The Power Rating Differential (PRD) for an NBA game is calculated from team performance levels. Performance factors in the NBA include actual straight up (SU) winning percentage, winning & losing streaks, offensive & defensive points, days of rest and strength of schedule. Successful handicapping by POINTSPREADWINNERS.COM is predicated on weighing a team’s penchant for winning and losing games just as much as the actual scoring and statistical categories that define an NBA team’s performance level.
Moreover, the performance factors are analyzed over a short, middle and long term period of games for each opponent to compute each team’s numerical power rating. The short term consists of an NBA team’s performance over its last 1-4 games, the mid term is an NBA team’s performance in its last 6-8 games and the long term is season-to-date overall performance. Also worth consideration, an effective analysis identifies break points in performance that are used to establish the actual number of games applied to the short and mid term evaluation. If a team has played at a fairly consistent performance level over its last 3 games as opposed to a very different level of play 4 games ago, 3 games would be used for the short term.
In addition, POINTSPREADWINNERS.COM applies a momentum factor when comparing the short, mid and long term analysis. In simple terms, a team playing better in the short term than in the mid term would be in a positive momentum mode. Please refer to the next article for more about the momentum factor.
An algorithm that combines the performance factors and momentum of the three time periods is developed to produce the team power rating. Taking the difference between the two opponents’ ratings yields the differential or PRD.