I noticed in a previous post where I looked into NBA Teams statistical ranking improvements that the Dallas Mavericks have had significant improvement in Personal Fouls this season. Obviously that’s a Team Ranking but my mind went to Luka Doncic, who over the course of his career has often been criticized for his foul troubles.
While there is a different in Technical Fouls and Personal Fouls, but with the NBA API, I could only find access to personal fouls. I ran python code to access the Luka Doncic Foul data. I charted Luka Doncic Personal Foul Total per Season. Last year, 2022-23 was his highest total foul season ever. I know it became a discussion point with Mavericks media and fans.
To dig into this further, I first tried to chart Personal Fouls per month, but with Covid seasons they were playing in atypical months. For the graphic below, I changed the x-axis to the number of months into the season. The chart below is the number of personal fouls for that month and season.
The chart below shows the cumulative number of personal fouls for each month colored by season. It actually looks like he’s improved his personal fouls per season. But 2023-24 is incomplete so let's break it down further by week.
When broken down by week, the result are a little noisy. So after this, I once again give a cummulative view.
The below view is a little easier to tell that he's on a pace to have his best and lowest Personal Fouls year of his career.
With the weekly view, it looks like he’s on pace to have his lowest personal fouls for a season. Which would be quite the improvement since last season was his career high. We’ll revisit this later in the season to see if the trend continued.
This article is what I referenced at the top that compared large statistical changed for each time. From that analysis, I plan to deep dive into specific teams and players.
Let me know if you’ve got any questions or ideas for NBA Analysis for other analytics. I'm interested in looking more into personal fouls for other players. Thanks for reading!