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March 1, 2012
Goaltending
By the Numbers

by Dan Feldman

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Since the start of the 2005-06 season, there have been 3,671 defensive goaltends--nearly a goaltend every two games. Perhaps, none have been more spectacular than JaVale McGee's last week:

In honor of McGee, here are the NBA goaltend-related leaders since 2005-06, when BasketballValue.com's play-by-play data begins, through the All-Star break:

Goaltends (player, goaltends)

1. Dwight Howard, 233
2. Samuel Dalembert, 164
3. JaVale McGee, 115
4. Joel Przybilla, 71
5. Tyrus Thomas, 66
6. Josh Smith, 63
7. Amar'e Stoudemire, 61
8. Kenyon Martin, 50
9. Kris Humphries, 43
9. Chris Bosh, 43
11. Gerald Wallace, 39
12. LeBron James, 38
13. DeAndre Jordan, 37
14. Chris Andersen, 36
15. Kevin Garnett, 36
15. Serge Ibaka, 35
17. Shaquille O'Neal, 34
17. Rudy Gay, 34
19. Chris Kaman, 33
20. Emeka Okafor, 32

Goaltends per game (player, goaltends per game, goaltends, games)

1. Daniel Orton, 0.500, 1, 2
2. JaVale McGee, 0.466, 115, 247
3. Dwight Howard, 0.448, 233, 520
4. Samuel Dalembert, 0.323, 164, 508
5. Bismack Biyombo, 0.226, 7, 31
6. Joel Przybilla, 0.219, 71, 324
7. Tristan Thompson, 0.200, 5, 25
7. Kevin Willis, 0.200, 1, 5
9. Tyrus Thomas, 0.191, 66, 345
10. Sean Williams, 0.186, 24, 129
11. Serge Ibaka, 0.185, 35, 189
12. Pape Sow, 0.184, 9, 49
13. Anthony Randolph, 0.182, 28, 154
14. Hasheem Thabeet, 0.176, 21, 119
15. Kenyon Martin, 0.161, 50, 310
16. DeMarcus Cousins, 0.159, 18, 113
17. DeAndre Jordan, 0.158, 37, 234
18. Amar'e Stoudemire, 0.150, 61, 406
19. Alonzo Mourning, 0.144, 24, 167
20. Chris Andersen, 0.142, 36, 254

Here are annual leaders:

Goaltends (player, goaltends)

  • 2006: Samuel Dalembert, 32
  • 2007: Amar'e Stoudemire, 16
  • 2008: Dwight Howard, 56
  • 2009: Dwight Howard, 47
  • 2010: Dwight Howard, 42
  • 2011: JaVale McGee, 55
  • 2012: JaVale McGee, 22

Goaltends per game (player, goaltends per game, goaltends, games)

  • 2006: Samuel Dalembert, 0.485, 32, 66
  • 2007: Pape Sow, 0.286, 2, 7
  • 2008: Dwight Howard, 0.683, 56, 82
  • 2009: Dwight Howard, 0.595, 47, 79
  • 2010: Dwight Howard, 0.512, 42, 82
  • 2011: JaVale McGee, 0.696, 55, 79
  • 2012: JaVale McGee, 0.667, 22, 33

Some of the above players made the list mostly as a product of heavy minutes. Here are the players who goaltended on a high percentage of their attempted shot blocks.

Goaltends per block (player, goaltends per block, blocks, goaltends)

Minimum: 10 blocks

1. Pape Sow, 0.450, 9, 20
2. Josh Powell, 0.388, 26, 67
3. Jeff Pendergraph, 0.375, 6, 16
4. Esteban Batista, 0.364, 4, 11
5. Joey Dorsey, 0.316, 6, 19
6. Cole Aldrich, 0.286, 4, 14
7. JaVale McGee, 0.252, 115, 457
8. Malik Hairston, 0.250, 4, 16
8. Cheikh Samb, 0.250, 3, 12
10. Justin Williams, 0.238, 5, 21
10. Byron Mullens, 0.238, 5, 21
12. Eric Bledsoe, 0.231, 6, 26
13. Eddy Curry, 0.230, 29, 126
14. Christian Eyenga, 0.219, 7, 32
15. Leandro Barbosa, 0.214, 15, 70
16. DeMar DeRozan, 0.207, 12, 58
17. Ike Diogu, 0.200, 13, 65
17. Pat Burke, 0.200, 3, 15
19. Dwight Howard, 0.199, 233, 1169
20. DJ Mbenga, 0.199, 27, 136

John Wall's name doesn't appear above, but he deserves special recognition. He's already goaltended five shots this season. Eric Bledsoe set the goaltend record in this span for a guard with six last year. That means Wall could set the guard record--during a lockout-shortened season!

Then again, maybe that's not so incredible. Wall is learning from the master.

Dan Feldman is an author of Basketball Prospectus. You can contact Dan by clicking here or click here to see Dan's other articles.

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