Another View: State statistics don’t fully reflect impact of Lyme disease – Press Herald

Another View: State statistics don't fully reflect impact of Lyme disease - Press Herald nevin manimala

Thank you for your Nov. 13 article on the decline in reported cases of Lyme disease. Any attention to this debilitating disease is helpful to all who suffer from its symptoms.

However, the one word that needs to be stressed is “reported.” Any Lyme-literate doctor or person knows full well that the actual number of Lyme cases in Maine is hundreds of times larger than those that are “reported.” In Maine, the tests for the disease are woefully inaccurate and do not indicate the true expanse of the effects on Mainers.

I have had Lyme disease for over 15 years, and it is never “cured” – it only goes into remission and may come back at any time. The experiences I have had personally are so commonplace that it is frightening to all who have the disease. There is no cure, there is no accurate test for its presence, and it is totally debilitating to those who suffer from its effects.

For you to say that the number of cases has decreased is a slap in the face to all who suffer from this. The actual truth is far beyond the information available through the state.

A few years ago, I was involved with getting legislation passed to provide options to those who suffer. The head of the Maine Center for Disease Control came to the Health and Human Services Committee and said, “There is no such thing as long-term Lyme disease.” That has been the opinion of too many physicians and the state itself for far too long.

I know many people who suffer in silence from this disease because it is not recognized for what it is. There are so few doctors in the state who recognize the effects of Lyme. I have seen people crippled, unable to work, suffering from the inability to function as a human being, causing family issues, losing their jobs because of the fog associated with Lyme and generally being looked at as losers because of their inability to live their lives, myself included in this group.

I hope at some time, this debilitating disease will be recognized for how horribly it affects so many people across the state.

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Box score from Kentucky’s overtime loss to Seton Hall – Lexington Herald-Leader

Box score from Kentucky’s overtime loss to Seton Hall - Lexington Herald-Leader nevin manimala
Box score from Kentucky’s overtime loss to Seton Hall - Lexington Herald-Leader nevin manimala

The University of Kentucky men’s basketball team took on Seton Hall at Madison Square Garden in New York on Saturday afternoon. The ninth-ranked Cats lost to the Pirates 84-83 in overtime.

Next up for Kentucky (7-2) is a game against Utah in Rupp Arena next Saturday.

Kentucky’s statistical leaders in Saturday’s game:

Points: PJ Washington, 29

Rebounds: Washington, 13

Assists: Washington and Ashton Hagans, 4

Steals: Reid Travis, 2

Blocks: Washington, 4

Turnovers: Quade Green, Travis and Keldon Johnson, 3

Click here to view a complete statistics report from the game.

LEXINGTON HERALD-LEADER SPORTS PASS

The Herald-Leader is now offering a digital sports-only one-year subscription for $30. You’ll get unlimited access to all Herald-Leader sports stories.

DeepBrain Chain releases Skynet statistics, recaps events throughout November – NEO News Today

DeepBrain Chain releases Skynet statistics, recaps events throughout November - NEO News Today nevin manimala
DeepBrain Chain releases Skynet statistics, recaps events throughout November - NEO News Today nevin manimala

NEO News Today is a community run website that exists to share information on activity within the NEO blockchain ecosystem. We report any information that we feel may be of interest to NEO programmers, investors and enthusiasts. As NEO is an open source platform, this information may include developments, products and events from entities from outside of the NEO Foundation. Forms of coverage may include, but is not limited to, breaking news, accouncements, reviews and interviews, and does not constitute an endorsement of any kind. We report without hype or propaganda. Although we do our best to fact check all information before publishing, readers are encouraged to do their own research before investing in any products, services or token sales mentioned on NEO News Today. No information found on this site should be considered as investment advice. We do not speculate on price. We do not run any form of native advertising, or accept payments in exchange for coverage. We provide free banner space to open source projects built on the NEO platform that we feel are of a high quality, at the discretion of the editorial team. Banners may run for no more than seven days in a row or two weeks of any month. NEONewsToday.com is operated by Ragnarok Digital, LLP. NEO News Today receives funding from City of Zion and NEO Global Development, neither of whom are granted any influence on editorial decisions or policy. If you have any further questions, you can email wakeup@neonewstoday.com

Bears vs. Rams: Preview, prediction, statistics to know for ‘Sunday Night Football’ – CBS Sports

Bears vs. Rams: Preview, prediction, statistics to know for 'Sunday Night Football' - CBS Sports nevin manimala
Bears vs. Rams: Preview, prediction, statistics to know for 'Sunday Night Football' - CBS Sports nevin manimala

This week’s edition of Sunday Night Football pits two NFC heavyweights against each other. 

