It's May 3rd, 2019. It's been over a year since I made up my mind that I'd like to graduate college as a Data Scientist. I love basketball, graphic design, data, and statistics. Chasing an impossible riddle in basketball and accurately being able to predict the game has always fascinated me. Not until a month ago did I choose to dedicate myself to chasing data science in scouting professional basketball.
I grew up attached to basketball. I remember getting to stay up to watch the Jazz play in the 2007 Western Conference Finals past my bedtime when I was eight years old. I started playing at age four, and the attachment grew from there. In 2010, I started to intently watch Jazz basketball games & got attached to watching Gordon Hayward and Derrick Favors grow up as basketball players as I grew up as a basketball fan. I was thrilled out of my mind when Gordon Hayward hit a game-winning shot against Lebron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers in late 2015, and attended my first playoff game in the 2017 first round series where the Jazz played the Clippers. I grew up statistically as well, going basing arguments off of simple metrics to trying to create metrics similar to ESPN's RPM or Goldstein's PIPM. More recently, I've evolved my basketball viewing to combine my skills into one. I'll make graphs, watch (rewatch, and rewatch some more) individual players to try to understand just where points are being created. Ben Taylor has been a huge guiding point to this end, reading through his Backpicks GOAT list, and reading his book "Thinking Basketball".
All of this has built up consistently to a tipping point that I find myself at today. I want to be involved in an NBA front office. I have to be, as I'm not so sure I can be happy with my career if I don't pursue this dream. I will, too. I'm dedicated to proving myself as a talent - as if I were going into the draft - that an NBA front office can't deny. I'm still piecing together my puzzle, and trying to figure out new, innovative ways to understand basketball. Until then, however, I'll be here. I'll be breaking down plays, combining tracking stats, creating new visualizations, and proving my worth. And I'm more than happy to have you come join me through the beginning of this adventure.