Every good defensive team has a 7 foot holding down the middle of the floor. The five best defensive teams in the NBA this year are the Warriors (Bogut), Rockets (Howard), Spurs (Splitter/Duncan), Memphis (Gasol) and Wizards (Gortat).
Most of the best rim protectors in the NBA are 7 footers, Hibbert (38.5%), Dalembert (38.9%) Howard(39.5%) and Bogut (39.7%)
The Jazz have a remarkable 7 footer in Rudy Gobert. Not only is Gobert listed at 7’1 but he also has a wingspan of 7’9 and a standing reach of 9’7.
In just his second year in the NBA Gobert is beginning to have his impact felt defensively.
When Gobert is in the game teams are shooting 43.6% when he is on the bench they shoot 49.1%. Per 48 minutes opponents score 94.4 pts when Gobert is on the floor and 105.2 when he is on the bench.
No surprise Gobert’s impact is felt around the rim. Opponents shoot just 58% in the restricted area when Rudy is on the floor and only 27.6% of their FGA come in the restricted area. In contrast, when Gobert is on the bench teams shoot 65.2% in the restricted area and take 33% of their shots in the restricted area.
The next step is for the Jazz to figure out how to succeed with Rudy on the floor offensively. The Jazz currently average just 99.2 points per 100 possessions with Rudy on the floor and 105.7 with him off the floor.