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Statistics for setting screens?

By Scott Tibbs, March 6, 2013

Should very well-paid NBA players be rewarded in the stats for doing basic fundamental things during the game, or should they be expected to do those things as part of their job, whether it is tracked or not?

Bloggers for the Point Forward and HoopSpeak have put forward an interesting idea - tracking screens in the box score as a way to motivate players to do it more. This is not the most glamorous thing to do, but is often critical to the offense. Should players be officially recognized for it?

Here's the problem. If you're going to go down that road, there are many other basic things that could be tracked in the box score. Challenging a shot, staying in front of your man on defense, cutting off the passing lanes, boxing out for a rebound, diving for a loose ball, taking a charge, or tipping a rebound to a teammate could all be tracked in the box score to provide motivation to do those things... but should they be tracked?

Here is a better solution. Players making seven and eight figure salaries should be expected to do the little things simply because it is their job to do them. You should not expect to be officially recognized for doing the "little things" in a basketball game any more than you should be expected to be officially recognized for the "little things" in any other place of employment. Players should be expected to do the "little things" because they are paid to do it.