Author Topic: Do teams strategically lose to teams that wants to make playoffs?  (Read 874 times)

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Online manl_lui

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This just popped up in my head for some reason and I am very curious to know the answer. I know it has been said that some teams try to win or lose to get a certain seeding and matchup against a team they want to face or avoid in the playoffs

but how about losing or winning against a team to benefit themselves. Take the Celtics for example, losing tonight against the Magics (not saying we are losing on purpose anyways),

Brooklyn now faces against Philly and Orlando faces Toronto in the first round possibly. Do you think it would benefit the Celtics say if we lose to the Magics on purpose because they match up better against the 76ers in which either an upset will happen or tire them enough for us to face them if we make it to the 2nd round

I apologize if this doesn't make sense

Re: Do teams strategically lose to teams that wants to make playoffs?
« Reply #1 on: April 07, 2019, 11:50:55 PM »

Offline ozgod

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This just popped up in my head for some reason and I am very curious to know the answer. I know it has been said that some teams try to win or lose to get a certain seeding and matchup against a team they want to face or avoid in the playoffs

but how about losing or winning against a team to benefit themselves. Take the Celtics for example, losing tonight against the Magics (not saying we are losing on purpose anyways),

Brooklyn now faces against Philly and Orlando faces Toronto in the first round possibly. Do you think it would benefit the Celtics say if we lose to the Magics on purpose because they match up better against the 76ers in which either an upset will happen or tire them enough for us to face them if we make it to the 2nd round

I apologize if this doesn't make sense

I don't think players ever try to lose on purpose when they are on the court. I.e. they don't deliberately miss shots. I think that's a dangerous mindset to get into.

That said, team management might try to lose on purpose, by sitting everyone. Not sure how the NBA views that from a competitiveness point of view, fans pay tickets to watch a competitive game. So they probably sit only a few players so it doesn't look obvious. But I'm sure the players are still trying to win.

Personally I think trying to manipulate results like that might be fun for fans to think about but it's dangerous for teams to do anything other than play at their best with whoever is out on the floor.
Any odd typos are because I suck at typing on an iPhone :D

Re: Do teams strategically lose to teams that wants to make playoffs?
« Reply #2 on: April 07, 2019, 11:51:58 PM »

Online Ogaju

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This just popped up in my head for some reason and I am very curious to know the answer. I know it has been said that some teams try to win or lose to get a certain seeding and matchup against a team they want to face or avoid in the playoffs

but how about losing or winning against a team to benefit themselves. Take the Celtics for example, losing tonight against the Magics (not saying we are losing on purpose anyways),

Brooklyn now faces against Philly and Orlando faces Toronto in the first round possibly. Do you think it would benefit the Celtics say if we lose to the Magics on purpose because they match up better against the 76ers in which either an upset will happen or tire them enough for us to face them if we make it to the 2nd round

I apologize if this doesn't make sense

If it popped up in your head it must have popped in Pop's head, no pun intended.

Re: Do teams strategically lose to teams that wants to make playoffs?
« Reply #3 on: April 08, 2019, 01:32:55 AM »

Offline mr. dee

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I remember back in 2011 where Duncan accused the Grizzlies of intentionally tanking to match them in the first round. That strategy worked for the Grizz, if ever (at least in the first round).

Re: Do teams strategically lose to teams that wants to make playoffs?
« Reply #4 on: April 08, 2019, 02:52:54 AM »

Offline SparzWizard

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Brad better start the 3rd stringers on Game #82 because our first-round match is set after the loss to Orlando.

And the injuries that Smart and Tatum received.

Re: Do teams strategically lose to teams that wants to make playoffs?
« Reply #5 on: April 08, 2019, 03:08:35 AM »

Offline Androslav

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I think they do on some rare occasions, a game or 2.

