General Question

Ponderer983's avatar

Why are sports postseasons set up like this?

Asked by Ponderer983 (6411points) July 29th, 2012

I understand baseball having a best of 5 or 7, seeing as though each day the team is a little different based on the starting pitcher. I understand football being a one game deal, as you run the same team out there every day. But why are hockey and basketball best of ‘X’ series when, like football, they are running the same team out there everyday? Seems to me a one game playoff would suffice in those sports as well, no?

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7 Answers

funkdaddy's avatar

Football is a series of one game playoffs because the games are so destructive to the teams, a longer series would make it more about attrition and you’d see more intentional injuries early in a 3 or 5 game series. So it’s the oddball.

Two explanations for most other sports -

The purist will say that the goal of the playoffs is to have the best team win. A longer series will even out some of the variance (bad calls, bounces, a bad night by a star player) and the better team should have a better chance to win. You often hear “Team A has a chance to take a few games, but I don’t see how they can win 4 of 7 from Team B”... the good teams are usually close enough in talent that anybody could win on any night, but can they win four times?

The cynic will tell you more games leads to more seats to sell at inflated playoff pricing and greater revenue for the leagues and their TV partners.

The truth is probably a little bit of explanation A and a little bit of explanation B.

_Whitetigress's avatar

Well because the respective leagues can and will make money off the revenues, different days of playoffs=different days of different people buying tickets, keeps fans interested. NFL too much wear and tear on players. Hockey and NBA simply just choose to construct their business in this manner.

zenvelo's avatar

It’s all about money. Baseball just added an extra wild card slot and will have the two wild cards play one game against each other, and sportswriters are already trying to figure out when two more games will be added to that. It’s ridiculous, the season will have to start about March 21st pretty soon.

And the NBA and NHL are silly too, you don’t even need a winning season to get into the playoffs. The playoffs last almost as long as the regular season.

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Ponderer983's avatar

Money hungry bastards lol.

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