- After an opponent made shot
- After a defensive rebound
- After a turnover
As one would expect, possessions after a turnover are the most efficient, due to their opportunities for fast breaks. However, several people pointed out that the turnover bucket includes both "live ball" turnovers (bad passes, steals, etc.) as well as "dead ball" turnovers (out of bounds, offensive fouls, etc.). If turnover efficiency is driven by fast break opportunities, then possessions off of dead ball turnovers should have a much lower efficiency than their live ball counterparts. Here are the results, aggregated over the past four full NBA seasons (2011-2014):
Possessions off of dead ball turnovers are slightly less efficient than possessions off of made shots, and clearly less efficient than live ball turnover possessions. This is all intuitive, given that a made shot creates a quasi-dead ball situation due to the inbounding process.
For that reason, I will be making a change to my per possession statistics tool. Dead ball turnovers will now be grouped with "After Made Shot" possessions. I could create a separate category, but I'm running out of real estate on the page, and would prefer to keep things simple where I can. And the efficiency graph above supports grouping dead ball turnovers with made shots.
In case you are curious, here is a summary, by season, of the % of turnovers that are live ball.