Charles “Consistency” Barkley

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Charles Barkley is probably best known for his gregarious personality, his willingness to joke about himself, and his hit-or-miss analysis on TNT.  But back when Charles was an all-world basketball player, he put up some of the most efficient scoring numbers, and he did it with superb consistency.

Using the Basketball Reference Player Game Finder allowed me to look up the upper and lower thresholds for Charles.  Between 1986/87 and 1999/2000 Charles played 911 games.

He shot below 40% for 168 of them. He shot over 60% for 329 of them.

In that time period, he had only 21 games over 40 points. He scored 20 or less in 329. 131 of those came in Houston where he averaged less than 20 ppg. That cuts the number of games below 20 when he was averaging +20ppg almost in half.

So out of 911 games, he shot unreasonably bad in 18% of them. Of the 728 games in which he averaged 20+ PPG, 198 of them were below 20 points. That’s 27%.

40% is pretty low though. So let’s go with the current cutoff of a decent FG%, which I think most people put at 45%. That number is 245. 27% of 911.

If we go with 48% the number is 299. 32% of 911.

Still, 70% of the time Chuck is giving you what you expect. I suppose we’d have to run his contemporaries through the process to see where he stood amongst them. In general though, I think we gotta say that puts in him in the good to excellent range for consistency – especially when you consider how amazing his overall offensive game was to begin with.

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One Response to “Charles “Consistency” Barkley”

  1. jpalumbo Says:

    Actually 48% is a pretty high mark. If Kobe ever shot 48% from the field for a whole season, the city of Los Angeles would rename Malibu after him. Just goes to show why Charles is so highly regarded by stat-heads.

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