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Damian Lillard the Definition of ‘Outlier’

The Trail Blazers star far and away leads his team in ‘total points added’

New Orleans Pelicans v Portland Trail Blazers Photo by Abbie Parr/Getty Images

We all know that Damian Lillard is good. I mean, REALLY good.

It can be hard to fully quantify Lillard’s full impact on the Trail Blazers, but NBA Math attempts to do so on Twitter, and the results are shocking; even to those of us who know.

Talk about an outlier.

TPA (total points added) is defined as:

The formula for TPA is rather simple. It’s broken down into two parts—offensive points added (OPA) and defensive points saved (DPS)—and each is calculated in the same vein.

OPA is derived by adjusting offensive box plus/minus (OBPM) to account for the number of possessions the player in question is present for. Similarly, DPS is derived from a similar adjustment of defensive box plus/minus (DBPM) with that same number of possessions. OBPM and DBPM, both calculated by, estimate the per-100-possessions value of a player on either end of the court.

Add OPA and DPS together, and you have TPA. A score of zero indicates a player was perfectly average (by no means a bad thing for rookies or lifelong end-of-bench players), while anything positive means they were better than an average-level replacement.