Comparing Lebron’s Career vs. 2011 Finals Performance

One of the key story lines in this year’s NBA finals has been the play of Miami Heat superstar Lebron James, whose sluggish performance has fans and reporters scratching their heads. 

This interactive bubble chart compares James’ per-game statistics by career, playoffs and this year’s finals. Clearly he’s underperforming by almost every common metric, scoring fewer points, getting to the free-throw line less often and making a lower percentage of his field-goal and three-point shots. 

Is the Dallas Mavericks defense that good, or is something else going on? Explore for yourself

Source: basketball-reference.com | Data | Made with Many Eyes

Shaq’s Career Stats

Shaquille O’Neal is ending his 19-year NBA career, according to his Twitter feed

Shaq ooout. #ShaqRetires http://www.tout.com/9944wo

This scatterplot shows how the 7-foot-1 star’s field goal performance has declined over time, as O’Neal moved from Orlando to LA and, ultimately, Boston. The Y-axis shows the number of field goals made, and the X-axis shows his age (view the interactive version):

Use the drop-down menus to change views. This one shows that Shaq’s field goal percentage improved with age, even as his output declined: