20-10-50 guy
Zach ponders the grim certainty of yet another 20-10-50 season.

20-10-50 guy (twen'-te ten fif'-te gi) noun. A professional basketball player who has averaged at least 20 points and 10 rebounds or assists for a single season, and whose team lost at least 50 games.

Usage example: Not surprisingly, Zach Randolph is the classic 20-10-50 guy.

Word history: This term was coined back in the fall of 2004 during the aftermath of my very first fantasy basketball draft. My buddy Statbuster was giving me hell for drafting Stephon Marbury, who was coming off a season in which he averaged 20.2 PPG and 8.9 APG. The conversation went something like this:

Statbuster: Dude, why would you draft Starbury? The guy's a cancer. He's like a tumor growing on top of another tumor. He's such a cancer, the American Medical Association is considering renaming "chemotherapy" to "stephonotherapy."

Me: Dude, team chemistry doesn't affect fantasy stats. And Marbury has great numbers.

Statbuster: Yep. He's always good for 20 points, 10 assists and 50 losses.
We both broke up laughing, and thus the 20-10-50 guy was born. Statbuster immediately pointed out that the Chicago Bulls traded Elton Brand after two consecutive 20-10-50 seasons. Quipped Statbuster: "That's when the Bulls said, 'Let's trade our best player, because he must be the reason we're losing.'"

I finally unleashed AnacondaHL on this subject, because, after all, he specializes in digging up arcane stats like this. Here are his findings:

20-10-50 guys -- Assists:

Turns out this is pretty rare. In fact, it's happened once: in 1990-91, Michael Adams averaged 26.5-10.5 for the worst defensive team of all time. The only other guy who came close was Tim Hardaway, who in 1992-93 averaged 21.5-10.6 for a Golden State Warriors squad that went 34-48.

20-10-50 guys -- Rebounds:

Now we're cooking! This happened 35 times in league history. AnadondaHL created a nifty spreadsheet full of pretty numbers, but here's the breakdown:

1950s: One guy did it, Neil Johnston of the Philadelphia Warriors, who went 12-57 in 1952-53 despite Johnston's 22.3-13.9.

1960s: It happened 10 times: once each for Elgin Baylor (29.6-16.4 in 1959-60 for the 25-50 Minneapolis Lakers), Bob Pettit (31.1-18.7 in 1961-62 for the 29-51 St. Lous Hawks), Baily Howell (21.6-10.1 in 1963-64 for the 23-57 Detroit Pistons), Gus Johnson (20.7-11.7 in 1966-67 for the 20-61 Baltimore Bullets), John Block (20.2-11.0 in 1967-68 for the 15-67 San Diego Rockets); twice for Willie Naulls (23.4-13.4 in 1960-61 for the 21-58 New York Knicks and 25.0-11.6 in 1961-62 for the 29-51 Knicks); and an amazing three times for Walt "Bells" Bellamy (31.6-19.0 in 1961-62 for the 18-62 Chicago Packers; 27.9-16.4 in 1962-63 for the 25-55 Chicago Zephyrs; and 22.8-15.7 in 1965-66 for the 30-50 New York Knicks).

1970s: It happened 9 times: once each for Elvin Hayes (27.5-16.9 in 1969-70 for the 27-55 San Diego Rockets), Nate Thurmond (21.9-17.7 in 1969-70 for the 30-52 San Francisco Warriors), Bob Kauffman (20.4-10.7 in 1970-71 for the 22-60 Buffalo Braves), Spencer Haywood (29.2-12.9 in 1972-73 for the 26-56 Seattle Super Sonics), Bob McAdoo (25.8-12.9 in 1976-77 for the 30-52 Buffalo Braves...although he was traded that season to the 40-42 New York Knicks), Artis Gilmore (23.7-12.7 in 1978-79 for the 31-51 Chicago Bulls), and Truck Robinson (21.1-11.6 in 1978-79 for the 26-56 New Orleans Jazz...although he was traded that season for the 50-32 Phoenix Suns); and twice for Sidney Wicks (24.5-11.5 in 1971-72 for the 18-64 Portland Trail Blazers and 23.8-10.9 in 1972-73 for the 21-61 Blazers).

