Discriminant analysis of game-related statistics between guards, forwards and centres in men basketball

Miguel Ángel Gómez-Ruano

Alberto Lorenzo Calvo

*Corresponding author: Miguel Ángel Gómez Ruano magor_2@yahoo.es

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Cite this article

Gómez Ruano, M. A., & Lorenzo Calvo, A. (2007). Discriminant analysis of game-related statistics between guards, forwards and centres in men basketball. Apunts. Educación Física y Deportes, 87, 86-92.



The aim of the present study was to analyze the differences in game-related statistics between basketball guards, forwards and centres from the European basketball League (Euroleague). The sample was gathered from the Euroleague boxscores from the 2004-2005 season, selecting an amount of 60 players (24 guards, 24 forwards and 12 centres). Furthermore, all the players have played  a minimum of 20 minutes per game. The game-related statistics analyzed were: minutes played, points scored, free-throws (both successful and unsuccessful), 2 and 3 points field-goals (both successful and unsuccessful), offensive and defensive rebounds, blocks, assists, fouls (committed and received), turnovers and steals. Each player’s results in every game-related statistics were divided by player’s minutes on court, resulting in derived rate variables. Discriminant analysis was used when trying to identify the game-related statistics that better discriminate between player positions (p ≤ ,05), using as interpretation a structure coefficient greater than |0.30|. The results showed the differences between guards and centres with emphasis in  assists (CE=35), successful 3 points field-goals (CE=,46); and with a de-emphasis in unsuccessful 3 points field-goals (CE=.44), and the offensive rebounds (CE = –,46), defensive rebounds (CE = –,42), blocks (CE = –,36), successful 2 points field-goals (CE = –,35), successful free-throws (CE = –,45) and received fouls (CE = –,33). The results enhance the importance of guards in attack phases; and centres in defensive and offensive actions. Conversely, the forwards showed mean values in all the game-related statistics. With an overview of these results, these profiles help the coach in player recruitment and allow them to prepare practices according to the  player position.

Keywords: Basketball, Game Statistics, Player Position.

ISSN: 1577-4015

Published: January 1, 2007