What is Tendex?
Tendex is a rating system that evaluates basketball players on a point-per-minute basis. It is the result of a formula that sports writer Dave Heeren developed in 1960 while at the University of Delaware.
Heeren, who retired recently from the South Florida Sun-Sentinel newspaper in Fort Lauderdale, was way ahead of the basketball talent evaluation curve when he factored 10 statistical categories, along with rate of improvement and intangibles, to arrive at a quotient.
The Tendex formula computes points, rebounds, assists, steals, blocked shots, missed shots, turnovers, strength of schedule and game pace (different for up-tempo and slowdown teams).
As a reporter with the St. Petersburg Times in Florida, I met Heeren while reviewing one of his Basketball Abstract books featuring Tendex. I covered the NBA's Orlando Magic and later covered the Detroit Pistons for Booth Newspapers when Heeren taught me the Tendex system.
We later co-wrote Tendex articles for CBS SportsLine and also produced yearly Tendex draft reports for basketball fans and NBA teams.
All told, 14 NBA teams have requested Tendex information on specific players. In addition, a well-known player agent used Tendex to successfully negotiate a new contract for one of his clients.
This is the first time that Tendex has appeared on Tribune-Review Web sites.