Good news for pro hoops fans who like to dig beneath the surface of the sport: The "Prospectus" family — creators of the totally awesome Baseball Prospectus — are beefing up their NBA coverage with a full-fledged NBA preview this season.
Pro Basketball Prospectus will be available as both a downloadable PDF and a print-to-order book, writers Kevin Pelton (a friend of Beyond the Arc) and Bradford Doolittle announced online yesterday, with ordering info to come.
The NBA has been missing something like this since John Hollinger quit publishing his annual book (originally titled Pro Basketball Prospectus, later changed to Pro Basketball Forecast) soon after joining ESPN.com. Hollinger still publishes all of the content, but it's more difficult to absorb dispersed across the site. Perhaps ESPN will be inspired to follow the new Pro Basketball Prospecus' lead and make Hollinger's work available in some kind of book form again.
I will be making a very small contribution to Pro Basketball Prospectus, but that's not why I'm promoting it here. Ever since Hollinger's book went away, I've been aching for a smart hoops annual that I can hold in my hands and that is more thorough and thought-provoking than the glossy preview magazines you can buy at the grocery store (one of which I also contribute to). And I suspect many of the readers here might also be interested in this.
Among the promised contents:
* Essays on all 30 teams
* Five-year team trend tables
* Info-packed tables on every player you can expect to see in the upcoming season, including their advanced stats for the last three seasons, their skill ratings and their contract status
* Commentary on every player
* Team and player contract information and salary-cap analysis
* The results of Kevin Pelton's dynamic SCHOENE projection system, both for players and teams
* Q&As with key basketball operations personnel
* Insight from blog authors on their teams
* A special section for fantasy leaguers, including an essay from veteran fantasy NBA writer Brian Doolittle as well as our unique player-rating system which utilizes SCHOENE's projections
* Special essays on topics as disparate as "The Economy and the NBA's salary cap", "How the Game is Played" and more
* The preseason version of the Prospectus Hoops List