Thursday, January 29, 2015

Checking in on the 2015 Pacific Northwest Seattle area 18 & over USTA League 3.5 Men handicapping

I took a look at the Seattle area 18+ 3.5 men to see how the teams looked using my year-end ratings a few weeks ago.  With several matches played, I thought it would be fun to see how things stack up now.

See that original blog for all the caveats on using averaging ratings for a team.

In sub-flight A, Harbor Square was the clear favorite with their average a tenth above the next team and sure enough, they are 3-0 winning 14 of their 15 courts.  There are four 2-1 teams behind them, three of those four being the next best four teams in the pre-season handicapping.  Obviously, looking at records this early doesn't tell the whole story as it depends who you've played, but the handicapping was pretty accurate on this sub-flight so far.

Sub-flight B was tighter with two Sand Point teams on top but five teams all within 0.07.  Some teams have played just two matches so far so harder to tell if things on on track, and three are 2-0, but just two of them were in the top-5 of the handicapping and one of the Sand Point teams already has a loss.  It looks like more volatility here as expected given the closeness of the averages.

Sub-flight C had two teams that appeared to be the front runners.  But it is the two teams that were third and fourth that are undefeated and on top of the sub-flight.  The top two teams in the handicapping are 2-1 and 1-1 to start the year.

Sunday, January 25, 2015

Interesting USTA League Stats - Who appeals the most and what direction? 2014 year-end NTRP rating appeal stats

When USTA League year-end ratings come out, there are a variety of reactions.

First, some players are able to accomplish a goal and get bumped up while others get bumped up and wish they hadn't been.

Second, and on the other end of the spectrum, are those that get bumped down, some grateful to be after a bad year but others that are upset and which they'd stayed up.

Third, there are players that don't get bumped either way and wish they had been.

There was recently a question posed on the Talk Tennis forum asking why men want to be rated lower and women higher.  It is an interesting question, but first we have to determine if there is any truth to the premise in the question.

From my experience doing Estimated Dynamic NTRP Rating Reports for players, I would say that it is more common that women want to get bumped up than men, but some of that is based on the level a player is at.  But it is always better to look at the data as a whole than to rely on anecdotal evidence.

With the year-end ratings having come out near two months ago now, those players that are going to appeal likely have by now, so it is actually a pretty good time to take a look at how many players have appealed their rating, which direction they appealed, and see if there are any trends by gender or level.

First, lets look at how many appeals there were by men and women.


We see that women appealed up quite a bit more than down, and then men were the opposite and appealed down a lot more than up.  So if appeals are any indication, it does appear that women do want to be rated higher and men lower.  There appears to be some truth to the premise of the TT question.

But let's dig deeper and look at the numbers by gender and level.  First the women.

We see a clear bias towards appealing up for 2.5s, 3.0s, and 3.5s, but an abrupt switch to appealing down once women reach 4.0.  One might hypothesize that women want to get to 4.0 to achieve that, but once there if they don't do well, they want back to 3.5.  Perhaps the sweet spot for women would be a 3.75 level!

Now the men.

The men have a significant bias towards appealing up at 3.0 and below, but it is pretty even at 3.5 and then there are a huge number of 4.0s and above that want to appeal down and hardly any appealing up.  So interestingly the sweet spot for the men seems to be 3.5.

So, why do women appeal up more and men down more?  The easy answer is that women see their rating as a status symbol and so want to have the higher rating, while men find it more important to win and it is easier to do so if you play at a lower level.

But what do you think?



Saturday, January 17, 2015

Handicapping the 2015 Pacific Northwest Seattle area 18 & over USTA League 4.5 Men

The Pacific Northwest team from the Seattle area won the National Championship for the 18 & over 4.5 Men, and while there were massive bump ups to 5.0, I thought it would be interesting to take a look at the teams and see who the favorite might be to repeat.

The ratings below are averages of the entire roster and are using the ratings I have each player at for the start of the year and do not reflect any matches played thus far.

This follows the handicapping I did of the 3.5 Men and 3.5 Women. And as stated for those, I'll preface this by saying I'm reporting an average rating for a team, and a lot goes into determining who wins a team match beyond that, e.g. who actually plays in a given match, any stacking that may take place, specific match-ups, new self-rated players, and players getting better or worse from the rating I've calculated over the course of the season, so this by no means should be construed as a guarantee of what will happen.

In sub-flight A it is pretty tight at the top with 4 teams with average ratings within 0.04.

