Specialization in Basketball. Performance Profiling Analysis According to Players’ Specific Position in Formative Stages

Javier Garcia-Rubio, Javier Courel-Ibáñez, Sergio Gonzalez-Espinosa, Sergio José Ibáñez


The aim of this study was to analyze performance differences in basketball players regarding their specific position, from the most important junior basketball competition in Europe, the Adidas Next Generation Tournament. Records from all players competing in 2013-14 and 2014-15 seasons (N = 581; point guard, n = 246; shooting guard, n = 202; centre; n = 133) were studied. Performances parameters were standardized (actions per minute). Calculations included ANOVA, coefficient of variation (CV%) and discriminant analysis. Main results showed differences: between point guards and centres in 2-point shot attempts (T2A and T3A), rebounds (RDef and ROf), assists and blocks made; between point guards and shooting guards in assists and rebounds; and between shooting guards and centres in 3-point shot attempts (T3A). This specialization seems to follow the classical pattern of point guards as passers and far-distance shooters, centres dominants and inside game specialist, and shooting guard assuming an intermediate role. In addition, lower variability was observed in point guards (CVtotal = 77.5%), followed by centres (CVtotal = 79.27%) and shooting guards (CVtotal = 85.88%). These findings may serve to optimize the training process, strengthen specific parameters for each position, and help in talent identification.


Performance analysis; Profiling; Basketball; Team sport

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