FanPost

Oden's foul pattern

The appearance (or maybe even reputation) was that Greg fouled guards driving to the basket. Greg has been moving his feet a lot lately, and I was interested to look at whether he still fouls guards a lot. I looked at Oden's foul pattern over the last 12 games (excluding Philadelphia game when everyone seemed out of sync).

Over the 12 games Greg was
  in foul trouble:         CLE, @CHA, UTA; 17 fouls in 3 games
  foul prone:               @DET, @NOH; 8 fouls in 2 games
  not in foul trouble:  @CHI, @GSW, @NJN, @MIL, CHA, WAS, @LAC; 24 fouls in 7 games
[Foul prone meant that he was pulled out of the game for some period of time because he had picked up a few quick fouls, but managed to stay in the game at other times and was able to log reasonable minutes].

Fouls themselves:                
  Offensive:           5 (0.42 fpg) 
  Loose Ball:        4 (0.33)
  Non Shooting:   3 (0.25)  -- dont have data on who he fouled
  Center/PF:       19 (1.6)
  Small Fwd:        7 (0.6)
  Guard:                8 (0.5)

Oden fouled guards only 17% of the time, and only at an average of 0.5 fpg. It does not appear that guards getting by the perimeter is a direct contributor to Oden's foul trouble. Even in the 3 foul trouble games, guards only drew 2 fouls (0.67 fpg) on Oden marginally higher than average, but not sufficient to be of relevance.

Combine Guards and Small Forwards as slashers. Slashers drew 15 fouls over the 12 games, still less than fouls on big men. Gerald Wallace drew 4 fouls in one game and almost single handedly fouled Greg out of that game. Except for that one game against CHA, slashers have not been the prime cause for Greg's foul trouble even in foul trouble or even foul prone games.

It does appear that Oden has progressed past the initial issues, and now is mostly bothered by opponents big men, to the tune of 1.6 fouls per game. Unfortunately, he has only played a few good big men during this stretch (Okur/Millsap, Okafor, Biedrins?). But, this is probably part of his normal learning curve and all part of the growth in becoming the monster defensive stopper. Wonder, if Greg sees Joel as a mentor?

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