Estimating Positional Plus-Minus in the NBA

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Hua Gong, Su Chen


Plus-minus is a popular performance metric in sports. Our study follows the plus-minus framework and adopts a hierarchical Bayesian linear model to estimate plus-minus at the position level in the NBA from 2015-16 to 2021-22. This paper also uses redefined seven offensive and three defensive positions in the analysis, since traditional basketball player positions may not truly reflect player roles on the court. Overall, our analysis offers valuable information regarding average positional values in the NBA as well as the overall trend of player efficiency at various offensive and defensive positions.