Category Archives: Basketball

Game Predictions | March Madness 2019

The tables below provide our predictions for all games in the 2019 NCAA Tournament. The tables will be updated after each round of the tournament, with new games/predictions added as they become available. A brief description of how to interpret the predictions is provided above each table, and a summary of the historical accuracy of each model is provided at the end of the post.
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Model 284 Bracket | March Madness 2019

Below is our Model 284 consensus bracket for the 2019 NCAA Tournament. As you will see from our Game-by-Game Predictions and Tournament Simulation results, our bracket does not necessarily advance our model’s predicted winner for every single game. Rather, we use a combination of (1) our model’s individual game predictions, (2) our tournament simulation results, (3) injuries / other factors not captured by our models, and (4) consideration of public picks – to make sure we are differentiating our bracket enough from the most popular choices. For those interested, here is a bracket filled out purely using model predictions. Continue reading Model 284 Bracket | March Madness 2019

Tournament Simulation | March Madness 2019

The article below shows how our models view this year’s tournament field from a simulation perspective. Each table shows the % chance that each team advances to a given round of the tournament (e.g., in the first table, Duke has a 97% chance of advancing to the 2nd round). These figures are calculated based on 60,000 simulations1 of this year’s tournament, which were performed using win probability predictions from our models. Note that play-in game teams are subject to change and are denoted with an *. Continue reading Tournament Simulation | March Madness 2019

NBA Elo Ratings and Simulation

Below is a table of our NBA Elo ratings for the 2018-2019 season along with win totals and playoff probabilities derived from 500 simulations of the 2018-2019 season. Check back over the course of the season as we will continue to update our elo ratings, along with win projections and playoff probabilities.

Elo ratings are a zero-sum rating system where teams are rewarded points after a win and subtracted points after a loss. The magnitude of this adjustment is larger for more unexpected outcomes. For instance, the Golden State Warriors would not receive much of a boost in their elo if they beat the Phoenix Suns because this is what we would expect to happen, but the Phoenix Suns would receive a larger increase in their elo if they managed to upset the Warriors. At Model284, our elos take into account each team’s prior elo rating, margin of victory, home court advantage, and the number of days off for each team prior to the game. Elo ratings do not immediately adjust for injuries, or roster changes from free agency and trades.

TeamEloWinsPlayoff Probability
Milwaukee Bucks175063.1>0.99
Golden State Warriors173059.6>0.99
Toronto Raptors170060.7>0.99
Oklahoma City Thunder166252.8>0.99
Philadelphia 76ers163652.5>0.99
Boston Celtics163351.6>0.99
Houston Rockets161148.30.98
Utah Jazz161049.30.99
Denver Nuggets160953.2>0.99
Portland Trail Blazers160049.10.98
Indiana Pacers159151.4>0.99
San Antonio Spurs157447.10.96
Minnesota Timberwolves152439.10.08
Orlando Magic151939.40.73
Los Angeles Clippers151144.60.77
Brooklyn Nets148440.10.84
Sacramento Kings148041.40.16
Los Angeles Lakers146738.90.05
Miami Heat145837.10.43
Detroit Pistons145437.60.45
New Orleans Pelicans145336.70.01
Charlotte Hornets144736.70.38
Dallas Mavericks144336.40.01
Washington Wizards144035.30.18
Memphis Grizzlies134830.6<0.01
Atlanta Hawks132026.6<0.01
Chicago Bulls127720.2<0.01
Cleveland Cavaliers124117.3<0.01
Phoenix Suns122616.9<0.01
New York Knicks121416.6<0.01

*Last update on February 19th.

Prospect Profile: Zhaire Smith

Leading up to the 2018 NBA Draft on June 21st, we will be using our NBA Draft Models (PNSP Model, Role Probability Model, and Similarity Scores) to investigate this year’s top prospects. These Prospect Profiles look at which stats affect NBA projections, present unique data points from a player’s stats, and give relevant comparisons to current NBA players. You can find all of our Prospect Profiles here or through the header menu above (NBA –> NBA Draft –> Prospect Profiles). In today’s article, we look at Zhaire Smith.

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NBA 2018 Draft Prospect Sentiment Analysis

A couple months ago, we put together a My Model Monday series article that did a text and sentimental analysis of NBA Draft Prospects based on scouting reports. For those that are unaware, sentiment is “the process of computationally identifying and categorizing opinions expressed in a piece of text, especially in order to determine whether the writer’s attitude towards a particular topic, product, etc., is positive, negative, or neutral.” Using Bing Liu’s graded sentiment dictionary, we can analyze text to and identify who is more positively written about. For more information, please read our My Model Monday series article.

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Prospect Profiles: Kevin Huerter

Leading up to the 2018 NBA Draft on June 21st, we will be using our NBA Draft Models (PNSP Model, Role Probability Model, and Similarity Scores) to investigate this year’s top prospects. These Prospect Profiles look at which stats affect NBA projections, present unique data points from a player’s stats, and give relevant comparisons to current NBA players. You can find all of our Prospect Profiles here or through the header menu above (NBA –> NBA Draft –> Prospect Profiles). In today’s article, we look at Kevin Huerter.

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Prospect Profile: Lonnie Walker IV

Leading up to the 2018 NBA Draft on June 21st, we will be using our NBA Draft Models (PNSP Model, Role Probability Model, and Similarity Scores) to investigate this year’s top prospects. These Prospect Profiles look at which stats affect NBA projections, present unique data points from a player’s stats, and give relevant comparisons to current NBA players. You can find all of our Prospect Profiles here or through the header menu above (NBA –> NBA Draft –> Prospect Profiles). In today’s article, we look at Lonnie Walker IV.

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Prospect Profiles: Robert Williams

Leading up to the 2018 NBA Draft on June 21st, we will be using our NBA Draft Models (PNSP Model, Role Probability Model, and Similarity Scores) to investigate this year’s top prospects. These Prospect Profiles look at which stats affect NBA projections, present unique data points from a player’s stats, and give relevant comparisons to current NBA players. You can find all of our Prospect Profiles here or through the header menu above (NBA –> NBA Draft –> Prospect Profiles). In today’s article, we look at Robert Williams

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