As the Bulls continue to push for the playoffs, many fans and members of the media have put their hopes in the return of Jimmy Butler. But after taking a look at the data, we think the return of another guard may prove to be more impactful: E'Twaun Moore.
Moore has been an underrated contributor on both sides of the ball all season, but in the past month he has really upped his game.
Let's take a look at his offense first:
The first thing to pop out is how much more efficiently Moore has scored over the past 30 days, than the other Bulls guards. According to Vantage Sports, he holds a slim lead over Aaron Brooks in Contested+ FG%, a metric which measures how often a player scores with a defender guarding them closely. Further, Moore only trails Jimmy Butler in Open+ FG%, a metric that unsurprisingly measures how often a player scores with no defender pressure. This all translates into his big lead over the other guards in the point per shot department.
What is surprising, however, is Moore's low points per chance figure. This metric show how many points a player scores per every offensive opportunity, while he's on the court. Typically these numbers correlate together, since great scorers usually get more chances to shoot the ball, but here that is clearly not the case. As the season winds down, Hoiberg may want to run more of the offense through Moore to give him additional opportunities to score.
On the other side of the court, Moore once again performs as one of the best backcourt players for the Bulls. Admirably, he is tops when it comes to Contest+%, and second best in terms of avoiding fouls. That is a remarkable combo, since typically players who contest a lot of shots are more likely to foul the shooter.
As the year winds down, the Bulls should certainly turn to Moore to anchor the second unit, keeping the team within striking distance, or even helping to take the lead while the starters take a break. Given his statistical success on offense and defense, it may be Moore who quietly continues his important contributions, leading the Bulls into the playoffs.