For one of the two contenders, actually being a contender is not much of a surprise. The Los Angeles Rams were last year’s surprise team, running off an 11-5 record on their way to winning the NFC West in the first year of the Sean McVay era. But after they lost in the first round of the playoffs, the Rams went out and had the most aggressive offseason of any team in the NFL. They traded for Brandin Cooks, Marcus Peters and Aqib Talib. They signed Ndamukong Suh. And so, they were widely expected to be one of the best teams in the NFC, which is exactly what they are.

The Chicago Bears got some dark-horse buzz as a “this year’s Rams” type. The comparison made sense on the surface. The Bears had a second-year quarterback who had been terrible as a rookie but was getting what was perceived as a massive coaching upgrade from an older, out-of-touch coach (John Fox) to a young, offensive whiz kid (Matt Nagy). They now had a quarterback being put in better position to succeed, some new weapons (Allen Robinson, Taylor Gabriel, Trey Burton, Anthony Miller) to work with, and the existing infrastructure of a good defense and an experienced coordinator (Vic Fangio). Still, there was some pushback to the idea that the Bears could be the next Rams because, well, a team doing what last year’s Rams did is just really rare. And yet, here the Bears are, sitting in first place in the NFC North and looking like a legitimate contender. Their offense did not become quite the machine the Rams’ did last season, but it’s a whole lot better than it was last year. And the defense is legit. 

Now, we get to see these two teams do battle on a big stage. This should be fun. 

(Stream Rams-Bears and all of Sunday’s games on fuboTV, try it for free, and stream the CBS games on CBS All Access.)

When the Bears have the ball

The widespread expectation is that the Bears will get Mitchell Trubisky back on the field for this game after the quarterback sat out each of the past two weeks with a shoulder injury. The Chase Daniel Era was a mildly successful one for Chicago, with the Bears going 1-1 against two also-ran teams (Lions, Giants) but maintaining their strong hold on their NFC North lead. Still, it does not make much sense to dig into what happened in those two games, as they will likely hold little significance for Sunday. 

Instead, let’s look at what the Bears did during their first 10 games, with Trubisky under center. Much like the Rams did in 2017, the 2018 Bears under Trubisky took massive offensive jumps across the board. They went from 30th in yards and 29th in points last year to 16th in yards and sixth in points during the first 11 weeks of this season. And they went from 28th in offensive efficiency, per Football Outsiders’ offensive DVOA, to 14th. Again, these are not quite 2017 Rams-level leaps but they are pretty damn close, and enough to take the Bears from the offensive basement to the realm of respectable. And they’ve also shown throughout this season that when they really get rolling, they have an incredibly high ceiling. (The Bears are one of just five teams that have scored 40 or more points multiple times this season.)

The most obvious improvement this season has come from Trubisky. That’s not to say he’s been perfect, as he has still struggled with inaccuracy, turnovers, and bone-headed plays, but last year he was barely playable, and this year he has for the most part been average or better every week. Take a look at the chart below, which shows the jump he has made from Year 1 to Year 2. It seems safe to say that he is simply better at everything. 

Trubisky 2017 2018
Comp 196 210
Att 330 321
Comp % 59.4% 65.4%
Yds 2193 2469
YPA 6.65 7.69
TD 7 20
TD % 2.12% 6.23%
INT 7 9
INT % 2.12% 2.80%
QB Rtg 77.5 97.7
QBR 31.6 74.8
Rush 41 51
Yds 248 363
Yds/Rush 6.05 7.12
Rush TD 2 3

Having Nagy scheme him into position to succeed helps, as does having weapons more capable of making plays on the perimeter and over the middle of the field. Trubisky has been under pressure on 27 percent of his drop backs this season, per Pro Football Focus, which represents a steep drop from last year’s 36 percent rate. His pass-catchers have dropped only seven of 321 throws (2.2 percent) as opposed to the 19 of 330 (5.8 percent) they dropped a year ago. Nagy is having him push the ball farther downfield, as his average depth of throw this season is 9.83 yards (fifth out of 35 qualified passers) compared to just 8.1 yards last season (30th out of 40). 

