When I think of Larry Bird's defense, I think of weak side steals, but nothing more than that being spectacular. I've never treated his three All-Defense (2nd) teams with much allowance.
But browsing at his stats here, http://www.basketball-reference.com/.../birdla01.html
, I noticed how he led the league in Defensive Win Shares four times. What gives?
Now, I've never known the calculation for individual Defensive Rating (it's in that book by Dean Oliver, Basketball by Numbers, but I've never seen the formula leaked online), which is a part of Defensive Win Shares.
I was wondering how this is possible. Could it be that the formula gives extra defensive credit for getting steals, blocks and (defensive) rebounds, more than Parish/McHale/Johnson in 1986 for example, which combined with his team's league-best Defensive Rating would put him on top? (I've always noticed how defensive specialists without defensive stats like Chuck Hayes and Joe Dumars didn't have great Defensive Ratings). Or was he really responsible for a lot of missed shots? (directly or indirectly)
What do you guys think?