Do the Golden State Warriors Have Hot Hands?


Star Golden State Warriors Steph Curry, Klay Thompson, and Kevin Durant are great shooters but they are not streak shooters. Only rarely do they show signs of a hot hand. This conclusion is based on an empirical analysis of field goal and free throw data from the 82 regular season and 17 postseason games played by the Warriors in 2016–2017. Our analysis is inspired by the iconic 1985 hot-hand study by Thomas Gilovitch, Robert Vallone and Amos Tversky, but uses a permutation test to automatically account for Josh Miller and Adam Sanjurjo’s recent small sample correction. In this study we show how long standing problems can be reexamined using nonparametric statistics to avoid faulty hypothesis tests due to misspecified distributions.

Publication date: 
November 4, 2017
Publication type: 
Other Research Areas