Sorry to interrupt your reading, but just a quick PSA here. We have a pretty amazing daily NFL podcast you may not be aware of. It’s hosted by Will Brinson and it’s all the things you’re looking for: news, fantasy, picks, really, just football stuff for football people.  Subscribe: via iTunes | via Stitcher | via TuneIn | via Google 

One thing that’s helped immensely is adjusting the usage of the team’s running backs. Last year, Tarik Cohen was on the field for only 389 of the Bears’ 934 offensive plays. That’s a 41.6 percent snap rate. This season, he’s been on the field for 375 of 766 plays, a 49.0 percent rate. Not only that but he has been used more often. Cohen averaged 5.4 rushes and 3.3 catches per game last season, but this year those figures are up to 6.2 and 4.9 per game, respectively. And he’s doing more with his touches, spiking from 5.2 to 7.3 yards per touch. Jordan Howard, conversely, has seen his snap-share decline along with his effectiveness. After averaging 5.2 yards per carry as a rookie and 4.1 per carry last year, he’s all the way down at 3.4 per carry this season. His passing-game role has been heavily reduced, as Cohen is simply a better fit for the kinds of things the Bears want to do offensively. 

And the things they want to do offensively should at least work fairly well against the Rams. L.A. is able to get pressure up front with Aaron Donald and Ndamukong Suh and Michael Brockers and Dante Fowler, but they’ve been vulnerable through the air all season and their run defense has been dreadful for much of the year. Peters’ acquisition came with a ton of hype but he has been one of the NFL’s most-burned cornerbacks this year, allowing a 126.0 passer rating on throws in his direction. That’s like turning every quarterback into Drew Brees, but better. 

The Rams as a whole have struggled to contain No. 1 wideouts (Allen Robinson) and slot men (Anthony Miller), as well as deep throws (Taylor Gabriel) and throws over the middle (Trey Burton). Just about the only things they’ve done well in the passing game are cover short passes and running backs, which makes it seem like Cohen could struggle to make an impact, but then you remember that the Rams’ run defense has been dreadful and, well, that seems somewhat less likely. What the Rams are instead banking on here is Trubisky being rusty come off a nearly three-week break, the cold weather affecting the pass game, and the pressure up front getting the better of Chicago’s offensive line. 

When the Rams have the ball

The Rams, one of the best offensive teams in the NFL, are coming off a muted performance against the Lions, in what may have been their worst offensive game of the year. The Rams poured in 30 points, sure, but they gained just 344 yards, their second-lowest total of the season, and also turned the ball over twice. After reeling off 54 points in the Game of the Year against the Chiefs prior to their bye, last week’s output was a bit of a letdown. 

And if they think the Lions defense was tough last week, well … just wait. The Bears rank third in the NFL in yards allowed per game and fifth in points allowed per game, as well as first (by a significant margin) in defensive DVOA. They rank first in DVOA against both the run and the pass. They generate a ton of pressure with Khalil Mack, Leonard Floyd, and Akiem Hicks. Their corners (Prince Amukamara, Kyle Fuller, Bryce Callahan) are all strong in coverage and their safeties (Eddie Jackson, Adrian Amos) are some of the best playmakers in the league. Their linebackers (Roquan Smith and Danny Trevathan) make plays all over the field. They do not have very many weaknesses. 

The one thing the few quarterbacks who have had success against the Bears this year have in common is that they’ve done so using a heavy mixture of short passes and screen plays. Brock Osweiler went 28 of 44 for 380 yards, three touchdowns, and two picks in Miami’s surprising win over the Bears in Week 6. Of his 28 completions, five were behind the line of scrimmage and another 18 — including all three touchdowns — came on throws within 10 yards of the line of scrimmage. The following week, Tom Brady went 25 of 36 for 277 yards, three touchdowns, and a pick against the Bears. Of his 25 completions, five were behind the line of scrimmage and another 16 were within 10 yards of the line of scrimmage. All three of his touchdowns fit those criteria as well. 

Luckily for the Rams, they excel on short passes and screens. They’ve gained 363 yards on screens this season, per Sports Info Solutions, fifth-most in the NFL. And that’s not just volume. They’ve thrown only 40 screen passes, good for 17th in the league. And on passes within 10 yards of the line of scrimmage, Jared Goff is one of the NFL’s best quarterbacks. He’s completed 128 of 201 such throws, for 1,289 yards, 17 touchdowns, and just three interceptions. That’s a 103.8 passer rating that ranks fourth-best in the NFL. Using running back screens and smoke screens to the outside and jet sweeps may be necessary in this game to keep the Bears’ pass-rushers at bay — especially in the cold weather, which Goff and company aren’t used to. They’ve played just one cold-weather game this season and it was arguably their worst game of the year. 

