Sunday, April 6, 2008

Joel Przybilla: Post All-Star Rebounding Machine

If you've been following the Trail Blazers lately (which I can only assume you have) it should come as no surprise to you that Joel Przybilla has been a monster on the glass. he pulled down ten rebounds or more in ten games in March. He's also had 15 or more rebounds in four of the last seven games. Impressive, no?

So while I knew Przybilla's rebounding numbers were better than average since the All-Star break, I didn't realize that he's statistically the best rebounder in the NBA since mid-February.
Trail Blazers center Joel Przybilla, above, did not win the slam-dunk contest during the All-Star weekend. That honor went to the Magic’s young star Dwight Howard. But since then, Przybilla has been outperforming Howard in the category Howard does best in, rebounding.

Through Thursday, Przybilla led the league in rebounds per 48 minutes since the All-Star break with 18.5 to Howard’s 18.2.

Howard has a large advantage in minutes a game, so his overall average of 14 rebounds per game was higher than Przybilla’s 11.4.

Przybilla was especially dominant in the 10 games preceding Friday’s contests, averaging 12.8 rebounds a game and 19.8 per 48 minutes.

How did Howard do? Not bad: 14.3 and 19.0.

Staying out of foul trouble and being able to get a cheap dunk here and there have allowed Przybilla to stay on the floor long enough this season to make a difference on the offensive and defensive glass. He's playing like a guy who isn't going to cede his starting position at center next season. Having two quality centers is an enviable predicament in this league.

(Thanks to Mike Golub for the tip!)

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