1980s: It happened only twice: once each for Terry Cummings (23.7-10.6 in 1982-83 for the 25-57 San Diego Clippers) and Otis Thorpe (20.8-10.2 in 1987-88 for the 28-54 San Antonio Spurs).

1990s: It happened three times: once each for Roy Tarpley (20.4-11.0 in 1990-91 for the 28-54 Dallas Mavericks), Pervis "Out of Service" Ellison (20.0-11.2 in 1991-92 for the 25-57 Washington Bullets), and Derrick Coleman (20.5-10.6 in 1994-95 for the 30-52 New Jersey Nets).

2000s: It has happened eight times so far: once each for Shareef Abdur-Rahim (20.3-10.1 in 1999-00 for the 22-60 Vancouver Grizzlies) and Kevin Garnett (22.4-12.8 in 2006-07 for the 32-50 Minnesota Timberwovles); and twice each for Elton Brand (20.1-10.0 in 1999-00 for the 17-65 Chicago Bulls and 20.1-10.1 in 2000-01 for the 15-67 Bulls), Zach Randolph (23.6-10.1 in 2006-07 for the 32-50 Portland Trail Blazers and 20.8-10.1 in 2008-09*), and Al Jefferson (21.0-11.1 in 2007-08 for the 22-60 Minnesota Timberwolves and 23.1-11.0 in 2008-09 for the 24-58 Timberwolves).

*In 2008-09, Z-Bo became the only player in NBA history to average 20-10 for two 50-loss teams: the 32-50 New York Knicks and the 19-63 Los Angeles Clippers. Even better, Randolph -- currently averaging 20.3 PPG and 10.7 RPG for the 1-6 Memphis Grizzlies -- stands an excellent chance of becoming a 20-10-50 guy for the third time after consecutive trades from two 50-loss teams to another 50-loss team (the Griz were 24-58 last season). In my humble opinion, that marks Z-Bo as the classic 20-10-50 guy.

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Blogger Dan B. said...
Z-Bo is like the gift that just keeps on giving. You know, unless you expect that gift to be winning games. In that case you get nothing.

Unrelated amazing picture alert: Two unbelievable jerseys.

Blogger Don Ebay Mølse said...
but at least he's trying right?... baah who am i kidding

Blogger AnacondaHL said...
With respect to ignoring Pace, this decade is on track for being the worst dilution since the free shooting racism Russell era and the freewheeling coke and ABA era (going by Simmons era labels)

2009-10 additional 20-10-50 watch:
Brook Lopez, 18.6-8.5, NJN 0-8
Chris Kaman, 21.7-9.6, LAC 3-6
Chris Bosh, 28.9-11.5, TOR 4-4 (last season went 33-49)

Blogger chris said...
AnacondaHL: In the 1960s and 1970s, my guess is that expansion led to more teams being so mediocre (i.e. Chicago Packers, San Diego Rockets, Seattle Supersonics, Buffalo Braves, Portland Blazers).

Then again, Isiah Thomas's former employer tends to show up regularly here...

Anonymous Anonymous said...
Jefferson needs to pick up the scoring to keep pace with ZBO if he has any hope of becoming the defining 20-10-50 guy.

Smart money is on ZBO, but I think Al Jefferson just might be able to surpass him.

Blogger starang said...
Great jargon/stat/breakdown. It does say a lot about individual players.

However, it is very limited to big players due to rebounds...yet there are guards that I feel like are in the same league as a Randolph or a Brand...Marbury (as you pointed out) being first to jump to mind...yet he doesn't make this list.

Anonymous Barry said...
That kind of performance-without-wins makes Zach a special player.

Anonymous kazam92 said...
Well done. Although you obviously cannot compare some of these guys to Randolph. You legitimately could feel bad for Shareef Abdur-Rahim being on such bad teams for example. Randolph? No siree.

