Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Chart of the Day

From the Cheap Talk blog:

source: Cheap Talk

As Cheap Talk explains:
How often should we expect a basketball game to end tied after 48 minutes of play? At first glance it would seem pretty rare. If you look at the distribution of points scored by the home teams and by the visiting teams separately, they look pretty close to a normal distribution with a large variance. If we made the crude hypothesis that the two distributions were statistically independent, then ties would indeed be very rare: 2.29% of all games would reach overtime. . .

But overtime is almost 3 times more frequent than this: 6.26% of all NBA games are tied at the end of regulation play. And games decided by just a few points are surprisingly rare: It is more likely to have a tie than for the game to be decided by two points, and a tie is more than twice as likely as a one-point difference.
(via Coyote Blog)


Assistant Village Idiot said...

I have to wonder if choice of shots in the final minute have something to do with this.

Carl said...


What's your suspicion? Playing for a tie rather than a win?

OBloodyHell said...

> AVI: What's your suspicion? Playing for a tie rather than a win?

I'd suspect he's right. But no, not so much playing for "a tie rather than a win", but the Dye factor: Playing to not lose. Those aren't quite the same. Setting up the easier two than going for three, that kind of thing.

Assistant Village Idiot said...

What OBH said. "We absolutely need two points here. Three would be nice." Or "We are down by three. There is no sense taking the easy two and making our loss a little closer."

There may also be some choices made on the part of the team ahead, though I feel less certain of that. A high risk three pointer that will put the game away with 30 seconds less, versus a drive to the rim that gives you a really good chance of one point and a fair chance of two.