A lot less definitely than the teams who want to miss playoffs.
We have 3-4 teams each year who try to lose from game 30 onward.
« Last Edit: April 08, 2019, 06:44:32 AM by Androslav »
"The joy of the balling under the rims."

Re: Do teams strategically lose to teams that wants to make playoffs?
« Reply #6 on: April 08, 2019, 06:19:47 AM »

Offline Moranis

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I'm confused, why would Boston care if Philly and Toronto have a tougher 1st round making them more tired for their 2nd round match-up in which neither team would play Boston?
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Re: Do teams strategically lose to teams that wants to make playoffs?
« Reply #7 on: April 08, 2019, 07:36:47 AM »

Offline smokeablount

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I'm confused, why would Boston care if Philly and Toronto have a tougher 1st round making them more tired for their 2nd round match-up in which neither team would play Boston?

Because if it causes them to lose in the 2nd and we were to get lucky and make the conf finals, we'd be in a better spot having avoided them?
Give us this pick, Almighty Red
And forgive us our tanking
As we forgive those who tanked against us
And lead us not into the lottery
But deliver us from losing

-Sexyscottish

Re: Do teams strategically lose to teams that wants to make playoffs?
« Reply #8 on: April 08, 2019, 08:06:25 AM »

Offline More Banners

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Like, if Horford was in the game and took those 3 late 3's that Theis missed against the Magic?

Re: Do teams strategically lose to teams that wants to make playoffs?
« Reply #9 on: April 08, 2019, 09:07:42 AM »

Offline Moranis

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I'm confused, why would Boston care if Philly and Toronto have a tougher 1st round making them more tired for their 2nd round match-up in which neither team would play Boston?

Because if it causes them to lose in the 2nd and we were to get lucky and make the conf finals, we'd be in a better spot having avoided them?
But Philly and Toronto play each other, I mean unless the premise is that somehow they both lose in the 1st round, which seems incredibly unlikely, I don't understand the thread premise.
Historical Draft - Portland Trailblazers
PG - Magic Johnson, Tony Parker
SG - Clyde Drexler, Dennis Johnson, Alvin Robertson
SF - James Worthy, Alex English
PF - Charles Barkley, Ben Wallace
C - Moses Malone, George Mikan, Brad Daugherty

Re: Do teams strategically lose to teams that wants to make playoffs?
« Reply #10 on: April 08, 2019, 09:35:49 AM »

Online Fafnir

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Yes teams will tank games via minutes allocation, DNPs, and just not trying very hard late to setup matchups they like, to help their draft picks, or manipulate the bracket to help themselves.

What players usually don't do is lay down against teams in the playoff race for no reason, they'll usually try and give it an honest go because players don't want to throw a game that effects other teams playoff races if there isn't a reason for it.

You could see this in the Toronto/Miami game and even the Boston/Orlando game. Neither result really matters to BOS/TOR much but the players on the court still tried hard.

Re: Do teams strategically lose to teams that wants to make playoffs?
« Reply #11 on: April 08, 2019, 09:43:41 AM »

Offline smokeablount

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I'm confused, why would Boston care if Philly and Toronto have a tougher 1st round making them more tired for their 2nd round match-up in which neither team would play Boston?

Because if it causes them to lose in the 2nd and we were to get lucky and make the conf finals, we'd be in a better spot having avoided them?
But Philly and Toronto play each other, I mean unless the premise is that somehow they both lose in the 1st round, which seems incredibly unlikely, I don't understand the thread premise.

I'm kinda with you but it seems an obvious positive if teams "better than us" get tired out heading into our series, whether in round 1 or 2.
Give us this pick, Almighty Red
And forgive us our tanking
As we forgive those who tanked against us
And lead us not into the lottery
But deliver us from losing

-Sexyscottish

Re: Do teams strategically lose to teams that wants to make playoffs?
« Reply #12 on: April 08, 2019, 12:27:21 PM »

Offline angryguy77

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From the games I've watched this year, they sure looked like they were trying to lose.