It didn’t take long for the Kings to announce a replacement for the departing Roland Beech.
The Kings announced today that they have hired Luke Bornn as their new Vice President of Strategy and Analytics. If you haven’t heard that name before, that’s no surprise. Bornn has no background working in basketball, having recently served as the Head of Analytics for A.S. Roma, an Italian soccer team but he has co-authored 6 papers on basketball since 2014 and he’s also been a mainstay at the MIT Sloan Analytics Conference. He’s also been a statistics professor at Harvard University. Basically, the guy knows his stuff.
Perhaps the best thing to come from this press release is this:
Over the coming weeks, Bornn will work with Divac and the front office to add some of the sharpest minds in the field of statistical sciences to augment the analytics department and continue building a database accessible to players, coaches and basketball operations personnel.
That’s good news, as the Kings currently have one of the smallest front offices in the NBA. Beefing up the analytics department is a welcome step in the right direction.
James Ham was able to catch up with Bornn and talk to him about his new job. You can read the whole thing here but here’s an interesting snippet:
It’s not about me coming in and saying, ‘Here is how to think about the game and here’s the magic numbers,’” Bornn said. “It’s really about me going to them and saying, ‘How do you think about the game, what is it that you care about, is there questions you want answered and can I help you with that?’”
The plan is for Bornn and his team to build a database of sorts that is accessible to players, coaches and the front office that relies heavily on video to show information, instead of just numbers on a page. They will have your conventional statistics, but an array of other options as well specifically created for the team.
“My role with the Kings will be all encompassing,” Bornn said. “It’s player evaluation, opponent scouting, it’s performance - with the sports science group there. We’ll be looking at all aspects, from the basics of stats, all the way to the more advanced metrics.”
We’ll see what other moves the Kings make in terms of adding to their front office over the next few months, because given recent reports that the Kings might have reached out to Sam Hinkie, more could be coming.