Anonymous Anonymous said...
In response to the Byron Scott firing...

1) Why do my blazers have to play them next and will be subject to the dead coach bounce? Isn't that wrong in some form?

2) So the owner basically is cheap and decides to cut some key players then blames the coach and fires him? Why doesn't the owner just sell instead of ruin that franchise?

3) Wow this really reinforces your comments earlier regarding the fail of coach of the year. So on average is Mike Brown fired this season or next season?

Blogger tonious35 said...
UPDATE!! 2-time lame duck coach Byron Scott has been fired. This won't solve the problem of letting Emeka Okafor screwing up the offense or making James Posey actually work hard for his new-earned money. But after the 'bawful whooping in PHX, a scapegoat for Shinn's floundering team has been found.

Blogger Dan B. said...
Well, looks like the Hornets can stop quitting on their coach. Byron Scott is the first coach of the season to get the axe. It's possible we could see a nice dead coach bounce here, but the talent level on the Hornets roster this year might not be up to the task. Chris Paul's been carrying the entire team on his back so far this season and is at the brink of losing it. We were about three more weeks of frustration away from finding his teammates' bodies in a dumpster. Maybe the new coaching situation will delay that by a few more weeks.

Blogger Unknown said...
Coach of the year curse continues. I would want to stay as far away from that thing as possible.

Blogger Wild Yams said...
For all the Suns fans here, there's an interesting writeup on Phoenix over on Forum Blue & Gold in which they say this is the best Suns team Nash has been on. I don't know if I'd agree with that, but there's some good analysis of what they're doing this year and why it's better than past SSOL teams. Warning: there is a little bit about the Lakers in that entry, as it's written to preview tonight's game, but the vast majority of it is just about the Suns.

Anonymous Anonymous said...
I don't disagree with the firing, but the timing is insane. The Spurs started out 2-5 last year (granted, I don't think they had Ginobli or Parker), but does that automatically mean that Pop should have been axed? The Nets are 0-8 and they aren't firing their coach, yet. The difference is that those teams know who they are (the Spurs are a 50 win team and can weather the storm, the Nets are saving up for LeBron and can suck this year with little consequence), meanwhile the Hornets have no clue.

And while I don't mean to take a cheap shot at New Orleans, but this was over-reaction to a team that made the playoffs in the last two years. If they had the faith to keep Byron Scott after getting killed at home by 58 points to Denver in a playoff game, then have the guts to at least wait until the new year to right the ship. You may have just handed the Lakers their coach-in-waiting, and you may have started the process of angering Chris Paul to the point where he could jump in 2012.

Blogger AnacondaHL said...
Yams: "Amundson is like Davd Lee with defence". Reverse jinx attempt detected!

PHX plane landed at 1am last night. 4th game in 5 nights. Lakers had 3 days rest. Phoenix's pythag W-L is 6-3. My major hopes for tonight are that everyone stays healthy, and turns down offers of Korean women from Donald Sterling.

Blogger chris said...
You know, it just hit me.

The only way for Basketbawful to appropriately mock the NBA Coach of the Year award...is to give out an award every season to a DESERVING coach in the Association. (Ironic, I know. Yes. EXACTLY!)

In theory it should be the other way around, right? Of course, theory and reality don't always meet in the same corners of the universe...especially a universe where lacktion is critical for winning.

Blogger chris said...
And now, since there's no WOTN today...the WEDNESDAY LACKTION REPORT is upon us:

First off, dishonorable mention tonight goes out to Peja Stojakovic, who ruined an epic eight-brick performance as a starter by accruing two boards to miss out on permanent notoriety in the lacktion ledger. (Maybe those two rebounds are why Byron Scott got pinkslipped!!!!!) Now here goes...

Jazz-Celtics: In another pedestrian win for the C's, Doc Rivers unboxed a human victory cigar, with Bill Walker collecting a 2.1 trillion.

