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Do the Kings Need to Pick Up the Pace?

The Kings played up-tempo much of Wednesday's laugher win over the Wizards, begging the observation that the Kings look at lot better when they speed things up.

Is it true? Are the Kings better in more up-tempo games?

The following graph plots the pace (or number of possessions) in each of the Kings' 20 games against the team's offensive efficiency. Guidelines for Kings and league averages and a trendline are included as well.


There doesn't seem to be a macro-level strong correlation between a game's pace and the Kings' offensive performance. But there are still a few interesting notes.

* The Kings have met or exceeded the NBA's average offensive efficiency eight times this season. In seven of those games, the Kings played at a pace above that of the league average. Only once did the team perform above league average efficiency when playing at a pace slower than league average.

* If you look at that another way: the Kings are 1-5 in terms of hitting league average offensive efficiency or better in slower than average games, and 7-7 in faster games. As such, the Kings are much more likely to be better on offense in faster-paced games.

* The team's six best offensive performances of the season came in games above league average pace. These games weren't much faster than average, though; in fact, the Kings performed poorly on offense in their two fastest-pace games.

IN CONCLUSION: going more up-tempo is not a fail-safe fix, and the Kings offense may still show up only half the time, and I'm not prepared to analyze what this does to the defense. But a more up-tempo performance has helped some so far, and certainly has not hurt.