As in that game, there will be some intriguing passing-game matchups to watch out for. The Bears play sides with their cornerbacks and have not shadowed this year. Amukamara mans the right corner slot while Kyle Fuller plays on the left and Bryce Callahan stays in the slot. That means both Amukamara and Fuller will see plenty of both Brandin Cooks and Josh Reynolds, though the Rams could align one of them on one side of the field more often if there’s a certain matchup they want. Knowing how Sean McVay operates, though, that seems somewhat unlikely to happen. Even though he keeps the same personnel on the field at almost all times, he likes to move them around to create confusion even while showing the same personnel package and post-snap look. On the inside, Robert Woods will likely do battle with Callahan for much of the evening, as he has spent the majority of his time in the slot since Cooper Kupp went down with a torn ACL. 

The Rams love to get their receivers (and tight ends and Todd Gurley) moving on crossers and to flood zones with multiple receivers at different levels of the field, allowing Goff to make simple reads and fire the ball into wide windows. Their offense is as well-designed as any in all of football. They make things as easy as possible for everyone involved and then they all execute everything at an extremely high level. Everything flows from the danger of Todd Gurley and the run game, which is somewhat unusual for a modern NFL team, but works for the Rams because of A) how damn good Gurley is running the football; B) the strength of their offensive line; and C) their proficiency on play-action plays. 

Their run game does not really consist of much more than inside zone and outside zone, but good luck trying to stop either of those plays with all the bells and whistles McVay puts on them to distract from the fact that they mostly just want to run the ball down your throat. Rarely does a play go by without some sort of motion or play-fake, even if it’s just designed to hold one guy on the back side so Gurley can cut back if he wants to. Gurley has incredible feet, balance, vision, and quick-strike ability, and he can score from literally anywhere, at any time. Add in the fact that he is a marvelous blocker and pass-catcher, and you can see why he rarely comes off the field. Just the threat that Goff might hand the ball to Gurley is often enough to terrify opposing defenses, and that’s why the Rams run more play-action than any team in the league, and why Goff is so good at it. 

This Bears defense is as good as it gets. They’re unlikely to get smoked off the field the way the Chiefs defense did when the played the Rams. But they may just not have enough to really shut these guys down. 

Prediction: Rams 24, Bears 20

How One Founder Breaks Free From Statistics and Labels – SFGate

How One Founder Breaks Free From Statistics and Labels - SFGate nevin manimala

If entrepreneurship and skydiving have anything in common, it’s that both require a leap of faith in yourself, a team, training, tools and the unknowns. Dyan Gibbens has taken both of those leaps as the founder and CEO of Trumbull Unmanned and as a veteran of the U.S. Air Force Parachute Team. Gibbens has led Trumbull, a company that uses drones to capture environmental and safety data, to Entrepreneur‘s 2018 100 Brilliant Companies list and many more awards and accolades.

Often invited to the table as a representative of women, Latinas, veterans and engineers, Gibbens also maintains that she’s a role breaker because “statistics define the past, and I want to define the future.”

Gibbens attributes much of her success to finding expert and peer mentors to help her make connections and fill in knowledge gaps. “My advice to entrepreneurs is to engage mentors early on and ask for help. Asking for help isn’t a sign of weakness; asking for help is a sign of strength.”

Check out Alice’s guide to finding your perfect mentor here, and Alice’s resources for veteran entrepreneurs here.

Related: This Unlikely VC Has Invested $4 Million in Underrepresented Founders

Related:
Bridging The Women Employment Gap
How This Entrepreneur Bounced Back After Losing a Partnership, Laying Off Her Team and Dealing with $100 Million at Stake
How One Founder Breaks Free From Statistics and Labels

Copyright 2018 Entrepreneur.com Inc., All rights reserved

This article originally appeared on entrepreneur.com

Titans vs. Jaguars pick, how to watch, stream: Preview, statistics to know for ‘Thursday Night Football’ – CBS Sports

Titans vs. Jaguars pick, how to watch, stream: Preview, statistics to know for 'Thursday Night Football' - CBS Sports nevin manimala
Titans vs. Jaguars pick, how to watch, stream: Preview, statistics to know for 'Thursday Night Football' - CBS Sports nevin manimala

Are you ready for some AFC South football? We hope so. Because that’s what you’re getting on Thursday night. 

The seemingly annual Thursday Night clash between the Titans and Jaguars is here, and it is probably not going to be spectacular, given the recent history of what games between these two teams has looked like. But what this game could be, though, is important. 

The Titans are 6-6 and hanging on the edges of the AFC playoff race. If they manage to get a badly-needed win this week, it could propel them back into the picture — especially when you consider what their upcoming schedule looks like. The Jags are 4-8 and almost surely out of the playoffs, but this is the first of four opportunities for them to spoil the hopes of playoff wannabes down the stretch. 

