November 7, 2013

What is the fattest (and "skinniest") PBA team?

Have you ever wondered what is the fattest PBA team today? It's gotta be Rain or Shine with their Extra Rice, Inc., right? How about the skinniest? Probably the minion-dominated Barako Bull, right?

How do we measure "fatness", anyway? The body mass index (BMI) is the most popular method right now. It is calculated by dividing the mass (or weight, since we're on Earth it's the same) by the square of the height of a player. If you're using SI units (or formerly known as the MKS from "meters, kilograms and seconds"), a BMI of more than 25 means you're fat. But since that's for Caucasians, the suggested BMI for Asians is between 22 and 23. For reference, the average BMI for Filipino males is 22.73.

So which teams are fat and which aren't? First, let's clarify how I got these data. Our friends from Wikipedia somehow have stats of every player's height and weight. While there's no way for me to individually verify those, for lack of a better reference, I've used those. Again, use Wikipedia at your own risk. Also, players inflate their height stats, and honestly I don't know on how they'd lie on weight stats.

Next, team rosters are in flux right now, and with trades, team BMI will change. Barako has 23 players, and the PBA only allows 15 players on the active roster, so these BMI stats are not final. Lastly, these includes draft picks, which may be signed or unsigned. Once the PBA releases the final roster can we only have the "final" BMI per team.

Finally, BMI is not the sole, nor is it the best indicator to determine fatness. Indeed, when it comes to these things there's no single measure that can be used.

I'll no longer keep you waiting. Here you go!
Some surprises, eh? No PBA teams are "officially" fat (at least by Caucasian standards), since no team had an average BMI of more than 25, although several players did surpass that threshold. If we're going into recommended Asian BMI, all teams are fat. And most players surpassed the national average, probably because as basketball players, they are supposedly better fed than their man on the street counterparts.

So wait, why is Ginebra the fattest? Because they have the most number of binge drinkers? Ginebra has three players who have a BMI of 26+: Mamaril, Japeth, and Usita (which was supposedly released). Granted, if we remove Usita (the "fattest" player), Ginebra would still be ahead of everyone except TNT. Wait, TNT? Why not Rain or Shine?

Rain or Shine is under the league average? WTF is this? ROS has 5 players with a BMI of 26+: Nuyles (surprise!), Lee (surprise!), Jervy, Quinahan and Belga, the fattest dude on the league. Since this is an average, they were balanced by the skinny quartet of #3 pick Almazan, Rodriguez, Chan and Arana, who all had a BMI of less than 24.

San Mig is the skinniest team in the PBA. Who would've thought? Guess who is the only "fat" dude on that team? James Yap. Yes, the man with the million foods. Alex Mallari is the skinniest dude in the Mixers team, which probably explains...

Draft pick from UP Sam Marata of Petron is the skinniest player, with a body mass of 16.12.

Next: The oldest and youngest teams in the PBA. And the NBA preview part 2, after the NCAA season finally ends.

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