NameAverage Rating
STC-Vincent4.22
AYTC-Dao4.21
PSC-Moldoveanu4.19
EDG-Le4.18
TCSP-Casazza4.14
BAIN-Blacker4.06
HBSQ-Reni4.02
AYTC-Nguyen4.01

So far, the three matches played have gone as expected with the higher average team winning the team match.

Sub-flight B doesn't look quite as deep, but has a similar profile.

NameAverage Rating
MI-Diereckx4.19
AYTC-Fong4.18
TCSP-Nguyen4.15
AYTC-Grayson4.12
NTC-Stanley4.1
GC-Gardner4.1
ETC-Roach4.02
CP-Avery4
So far, the three matches played have gone as expected with the higher average team winning the team match as well.

What do you think?

Friday, January 16, 2015

Handicapping the 2015 Pacific Northwest Seattle area 18 & over USTA League 3.5 Women

I handicapped the 3.5 Men's flight in the PNW Seattle area of the USTA League, and not wanting to leave the women out, here is how the 3.5 Women's flight in the same district looks.

Again, I'l preface this by saying I'm reporting an average rating for a team, and a lot goes into determining who wins a team match beyond that, e.g. who actually plays in a given match, any stacking that may take place, specific match-ups, new self-rated players, and players getting better or worse from the rating I've calculated over the course of the season, so this by no means should be construed as a guarantee of what will happen.

All that said, this is what sub-flight A looks like:

NameAverage Rating
ACES-Edwards3.26
NTC-Gallagher3.22
HBSQ-Liner3.21
CP-Fusetti3.21
RBW-Myerchin3.18
TCSP-Jolly3.13
MC-Wyer3.09
BELL-Boarnets3.07
TCSP-Tronquet3.05

Note that some of the teams with lower averages have a number of 3.0s playing up which pulls their average down a bit.  But if they play their stronger players or get good match-ups, they could still win their share of matches.

Sub-flight B looks like:

NameAverage Rating
ETC-Grape Stompers-Kirkland3.36
AYTC-Wyman3.26
RBW-Shone3.16
BETC-Hollar3.15
EDG-Black Diamonds-Wong3.11
BETC-Alquiza3.09
TCSP-Rogers3.08
TCSP-Quam3.05
ACES-Uyesgui2.98
There is what appears to be a stronger team from ETC, but otherwise a similar break down and same comment about the teams with a lower average.

There are several daytime leagues as well but they start later and so the rosters are not nearly as complete yet so it doesn't really make sense to look at averages.

What do you think?


Monday, January 12, 2015

Handicapping the 2015 Pacific Northwest Seattle area 18 & over USTA League 3.5 Men

It is the start of a new year, teams have formed, and play is about to begin, or has already started.  Some captains have recruited players and think they have a team that can make a run at playoffs and beyond and excitement is in the air.  But have all these recruiting efforts succeeded and is the team favored to win their sub-flight let alone advance out of their area?

Given that I have estimated dynamic NTRP ratings, I thought it would be interesting to start to take a look at handicapping flights to see who is favored to win a sub-flight.  Being that I am from the PNW, I thought I'd take a look at the 18 & over 3.5 men's flight in the Northwest Washington area (Seattle).

I will preface this with a few comments.  First, I am not associated with any team in this flight, although I do know some players in it, I don't have a "horse in this race" and am just reporting unbiased numbers.  Second, I'm reporting an average rating for a team, and a lot goes into determining who wins a team match beyond that, e.g. who actually plays in a given match, any stacking that may take place, specific match-ups, new self-rated players, and players getting better or worse from the rating I've calculated over the course of the season, so this by no means should be construed as a guarantee of what will happen.

But it is fun to look at and speculate, so let's see what the numbers say!

Here is what sub-flight A looks like:

NameAverage Rating
HBSQ-Capretto3.39
ACES-Nevins3.29
AYTC-Schelley3.21
TCSP-Rogers3.19
BETC-Sto. Domingo3.17
ETC-FRNDS-Karur3.15
MI-McLaughlin3.15
RBW-Schmid3.10
BC-Honey Badgers-Brandenfels3.09
AYTC-Herrera3.06

Harbor Square appears to be the strongest team in this sub-flight but a few teams could challenge them if Harbor Square doesn't field the right line-up or play up to their ratings.

