Feb 14, 2013; Oklahoma City, OK, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder forward Kevin Durant (35) handles the ball against Miami Heat forward LeBron James (6) during the second half at the Chesapeake Energy Arena. Mandatory Credit: Mark D. Smith-USA TODAY Sports

The Five Lineups with the Biggest Statistical Impact on Games

The NBA has recently started publishing Player Impact Estimates (PIE).  According to the NBA Stats Glossary, “PIE measures a player’s overall statistical contribution against the total statistics in games they play in. PIE yields results which are comparable to other advanced statistics (e.g. PER) using a simple formula.”

PIE Formula

While PIE can be used for individual players, it can also be used to measure the lineups that have the largest statistical contribution in the games they play. In very simple terms, PIE measures the percentage of all the good things that happen in a game that a player/lineup/team is responsible for.

Let’s use the following image as an example.  Below, you see the individual PIE from Game 6 of last year’s Eastern Conference Finals — LeBron’s PIE was an incredible 33.3%.  Now what does that 33.3% represent?  It represents the percentage of all the game’s stats that LeBron was responsible for.

I am not saying that PIE is a best way of ranking players, lineups, or teams.  But it is another way of measuring the impact of certain players, lineups, and teams on a game.

 See here for a more detailed explanation of PIE.

The top five lineups by PIE given at least 300 minutes played are…

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