What should you be looking out for tonight (8:20 p.m., NFL Network)? We’re glad you asked. 

(Stream Thursday’s Titans-Jaguars game and all of Sunday’s games on fuboTV, try it for free, and stream the CBS games on CBS All Access.)

When the Titans have the ball

The Titans have perhaps the NFL’s most inconsistent offense. 

Just since their bye week, the Titans have scored 28 points against the Cowboys and 34 against the Patriots in back-to-back wins, followed it up with 10 points against the Colts and 17 against the Texans in back-to-back losses, and then hung 26 on the Jets in another win last week. They’ve been held to 10 points or fewer three times. They have four games with zero turnovers and four games with multiple turnovers. They’ve had three games with less than 100 rushing yards and three games with 150 or more. 

Marcus Mariota has three games with a passer rating of 119 or better and three games with a passer rating of 62 or worse. Corey Davis had two catches for 34 yards in Week 4, exploded for 9 catches for 161 yards and a touchdown in Week 4, and then combined for 8 catches for 83 yards over the next three games combined. Dion Lewis emerged as the team’s lead back with an average of more than 21 touches a game and 5.4 yards per touch during Weeks 7-10, but has averaged just 11 touches per game and 3.2 yards per touch in three games since. 

There is seemingly no way to tell which particular version of the Titans’ offense we will see in any given game, as their performance has little carryover from one week to the next. Again, this is a team that scored 9 points against the Jags back in Week 3 and then followed it with 26 against the Eagles. They scored 34 against the Patriots and then 10 against the Colts. There is no rhyme or reason about anything with these guys. 

That said, they have pretty consistently had trouble moving the ball against the Jaguars defense since the start of last year … but they’ve won all three games against them anyway, largely because the Jaguars’ offense can’t seem to move the ball against the Titans (or anyone else), either, and has consistently gifted Tennessee short fields to work with. In the first game these two teams played last year, for example, the Titans started five of their 12 drives in Jaguars territory, and those drives accounted for 24 of their 37 points. In the other two games against these Jags, the Titans totaled 24 points — scoring one touchdown and six field goals on 24 drives. 

This year’s version of Jacksonville’s defense is not quite as dominant as last year’s, but we saw just last week how they are still capable of locking down even the best of opposing offenses. When their front four is getting pressure they are extremely tough to beat, and if you can’t control the line of scrimmage in the run game you are going to end up in poor down-and-distance situations, allowing those guys to pin their ears back and come after the cornerback, which allows Jalen Ramsey and A.J. Bouye and company to be even more aggressive in taking away passing lanes on the outside. 

Tennessee’s offensive line, much like the rest of the team, has been inconsistent this season, and there is no telling which version of that unit will show up. If Taylor Lewan, Jack Conklin, and company can keep the pass rush at bay, maybe Mariota can sit in the pocket and wait for one of his guys to spring open. If not, it could be a long night, full of more field goals. 

When the Jaguars have the ball

Honestly, the less said about the Jaguars’ offense, the better. 

The Jags are almost completely dependent on Leonard Fournette to do pretty much everything, but pretty much the only thing Fournette has been any good at this season is touching the ball a lot of times. Fournette cracked the 1,000-yard rushing mark during his rookie year almost entirely due to heavy volume. He averaged 3.9 yards per carry but the Jags had little else in the way of offensive talent so they just kept giving him the ball. He’s been even less efficient this year, averaging just 3.5 yards per carry. 

He’s only lasted a full game three times, having been injured midway through Jacksonville’s Week 1 and Week 4 victories, and during the three games that he’s lasted the whole way, Fournette has taken his 70 carries for just 243 yards. He’s scored four touchdowns on the ground, but they’ve all been force-feeds close to the goal line — two from a yard out, one from two yards out, and one from five yards out. The staunch desire the Jags have to feed him the ball as often as possible also puts them in a conservative offensive shell and leads them to prioritize not losing rather than winning; and that often results in them losing anyway, as it did against the Steelers when they ran Fournette into the center of the line a bunch of times and let Pittsburgh sneak away with a win in a game where they really never should have had a chance.

