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:

Team 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:

Team 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:

Team 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.