Take a look at the advanced stats of Ginebra this Governor’s Cup. No Slaughter, Japeth has just returned, take a look at who is leading them in Offensive Ratings.

Ginebra stats 1

Yes, that’s right. Out of all the players who have played all five of their games, rookie big Rodney Brondial is leading the pack.

How could this be?

It boils down to the fact that there is more to an offense than merely scoring. While the end-goal of basketball is to out-score your opponents, there are lots of factors that help a team’s chances to do so. One of the overlooked ways a player can contribute on offense is the offensive rebound, and that is exactly what Brondial brings to his team.

Ginebra is not a good shooting team. They average 41.4% from the field, and attempt nearly the least amount of shots per game at only 76.8 which is way below the league average of 81 attempts a game. The only thing keeping Ginebra afloat is the fact that they play at a somewhat fast pace at 94.8 which somewhat makes up for their lack of efficiency from the field.

This is where Brondial’s contribution becomes crucial. With offensive rebounds come added possessions for your team and one less for the opposing team. Checking Brondial’s box stats can be a bit misleading. He averages 2.2 offensive rebounds a game behind Orlando Johnson with 2.4 a game and Japeth Aguilar with 3 per game. However, Brondial does it in half the game time the other two take.

A look at the advanced statistics shows his contribution more clearly.

ginebra stats 2

Brondial leads his team in offensive rebounding percentage.

What does that mean?

It means he is the player on his team who is most likely to give them an extra possession and deny one from their opponent. Putting this into perspective, he is the seventh in the league in offensive rebounding percentage among players who have played at least five games thus far. He is ahead of known work horses such as Asi Taulava, Marc Pingris and Travis Romeo. Bottom line: His presence on the floor translates into extra-possessions for Ginebra which they so desperately need.

Worth noting as well, is the fact that rebounding is more than just getting the actual rebounds. It’s also about not allowing the other team to get rebounds, which Rodney has excelled in. He may not be the most athletic guy on the court but his rebounding instincts are fundamentally sound and he boxes out and positions himself between an opponent and the rim. The numbers bear this out — Ginebra, as a team, rebounds better when Brondial is on the court.

Conference On-Court Off-Court Net
Team ORB% Opp ORB% Net Team ORB% Opp ORB% Net Team ORB% Opp ORB Net
2014-15 Philippine Cup 39.6% 24.0% 15.7% 34.7% 27.3% 7.4% 5.0% -3.3% 8.2%
2015 Governor’s Cup 33.0% 28.1% 4.9% 21.3% 26.1% -4.8% 11.7% 2.0% 9.6%

He also has a really low usage percentage at 9.3%. They don’t run plays for him, they don’t look to him to run their offense, he’s not even there to attempt shots. And it shouldn’t really come as a surprise.

It’s no secret that Brondial was scouted by Adamson’s Coach Leo Austria tipping in shot after shot during a barangay league. His impact on the Falcons was a work horse on the glass and an energy player on both sides of the floor. It’s also pretty obvious who he draws inspiration for his game from.

Rodney Brondial playfully wears a Rodman jersey after a pre-season tournament game in 2012, years before entering the PBA (Photo credit: Rachel Joyce Burce, The Adamson Chronicle)

Rodney Brondial playfully wears a Rodman jersey after a pre-season tournament game in 2012, years before entering the PBA (Photo credit: Rachel Joyce Burce, The Adamson Chronicle)

Rodney “Rodman” Brondial

Just like Dennis Rodman, Rodney prides himself in his effort on the boards. Not the biggest man on the floor, he manages to hustle on the offensive glass and get his points through those rebounds. His field goal effectiveness is decent enough at 50%, but not where it should be for someone who takes shots close to the basket. He will be happy in any game where he has 0 points out of 0 attempts as long as he rebounds well. And right now, he just might be what Ginebra needs.

Ginebra’s offense is stacked with players who can create shots and score. They can take their pick of who they want managing their offense. Unfortunately picking one scorer over another takes attempts away from the ones without the ball. Rodney Brondial doesn’t need that. Not only is he not concerned with taking any of their attempts away from them, he’s out there trying to get them even more.

Right now he is making the most of his limited playing time, something the Ginebra coaching staff might want to fix considering his high offensive rating. His stats show that he is making big contributions to their offense. He doesn’t score many points, but the extra possessions he gives them are crucial. You don’t always have to score to contribute to a team’s offense.

*This feature is dedicated to my girlfriend Shiela Marie Edubas who just had her 23rd birthday last Friday, and is a big fan of Rodney Brondial as seen in the photo below. HAPPY BIRTHDAY!