Hawks-Knicks: Joe Smith took a foul and gave up the rock once for a +2 suck differential in 1:31, while fellow Atlantans Jeff Teague and Randolph Morris pawed at a 1.5 trillion banknote in the same timespan.

Sixers-Nets: Royal Ivey returned to form tonight by crowning himself the recepient of 7.6 trillion - the biggest payout in the Association so far! Though the Nyets lost on a botched last-second inbound pass, it wasn't due to avoidance of wealth, as Courtney Lee played through a groin injury (which ESPN claims kept him on the bench all night) to take down 1.85 trillion in rubles.

Bobcats-Pistons: Stephen Graham quickly cracked open a copy of Starfox for His Airness, resulting in a 7 second Super Mario!!!!

Nuggets-Bucks: Roko Ukic fouled twice for a +2 in 3:28.

Blazers-Wolves: Dante Cunningham managed to Astoturf himself a 3.35 trillion fortune for Portland, while on Kevin McFail's former side of the court, Damien Wilkins was bedeviled by a brick and foul each for a +2 in 5:08, and Oleksiy Pecherov followed that up with a brick from Mary Tyler Moore's statue for a +1 in 2:30.

Mavs-Spurs: James Singleton selected one-player mode in Tag Team Pro Wrestling for a 56 second Mario; San Antonio's Theo Ratliff then plugged his controller in for a 42 second Mario of his own which somehow included both a turnover AND an assist.

Grizzlies-Rockets: Hamed Haddadi had himself a rebound in 2:46, but his happiness was tempered by two fouls for a 2:1 Voskuhl. Houston's David Andersen made a field goal for two points in 7:02, but three fouls and a giveaway led to a 4:2 Voskuhl.

Thunder-Clippers: The Team Who Is Who We Thought They Were may be unable to win games, but it certainly isn't for a lack of lacktion. Mardy Collins fouled once for a +1 in 4:08, and Ricky Davis became Richie Rich with a 6.85 trillion! Steve Novak sauntered into a session of Super Pitfall for a 13-second Mario. And DeAndre Jordan pulled off one minor ball robbery in 3:01, only to foul twice and lose the rock once for a 3:0 Voskuhl - his third Voskuhl this season.

Anonymous laddder said...
Come to think of it, the only reason why Jerry Sloan is the longest tenured coach is because he never won the COTY award!!!

Coaches be warned:: Decline the COTY award...its the feel good award that will strike you down with full force, in a season or two..

As for z-bo..i never liked the guy, but i read somewhere that he is actually trying this season to be a...teammate!

Blogger chris said...
laddder: Let's pull out the recent post on Bawful that proves your assertion right here and there! :D

Blogger chris said...
And, Hornets GM Jeff Bower, with NO coaching experience, will be behind the bench in the Crescent City! Is _he_ chasing the Coach of the Year award himself!?

Blogger stephanie g said...
Playing Golden State. Where Granger getting a career high 16 rebounds happens.

Speaking of Golden State...

From a brief ESPN.com article on Stephen Jackson (one of my favorite former Hawks) which "explains" his lack of playing time last night:

"[Jackson] played just 18 minutes Wednesday night. Nelson said Jackson had a sore hip or back and wasn't moving well during a 108-94 loss at Indiana. The disgruntled swingman said he felt fine."

Is it just me, or is that hilarious. Nelson has better communication channels with S-Jax's hip and/or back than he does with S-Jax's brain.

Also, it must be noted that Antoine "Bad Checks" Walker was 0.6 rebounds per game away from being a 20-10-69 guy with my miserable 04-05 Hawks.

Anonymous laddder said...
chris --

I'm afraid the COTY probably doesn't curse those who have a part time job...particularly if their other job is being the GM.

Jeff Bower = Dunleavy 2.0

Anonymous Anonymous said...
Might want to check Zach at 23ppg and 10 rpg for the 32win 50 loss 2006-2007 Portland Trailblazers.