Sub-flight B has:

NameAverage Rating
TCSP-Gipson3.37
TCSP-SMACK 3.5-Buckwalter3.36
ACES-Uyesugi13.33
AYTC-Mercer3.31
BC-Simpson3.30
PL-Coffey3.23
CAC/SL-Bean3.22
PSC-Choi3.15
AYTC-To3.11
ETC-Huh3.01
This sub-flight looks a lot tighter with five teams averaging 3.30 or higher.  If no team separates from the pack, it is easy to conceive that this will be a dogfight and there could be a one-loss sub-flight winner and two-loss team make the playoffs.

It is interesting to see that the top two teams both play out of Sand Point.  Both may make the playoffs and one could advance on to Sectionals, but just think what a "super team" with the best from both teams might have been like on paper!

The last sub-flight C has:

NameAverage Rating
GC-Hummer3.31
CP-Leidle3.30
FC-Basha3.19
BC-Vegarra3.12
AYTC-Scafaro3.10
EDG-Mach3.08
RBW-Wong3.05
TCSP-Colee3.03
ACES-Uyesugi23.01

This flight is not as strong on paper but has two closely rated teams at the top that could be the likely sub-flight winner.

Who is the favorite to win local playoffs?  On paper it would seem to be Harbor Square or one of the Sand Point teams, but a lot can change over the course of a season.  I'll try to check back  periodically to see how things stack up.

Friday, January 9, 2015

Happy New Year! USTA year 2015 dynamic rating reports are now available

Happy New Year!

It is 2015, and in my section and many others, 2015 leagues are now getting started.  Yes, there have been early start leagues that began play as early as last summer and fall, but the bulk of 2015 league play in the 18+ and 40+ divisions will take place from now thru June/July.

With play beginning, players will be playing matches that affect their Dynamic NTRP rating and for those that are curious about where their rating falls and how they are doing to start the year, it is time to think about getting an Estimated Dynamic NTRP Rating Report.  As I did last year, I'm offering individual and team reports, as well as being able to do custom lists or other reports.

Reports for 2015 will begin with matches played on or after November 10th as the 2014 league year ended when Nationals finished on the 9th.  Through the end of the year, I was offering extended reports for 2014 that included matches played in November and December, but those matches will now be part of a 2015 report.  For anyone that still wants a 2014 report to see why they were/weren't bumped up/down or just to see how close they were, I can certainly still do those and will give a discount of those are done at the same time as a 2015 report.  I can also do reports for 2013.

To arrive at an accurate starting rating for 2015, I've done a detailed analysis of how the USTA adjusted player's ratings by section and district as some were seemingly given significant manual adjustments, and I'll comment on this for anyone getting a 2014 or 2015 report.

Captains may be interested in team reports even before play begins as this is an easy way to get insight into where all your player's fall entering the year, and also a great way to see who plays well with who in the partner report.  And hardcore captains can get reports on opposing teams to scout them and determine when they need to plan to have their strongest line-ups available.

Or, if a league doesn't start right away and you are still forming a team and have playoff aspirations, getting lists of ratings is the best way to identify who to recruit to maximize the chances of getting to and advancing in the post-season.

Last, all 2014 and 2015 reports will include all the enhancements I made last year including calling out playoff matches on the chart, the partner report showing how a player's matches rate with their different partners, and the chart and summary breaking out singles and doubles results and matches.

As always, contact me for more information or to request a report.

Happy playing!

Sunday, December 28, 2014

2015 has already begun, last chance to get extended 2014 reports,

Most of you know that 2014 year-end ratings came out at the beginning of this month, and if you've been reading this blog, you know that these ratings actually included matches played through just 11/9/14.  So what happens to the matches after 11/9?

They actually are part of the 2015 league year.  That year generally runs from November thru October, the specific end date depends on when Adult Nationals finish, and year-end ratings generally come out the Monday after Thanksgiving (to confuse things though, the USTA gives a year-end rating date of 12/31).  So there is no other place for the matches after 11/9 to go than into the 2015 calculations.

So if you've played matches after 11/9, you've actually started 2015 already!

So if you get an Estimated Dynamic NTRP Rating Report now, what do you get?  For the next couple days, you actually have a choice.  If you'd like your 2015 report showing just the matches since 11/9, I can do that.  But if you'd like an "extended" 2014 report, I can still do it thru 12/31.  This will show you your normal 2014 report, but just tack on the matches after 11/9 as if it was all part of the same year.

Not only does the extended report save you money by giving you two reports in one in a way, this sort of gives you a "what if" so you can see what your year-end rating might have been if those last few matches had been included in 2014.  And I've seen a few cases where someone's rating did go above/below a bump threshold after 11/9.

As always, if interested, contact me!