Handing the ball to Fournette, though, is still likely the best offensive option Jacksonville has. Unsurprisingly to anyone that had seen him play prior to this year, Blake Bortles was once again Blake Bortles this season. It was very obvious to anyone not named Jason Mendoza that the Jaguars were winning games in spite of Bortles’ performance during their run to the AFC title game in 2017, but his offseason wrist surgery necessitated that they bring him back this year because fifth-year options are guaranteed for injury. That didn’t mean the Jaguars had to come into the season with no serious competition for Bortles, though, and doing so undermined any chance they had for offensive success. During the best passing season in NFL history, Bortles actually saw his numbers take an across-the-board drop this season. 

Bortles 2017 2018
Comp % 60.2% 60.4%
YPA 6.7 6.5
TD % 4.0% 3.5%
INT % 2.5% 2.7%
QB Rtg 84.7 81.9
QBR 59.2 46.8
DVOA 0.3% -15.0%

The Jags summarily benched Bortles in favor of Cody Kessler, who is so much not the answer that he was traded to the Jaguars by the Browns for a conditional seventh-round pick. Kessler has completed 72 percent of his passes while in the lineup but he is averaging a pitiful 5.7 yards per attempt and has also taken sacks even more often than Bortles, undermining the offense’s ability to move the ball. 

The Titans defense is vulnerable through the air, especially on the perimeter, but the Jaguars simply do not have the weapons or the quarterback to take advantage of that fact. The Donte Moncrief, Dede Westbrook, Keelan Cole receiving trio is scaring exactly nobody, and even if they could get open downfield against Malcolm Butler or Adoree’ Jackson or Logan Ryan, it’s extremely unlikely that Kessler would be willing or able to push the ball downfield himself and find them. More likely, the Jaguars try to use Fournette to control the clock and keep the Tennessee offense on the sideline. But that effort is likely to prove futile. 

Prediction: Titans 17, Jaguars 10

The confusing analytics of the NBA’s 3-point obsession – NBCSports.com

The confusing analytics of the NBA's 3-point obsession - NBCSports.com nevin manimala
The confusing analytics of the NBA's 3-point obsession - NBCSports.com nevin manimala

Let’s say you’re an NBA coach after a loss. You plop down in your office chair. You’re stewing. You’re sweaty. Your vocal chords feel like someone gently massaged them with a cheese grater.  

An intern hands you the final box score. You look down and can’t wait to find out: What cost you the win? 

What column do you look at first? What column should you look at first?

If you ask Gregg Popovich, it’s the 3-pointers-made column. That’s the only one worth looking at these days in a 3-obsessed league.

Last week, ahead of the San Antonio Spurs’ game against Chicago Bulls, Popovich was asked about the 3-point shot in the NBA, a topic which has long been fertile ground for a good quote from Pop. The 69-year-old has hated the advent of the 3-point shot for years and this was not the first time he’s ranted about the 3-ball.

“These days there’s such an emphasis on the 3 because it’s proven to be analytically correct,” Popovich offered Monday with what appeared to be a sneer. “Now you look at a stat sheet after a game and the first thing you look at is the 3s. If you made 3s and the other team didn’t, you win. You don’t even look at the rebounds or the turnovers or how much transition (defense) was involved. You don’t even care. That’s how much an impact the 3 shot has and it’s evidenced by how everybody plays.”

Pop wasn’t done.

“I hate it, but I always have,” Popovich said even as he’s adjusted over the years. “I’ve hated the 3 for 20 years. That’s why I make a joke all the time (and say) if we’re going to make it a different game, let’s have a four-point play. Because if everybody likes the 3, they’ll really like the 4. People will jump out of their seats if you have a five-point play. It will be great. There’s no basketball anymore, there’s no beauty in it. It’s pretty boring. But it is what it is and you need to work with it.”

(Stephen Curry chimed in on Instagram with a “Nope!”)

This is a classic Pop rant. Funny. Ornery. Critical. But accurate?

He’s exaggerating a bit to make a point, but on the surface, Popovich seems like he’s onto something. The 3-point shot has become more and more popular in today’s NBA. This season, the average NBA team shoots roughly 31 3-point attempts, about two more than last season and a whopping 13 more than the 2009-10 season. In some ways, it has taken over the sport. 

But is the 3-point column really that predictive? If you’re a coach and you want to see what won you the game, should your eyes dart to the 3-point column on the stat sheet first?

Well, let’s actually do the work. I have researched every NBA game played this season through Sunday’s games (all 342!) and looked at which stats aligned with the win column most often. In other words, which battle tended to win the war of a basketball game?

With that in mind, the most important stat on the traditional box score is … field-goal percentage! Basketball purists, rejoice! If you shoot better from the floor than your opponent, you’re probably going to win the game. In fact, teams this season are 246-69 (.781) when they win the FG% column.

