PBA Metrics: The league’s most efficient scorers

Scoring efficiency is probably an underrated art in today’s league.

Normally, fans would look at how many points a player has scored and neglect the number of attempts taken to get those buckets. But isn’t it kind of an eyesore seeing someone score 30 on 25 field goal attempts and hurt the team’s offense in the process?

Today, we’re taking a look at the league’s most efficient scorers based on two single-number metrics – the effective field goal percentage (eFG%), which is a measurement of a player’s efficiency in all field goal attempts, with the idea that a three pointer is worth more than a two; and the true shooting percentage (TS%), which is a measurement of a player’s efficiency in field goal attempts, three-point attempts and free throws made.

This list is littered with both volume scorers and low-usage role players. Did your guy make the list?

* stats are accurate as of 13 February 2018

10. Raymond Almazan, Rain or Shine Elasto Painters
2017-2018 PBA Philippine Cup stats: 9.7 points, 6.8 rebounds, 1.7 blocks, 52.3% on field goals, 33.3 percent on threes, 75% on free throws
58.8 TS%, 55.7 eFG%

Almazan doesn’t take a lot of shots and doesn’t play huge minutes, but he’s steady on offense and doesn’t hurt them anywhere in that department when he’s on the floor. The former Letran big stretches the floor well and bangs it down low whenever needed for the Elasto Painters, who are currently riding a three-game winning streak.

9. Chris Tiu, Rain or Shine Elasto Painters
2017-2018 PBA Philippine Cup stats: 13.3 points, 3.4 rebounds, 4.4 assists, 1.0 steals, 43 percent on field goals, 47.1 percent on threes, 70 percent on free throws
59.5 TS% 55.4 eFG%

I’ve raved in my past columns about Chris Tiu’s efficiency and I’m doing it again now. He has the keys to coach Caloy Garcia’s offense and he’s just running it smoothly. Tiu has the league’s fourth-best offensive rating (121.1) and is surprisingly more effective than his teammate Almazan even while leading the team in scoring, handling the ball more often, taking more shots, and playing more minutes.

8. Gelo Alolino, Phoenix Fuel Masters
2017-2018 PBA Philippine Cup stats: 9.1 points, 2.0 rebounds, 1.8 assists, 0.9 steals, 50 percent on field goals, 43.8 percent on threes, 75 percent on free throws
58.4 TS% 56.8 eFG%

Alolino is only playing 18 minutes a game but he has the team’s highest Player Efficiency Rating (20.0) and is already the team’s most efficient scorer. It’s only a matter of time before he sees more action the court because of his huge contributions in small doses.

7. Mark Borboran, Rain or Shine Elasto Painters
2017-2018 PBA Philippine Cup stats: 6.6 points, 4.0 rebounds, 1.5 assists, 1.1 steals, 0.9 blocks, 51.2 percent on field goals, 35 percent on threes, 50 percent on free throws
59.5 TS% 59.8 eFG%

Another player from Rain or Shine makes the list, and it’s probably because of the minutes distribution that gives the team’s players a chance to contribute positively. Borboran has always been an energy guy and while he won’t always see big minutes (20.9 per game), but he’ll always be effective in doing his role. Mark is currently knocking down a decent percentage of his threes, where he attempts over two a game.

6. Cyrus Baguio, NLEX Road Warriors
2017-2018 PBA Philippine Cup stats: 5.8 points, 4.7 rebounds, 2.6 assists, 1.0 steal, 55.3 percent on field goals, 27.3 percent on threes, 77.8 percent on free throws
62.0 TS% 59.2 eFG%

‘Skyrus’ makes another efficiency list. He’s way past his prime and he’s merely a cog in NLEX’s top-three offense today, but he’s crazy efficient on offense whenever he’s playing. It’s an understatement to say that the veteran slots nicely as a role player.

5. Matt Ganuelas-Rosser, San Miguel Beermen
2017-2018 PBA Philippine Cup stats: 6.0 points, 4.8 rebounds, 1.1 steals, 0.9 assists, 61.1 percent on field goals, 44 percent on free throws
60.1 TS%, 61.1 eFG%

He doesn’t space the floor and he’s abysmal from the charity stripe, but Ganuelas-Rosser makes up for it by being terrific inside the arc, where he’s only second behind Junemar Fajardo on field goal percentage. Such play is important for the Beermen’s almost invisible bench since Matt is the only player seeing more than 20 minutes per game behind the starters.

4. Jason Ballesteros, Meralco Bolts
2017-2018 PBA Philippine Cup stats: 2.7 points, 5.1 rebounds, 1.1 blocks, 58.3 percent on field goals, 83.3 percent on free throws
64.9 TS%, 58.3 eFG%

His numbers might be more of a fluke due to the low minutes played (16.1 per game), but the big man out of San Sebastian is a fairly effective role player for Meralco this conference. He’s got a good touch from the line for a big man who lives exclusively in the paint, but it would be interesting to see how he handles bigger minutes.

3. Rome dela Rosa, Magnolia Hotshots
2017-2018 PBA Philippine Cup stats: 8.3 points, 2.7 rebounds, 1.1 assists, 0.7 steals, 52.3 percent from the field, 50 percent on threes, 78.6 percent on free throws
66.2 TS%, 60.2 eFG%

For a guy whose calling card is usually on defense, dela Rosa isn’t too shabby on offense. He lights it up from everywhere whenever he’s coming off the bench (132.8 offensive rating, first in the league), and it’s not like he’s playing garbage time minutes, too (23.1 per game). This might be the year where he takes a huge leap, assuming that he continues to see an uptick in playing time.

2. Paul Lee, Magnolia Hotshots
2017-2018 PBA Philippine Cup stats: 17.5 points, 3.3 rebounds, 3.0 assists, 1.0 steal, 50 percent on field goals, 47.4 on threes, 76.5 from the line
64.4 TS%, 62.2 eFG%

Lee is downright ridiculous on offense this conference. He’s unconscious for a volume-scoring guard (seventh in league scoring, first in team) while only playing 24.5 minutes a game (fifth in team). His scorching play is partly due to Chito Victolero’s offense and minutes distribution, where the ‘Angas ng Tondo’ has more guys to help take the pressure and attention off of him during games.

1. June Mar Fajardo, San Miguel Beermen
2017-2018 PBA Philippine Cup stats: 24 points, 13.1 rebounds, 2.2 assists, 2.1 blocks, 62.8 percent on field goals, 64.1 percent on free throws
65.2 TS% 62.8 eFG%

There’s virtually no one in the league who can guard a 6’9 behemoth in Fajardo. He’s second in the PBA in scoring and has the league’s best offense revolving around him. His dominance down in the paint means that the ‘Kraken’ doesn’t have to veer far away when he needs to get buckets, relying on post-ups, put-backs and easy dunks and layups for the bulk of his scoring. He’s unstoppable.

Guys who almost made the cut: Larry Fonacier (58.3 TS%, 55.6 eFG%), Rey Nambatac (58.0 TS%, 55.4 eFG%), Stanley Pringle (56.9 TS%, 55.4 eFG%), Carl Bryan Cruz (55.7 TS% and eFG%)