Handball Performance-Index: Data-based, transparent, fair

Data-based. Transparent. Fan-focused. With the beginning of season 2020/21 Handball-Bundesliga GmbH has introduced a new benchmark for evaluating the performance of all players of LIQUI MOLY HBL. The Handball Performance Index was designed in cooperation with Deutsche Kreditbank AG and selected experts from top-level sports and science. It uses selected statistics from all players to evaluate, analyze and compare their athletic performance at all positions.

Who will be the official "DKB Player of the Month"? Which player can look forward to the coveted MVP-Award at the end of the season? And what criteria are actually used to select these players for official fanvotings?
LIQUI MOLY HBL, in cooperation with Deutsche Kreditbank AG (DKB) and a special task force with several experts from sports and science, has devoted itself to all these questions over the past few months. With the help of the wide range of different data and statistics collected during all LIQUI MOLY HBL matches, an index was calculated that makes it possible to transparently evaluate and compare the performance of all players.

Big Data as basis for a fair performance evaluation

For several years now, LIQUI MOLY HBL has been collecting relevant basic statistics for all players in all matches, such as goals, assists and saves. The season statistics provide a basic overview of these values. In addition, innovative tracking technology was introduced for season 2019/20 with the help of the technical data-provider KINEXON, which automatically records further performance and position data for all LIQUI MOLY HBL players in real time. An overview of selected tracking metrics, such as running distance or running speed, is stored in the individual game data.
All of this information and data will be taken into account with immediate effect to calculate the newly defined Handball Performance Index.

What is the Handball Performance Index?

The Handball Performance Index (HPI), which have been introduced for all LIQUI MOLY HBL players at the beginning of season 2020/21, is an innovative evaluation and analysis tool. The HPI is based on the idea to measure and illustrate a player's performance during a single match, a month or an entire season with the help of a concrete numerical value. With each action during a match (e.g. goal, steal, save), a player collects plus and minus points that can affect his personal Handball Performance Index:

  • At the start of the game, the HPI of each player is 100.

  • For each positive action (e.g. goal, assist or save), the player receives plus points.

  • As soon as a player causes a negative action (e.g. turnover, missed shot), his HPI will decrease.

This allows an HPI to be calculated for each player per game, per month or per season, which can be used as a basis for the official MVP-Voting, for example.

How is the weighting of the points carried out?

With the help of the data sets collected by LIQUI MOLY HBL in previous years, the probability of each action was calculated individually. The weighting of the plus and minus points is also based on this calculation. For example, a goal scored right after a fastbreak is statistically much more likely than a goal which is scored from a backcourt-position. As a result, a player receives fewer plus points for a fastbreak-goal than for a backcourt-goal. With the introduction of the Handball Performance Index, a player's successful defensive actions, among other things, are also taken into account statistically. For example, blocks or steals are also rewarded with plus points.

Position-specific comparability is ensured

In modern handball, every player has to deal with different requirements: Depending on the position, the conditions and circumstances under which a player must operate can differ significantly. A Winger, for example, usually has less possession and thus fewer assists than a player from the back. A Pivot, on the other hand, has a higher scoring probability than a Right Back in the action of a free chance of throwing. The HPI takes these position-specific requirements into account and therefore groups all players into separate categories in its calculation, depending on their position. However, this has the consequence that the HPI of a Goalkeeper is difficult to compare with that of a Pivot. Nevertheless, the position-specific comparability is guaranteed.

11.11.2020 -

Transparent and comprehensible - New "Handball Performance Index" enables objective player evaluation

Data based. Transparent. Fan-focused. For season 2020/21 Handball-Bundesliga GmbH is introducing a new benchmark for the performance evaluation of all LIQUI MOLY HBL players. In cooperation with Deutsche Kreditbank AG and selected top-experts of sports and science, the Handball Performance Index was designed to evaluate, analyze and compare sporting performance in all positions using selected statistics from all players.