OK, maybe that’s a little obvious. It’s a make-or-miss league, just as Jeff Van Gundy loves to say. 

Now, with all the 3s in today’s game, you look at the 3-pointers-made column, right?

Actually, still no. Old-school coaches might want to sit down for this: The team that won the defensive rebound battle is the next-most likely to win, going 225-71 (.760) this season. Don’t believe it? Look at the league’s top defensive rebound teams: Milwaukee, Philly, Portland, L.A. Clippers, — yeah, they’re really good this season! 

That area of the game probably keeps Wizards coach Scott Brooks up at night. Washington is 4-1 when they win the defensive-boards column, but 6-13 when they don’t

All right, 3-pointers have to be the next most pivotal category in the box score, right? Nope. Plain ol’ field goals made is still more important than the 3-ball. The team that reigned supreme in the field goals column went 225-72 (.758), regardless of where they took them.

We can keep going. Turns out that assists (.699), rebounds (.690) and 2-point field goal percentage (.689) are still more tied to the win column than 3-pointers made. We’re seeing that maybe the 3-point shot isn’t the be-all and end-all.

Finally, further down the list, boom, we have 3-pointers made at a .640 win percentage, just barely ahead of 2FG (.628).

Here’s the W-L record of teams that “won” the stat in the box score.

Huh. So, Pop is right in some sense. The “winner” of the 3-point column is more correlated with wins than turnovers, blocks and steals. But not rebounding, especially cleaning up the defensive glass. 

Even though teams are launching the deep ball more than ever, knocking down more 3s than your opponent doesn’t guarantee victory. In fact, you lose 36 percent of the time with that 3-point edge. Even if you win the 3-point percentage column, you still lose 25 percent of your games, hardly a knockout punch.

You don’t have to tell Mike D’Antoni twice about this phenomenon. If Pop’s theory were true, the Rockets would be good this season. Newsflash: They aren’t. If 3s made truly determined wins, then the Rockets would be 18-3-2 this season. They’re 11-12. Earlier this season, they made 10 more 3-pointers than the Clippers and still caught an L.

How about the Bucks? The surprise team of the season, Milwaukee is 16-7 while firing up 3s at a Rockets-like rate. If the 3-point column dictated wins and losses, they’d be 14-8-1. It’s only two more wins, but this shows there’s more to their hot start than just the 3-ball. Their star player and offensive focal point, Giannis Antetokounmpo, is a terrible 3-point shooter, but the Bucks are amazing this season more so because they’re the NBA’s leader in 2FG% and layups — and they dominate the boards. They’re so dang good because they own the paint like a 90s throwback.

* * *

I asked the trusty Basketball-Reference gurus to run some numbers for me, and what they found was interesting. The team that wins the 3FGM column over the last decade has a win percentage of .648 in those games. This season, that win percentage is .640  and has been in decline as 3-point attempts have gone way up.

In fact, the 3-point column is essentially no more predictive than it was a decade ago (.638 in 2008-09). Aside from a blip in 2016-17, teams that won the 3-point column have hovered around .640 pretty consistently since 2004-05, when rule changes allowed more freedom of movement for guards (Hey, Mike D’Antoni!).

So what’s Pop’s rant really about?

It seems to be more about aesthetics, along with a hint of bitterness toward the fact that he’s not using 3s to his advantage (NBC Sports’ Dan Feldman wrote about this). Popovich doesn’t seem to like the drive-and-kick flow of the game, which feels like an issue of taste rather than a contention of competition. Business in the NBA is booming and it’s hard to imagine a global obsession over Steph Curry without the advent of the 3-point line. 

The game isn’t dominated by guys who were born super tall — there’s no Wilt Chamberlain, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and George Mikan in today’s game (not yet, Joel Embiid). Now, the NBA’s best players are smaller guys — Curry, Kemba Walker and Damian Lillard — who have mastered the skill of making baskets from really far away and away from a web of defenders.

There’s more data than ever in sports and the lessons from that data-mining has made its way onto the playing field where scoring has reached heights unseen. NFL coaches are going for it on fourth down more and throwing for more yards than ever. In Major League Baseball, strikeouts and home runs are soaring as part of the true-outcome seachange. If Pop hates 3-pointers, he’d really hate the home run ball. The team that wins the 3-point battle wins 64 percent of the time but according to the Sports Reference folks, the team that wins the homer battle wins a whopping 77 percent of the time. 

In the end, it’s not only good for winning, it’s good for business. As Greg Maddux told Tom Glavine: Chicks dig the long ball.

