Playoffs 2017: West Semifinals -- Spurs (2) vs. Rockets (3)

Tony Parker's stats renaissance abruptly halted by playoff-ending injury

San Antonio's depth takes blow in wake of loss of stalwart point guard

John Schuhmann

John Schuhmann

In year 16 and less than two weeks from his 35th birthday, Tony Parker is near the end of his career. In the regular season, Parker averaged his fewest points (10.1 per game) since his rookie year while recording his lowest *effective field goal percentage (48.6 percent) since the 2003-04 season. This was the first season that Parker didn’t record a single double-double.

*Effective field goal percentage = (FGM + (0.5 * 3PM)) / FGA

But Parker had a renaissance in the playoffs. His jump from 10.1 points per game to 15.9 points per game is the eighth biggest increase among players who played at least 50 games in the regular season and have played at least four games in the playoffs.

And his effective field goal percentage jump from 48.6 percent to 58.3 percent is the fifth biggest among players with at least 300 shots in the regular season and 50 in the playoffs.

John Wall is the only other player in the top 10 of both lists through Wednesday.

Parker’s improvement came from the perimeter. His numbers in the paint are about the same as they were in the regular season, but he has shot 55 percent from mid-range (third best among players with at least 25 mid-range attempts) and 11-for-19 from 3-point rage, giving him an effective field goal percentage of 66.3 percent from outside the paint, up from 47.9 percent in the regular season.

The Spurs have the best depth in the league. Parker’s back-up, Patty Mills, is also one of the most improved shooters in the postseason. They’ve had the league’s best aggregate bench NetRtg in the regular season and in the playoffs.

But that depth took a big hit with the news that Parker is done for the playoffs with a ruptured left quad, and a future Hall of Famer has gone down when he was playing his best basketball at the most important time of the season.

John Schuhmann is a staff writer for You can e-mail him here, find his archive here and follow him on Twitter.

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