Big cities may produce the most players, but the smaller ones have much higher efficiency ratings.
L.A. produced the most players in this year's NBA, but it didn't produce the most per 100,000 residents—that honor goes to Saginaw, Michigan.
This little fact comes from the statistical gurus at Best Tickets, who last week released The Unofficial 2013 NBA Player Census. It contains a wealth of visualized data about the entire NBA, including average salary by position (centers and forwards bring in the big bucks) and the average height and weight of each team (the 76ers took first in both categories).
Two of the charts rank the top 10 player-producing cities. The chart showing raw production is pretty much what you'd expect:
Big cities with strong basketball cultures. Makes sense, right? Now look at what cities produced the most players per 100,000:
Saginaw, a little town of a 50,000, has three players in the NBA right now. Baton Rouge, with roughly 230,000, has five players. In keeping with the topic, Best Tickets ranks Saginaw as the most "efficient" pro-basketball producing city in the country, a reference to the formula that stat-obsessives use to rank players' overall performance. But that rating really only applies to this year. While three players in this year's league hail from Saginaw, the city has only produced eight players total in the history of pro ball.
Top image: Kawhi Leonard (R) hails from L.A. Chris Humphreys-USA TODAY Sports/REUTERS