List of Basketball Statistics
In basketball, statistics are used to keep track of player and team performance on a game by game and season by season basis. The scope of basketball stats span from easy to understand ones like "points per game," to advanced ones like "player efficiency rating." Because basketball is such a fast-paced sport, there are thousands of potential metrics that could be used to evaluate a player or team's performance in any given game. However, the statistics that are most commonly used to track and evaluate talent are listed below:
- Points per game (PPG)
- Rebounds per game (RPG)
- Assist per game (APG)
- Steals per game (SPG)
- Blocks per game (BPG)
- Turnovers per game (TO)
- Player Efficiency Rating (PER)
- Win Shares (WS)
- Field Goal Percentage (FG%)
- 3-point Percentage (3 PT%)
- Free Throw Percentage (FT%)
- Effective Field Goal Percentage (EFG%)
- True Shooting Percentage (TS%)
Points per game (PPG)
Points per game shows the average number of points a player has scored per game played across a specific time period (usually a season or career). The individual game scoring total is calculated by adding up all the 2 point field goals, 3 point field goals, and free throws the player makes in that game only. By taking into account a player's scoring output over a long stretch of time, PPG is a premier measure of offensive performance throughout all levels of basketball.
Rebounds per game (RPG)
Rebounds per game shows the average number of rebounds (both offensive and defensive) a player is credited with per game played throughout a specific game sample. A player is credited with a rebound whenever they are able to successfully grab the ball in bounds after a missed field goal attempt, meaning that most rebounds go to taller players that play the PF or C position. RPG is the most straightforward way that players, fans, and coaches can look at how aggressive and strong a player is when the ball is up for grabs.
Assists per game (APG)
Assists per game shows the average number of assists a player dishes per game played over a large period of time. A player is credited with an assist whenever they pass the ball to a teammate who makes a shot within a few dribbles of receiving the ball. This means that PGs and SGs are the most likely candidates to record a stat of this kind. APG is an effective measure of passing ability in the sport of basketball, especially as it pertains to creating easy/open shots for their teammates.
Steals per game (SPG)
Steals per game shows the average number of steals a player is credited with per game played over a large period of time. A player earns a steal if they are able to successfully take possession of the ball from the opposing team without fouling them. Steals can be earned by any type of player, but on average players that play on-ball defense (guards and small forwards) tend to gain more steals than big men. Overall, SPG is a common and effective way to gauge a player's perimeter defense.
Blocks per game (BPG)
Blocks per game shows the average number of blocks a player gets per game played over a large period of time. A player earns a block if they are able to successfully deflect an attempted shot on the defensive end of the floor. Generally speaking, centers and forwards earn more blocks because of their height and long-reaching ability. Because of this fact, most basketball minds consider BPG to be a practical measure of interior defensive ability.
Turnovers per game (TO)
Turnovers per game shows the average number of turnovers a player or team commits per game played over a prolonged period of time. In basketball, a player is credited with a turnover whenever they lose possession of the ball and give it up to the other team via a violation or stolen pass. Because of this, TPG is viewed as a fairly accurate way to measure how smart a player or team is playing on the offensive end.
Player Efficiency Rating (PER)
Player efficiency rating is an advanced basketball statistic that weighs a player's positive and negative contributions on both the offensive and defensive end against each other, attempting to gauge their approximate minute by minute productivity. The formula for PER is quite complicated, but it takes into account virtually all aspects of the game in its calculation.
Win Shares (WS)
Win shares is another advanced basketball statistic that quantifies a player's aggregate contribution to winning a game. The complex measures within the WS formula are similar to PER, with the exception being that WS is compiled at an aggregate level as opposed to a per minute level.
Field Goal Percentage (FG%)
Field Goal percentage is calculated by dividing a player or team's total number of made shots by their total shots taken. As opposed to the points per game statistic that only looks at aggregate totals, field goal percentage is used to evaluate a player/team's scoring efficiency relative to the amount of shots taken.
3-point Percentage (3 PT%)
3-point percentage is calculated by dividing a player or team's total number of 3 point shots made by their total number of 3 point shots taken. Because 3 point baskets are harder to make than 2 point baskets, most players have a higher FG% than 3 PT%.
Free Throw Percentage (FT%)
Free throw percentage is calculated by dividing a player or team's total number of made free throws by their total number of free throws taken. Generally speaking, point guards and shooting guards have higher free throw percentages than forwards and centers because they are better overall shooters.
Effective Field Goal Percentage (EFG%)
Effective field goal percentage is calculated by dividing a player or team's made 2 point field goals plus 1.5 times their made 3 point field goals by their total number of shots taken. By weighting 3 point field goals properly, EFG% provides a more accurate depiction of a player's scoring efficiency relative to the type of shots they take.
True Shooting Percentage (TS%)
True shooting percentage is calculated by dividing a player or team's total points by 2 times their field goal attempts +.44 times their there free throw attempts. By properly weighting free throw attempts, TS% gives players, fans, and coaches a more holistic look at the efficiency of high volume scorers who take advantage of the free throw line.