Bridging the Gap: Unveiling the Multifaceted Dynamics of NBA Player Evaluation and Compensation through Feature Importance Analysis


Tianzi Zheng, University of Texas at Arlington, USA


This research harnesses intricate feature engineering methodologies to intricately dissect the symbiotic relationship between NBA players' multifaceted attributes, their digital footprint on social media, and the consequent salary allocations. Grounded in the foundational tenets of the tournament and human capital theories, our investigation stands as an avant-garde endeavor, predominantly due to its recourse to the unprecedented dataset derived from the NBA 2K Sports game. This dataset uniquely amalgamates both on-court prowess and off-court digital personas. Our analysis delves deeper, moving beyond the conventional scope of prior studies, which often had a myopic focus on a constrained suite of skill-centric variables. It meticulously assesses the metrics tied to each player, unraveling the nuanced tapestry of their on-field performance juxtaposed with their off-field digital engagements. Central to our exploration is the demystification of the relative gravitas of inherent skill attributes vis-Ã -vis their digital aura in steering salary determinations. The revelations from our study not only furnish invaluable insights pivotal for sports managers and industry stakeholders in sculpting player evaluations and charting career trajectories but also echo in the broader corridors of human resource and leadership management. Our study champions the cause of a nuanced, quantifiable paradigm for assessing individual talents and their holistic contributions, laying a robust groundwork for future research endeavors in the domain.


NBA, sports game, human resource, human capital, video game, salary determination, social media, tournament theory, feature engineering, feature importance

Full Text  Volume 13, Number 20