Commentary

The power of the charge

Drawing offensive fouls might be more valuable than blocking shots or getting steals

Originally Published: April 2, 2010
By Tom Haberstroh | Special to ESPN Insider
Anderson VarejaoDavid Liam Kyle/Getty ImagesAnderson Varejao's ability to draw charges makes him a much more valuable defender.

The NBA has a problem.

You might not realize this, but the league's official stat-keepers have neglected to record more than 3,000 steals this season. It's true! And last season, they skipped over more than 4,000 of them, at least depending on how you look at things. The statheads aren't cognitively ignoring the change-in-possession play altogether. They see it. But their instructions are to record it in a totally different category that awards zero credit for the defender involved in the play.

See, the "steal" we are talking about is actually a drawn charge.


To find out why drawing charges might be more valuable than getting steals or blocking shots and which players are much better defensively than you ever realized, you must be an ESPN Insider.