I, personally, am worried about here.
My concern with the bench is simply how unproven the majority of our bench players are, assuming Smart stats (which all signs seem to suggest).
We pretty much know what to expect from Baynes, but aside from that it's an open book. We really have no clue what we are going to get from Rozier, Brown, Tatum, Theis, Yabusele, Nader, Larkin, etc. Absolutely no clue.
That list of guys is so unpredictable that it could just as easily be the a top 5 bench or a bottom 5 bench depending on which way any number of those dominos fall.