Monday, January 10, 2011

Why you should have known Seattle would beat New Orleans

Seattle beat New Orleans Saturday in what appears to be one of the biggest upsets in recent playoff memory, but was it really?

Seattle played like two different teams much of the season, and that can be seen in their performance chart.

Unlike any other chart I recall, Seattle was either good or bad.  All of their wins are well above and not overlapping their current rating and all their losses were well below.  In their wins their average rating was 86.939 and in their losses it was 66.026.

Of their 7 (coming in, now 8) good games, 5 were at home and only 2 on the road.  Of their 9 bad games, 6 were on the road.  So if they were going to play well it was most likely going to be at home.

New Orleans on the other hand was not such a Jekyll and Hyde team with a good third to nearly half of their games being close to their overall rating, and even some of the losses being a decent result.

Now, Vegas, or more accurate the voting public betting the game and causing Vegas to set the line, had New Orleans by 10+ points.  Even just looking at the overall ratings my computer said that was way too much having New Orleans by just 4.5, but taking the above analysis into account, could you actually predict a Seattle win?

A good Seattle was going to play to around an 86 rating and there was a good chance the good Seattle would show up at home, against a New Orleans team that had a rating around 83 coming in.  Tack on some home field advantage and you actually have a pick of Seattle by 6!  Given that they won by 5, that is pretty darn close.

If you were a newsletter subscriber, you would have gotten a preview with these charts and information.  It's not too late to sign-up for the rest of the playoffs.