Haskins’ statistics set records, lead nation – Arkansas Democrat-Gazette

Haskins' statistics set records, lead nation - Arkansas Democrat-Gazette nevin manimala
Haskins' statistics set records, lead nation - Arkansas Democrat-Gazette nevin manimala

COLUMBUS, Ohio — It was subtle, but it was definitely the Heisman Trophy pose that Dwayne Haskins Jr. struck in the end zone after throwing his fifth touchdown pass of the Big Ten championship game last weekend.

It wasn’t quite the hey-look-at-me, Desmond Howard version, but it was an unmistakable Heisman stiff-arm, high-leg stance, even if just for a second.

“I wasn’t planning it,” the Ohio State quarterback said. “I felt it was the right moment for me to do that. I tried to be low key with it, but that didn’t work. It wasn’t a full-on Heisman pose, but it’s a cool picture to have one day.”

Why not? The supremely confident Haskins put up Heisman-worthy numbers, broke records and led his team to a 12-1 mark in a tumultuous season that will end with a trip to the Rose Bowl — two spots outside the College Football Playoff. The other two finalists, quarterbacks Tua Tagovailoa of Alabama and Kyler Murray of Oklahoma, led their teams to playoff berths.

The prize will be awarded Saturday night.

Haskins finished with 4,580 passing yards and 47 touchdowns, both of which led the nation. He broke 11 Big Ten and Ohio State single-season records. He’s tied for 10th all-time for passing touchdowns in a single season in NCAA history. He was Big Ten offensive player of the year and MVP of the conference championship game.

After starting 12 games as a college quarterback, he’ll likely enter the NFL draft, where he could be a first-round pick.

He remade the Ohio State offense in his own image, turning the Buckeyes into a pass-first team after four years of J.T. Barrett running for first downs. Then, late in the season, Haskins showed he could put his head down and run the ball effectively when he had to.

“The quarterback’s dream is to sit back and pick a defense apart,” Haskins said. “I gave coach (Urban) Meyer the confidence to do that. I gave coach (Ryan) Day and coach (Kevin) Wilson an opportunity to call great plays for me and execute them. We just had a whole bunch of fun this year.”

The 21-year-old New Jersey native who played high school ball in Potomac, Md., is one of the best throwers ever to wear an Ohio State uniform. In the last two games of the season, against rival Michigan in the season finale and Northwestern in the conference championship game, Haskins threw for a combined 895 yards and 11 touchdowns.

“That’s one of the best performances in the last two weeks in college football history,” Meyer declared.

Just as important to Meyer — who will retire after his team plays in the Rose Bowl Jan. 1 — is the willingness Haskins showed to tuck the ball and run for tough yards down the stretch, which didn’t come naturally to the pro-style quarterback.

“How do you measure a quarterback? Obviously, wins. But can he get and will he get the first down for you?” said Meyer, who had promised to fly Haskins to New York himself if his quarterback wasn’t chosen as a finalist.

Like Barrett, his predecessor, Haskins showed poise beyond his years whether the offense was clicking or not.

“I think the biggest thing about Dwayne is he never gets too high and he never gets too low,” senior wide receiver Parris Campbell said. “He’s always poised.”

Haskins said he knows Tagovailoa and Murray well from prep quarterback circles and considers them friends.

“Quarterbacks, we all are the alpha males, and we all compete against each other at all the camps, and we all know about one another,” he said. “Kyler coming out of high school was the best quarterback in the country. Tua was like a god. And to be able to be in the same conversation with them makes me feel like I put the work in to be considered the best quarterback in the country. I have much respect for those guys.”

Haskins said he first heard of the Heisman Trophy playing the NCAA Football video game as a kid. He’d always choose to be No. 7, the Ohio State quarterback, and he’d win the bronze statuette every time.

“We’ll see how realistic that is this week,” he said.

Heisman Trophy

presentation

WHEN 7 p.m. Central Saturday

WHERE Marriott Marquis, New York

FINALISTS Dwayne Haskins, QB, Ohio State; Kyler Murray, QB, Oklahoma; Tua Tagovailoa, QB, Alabama

TV ESPN

Sports on 12/06/2018

XRP’s circulating supply data is directly from Ripple’s statistics, says CoinMarketCap – AMBCrypto News

XRP’s circulating supply data is directly from Ripple’s statistics, says CoinMarketCap - AMBCrypto News nevin manimala

The XRP and CoinMarketCap saga has taken a new turn with the cryptocurrency listing website revealing a new development on XRP’s circulating supply. CoinMarketCap had tweeted:

“The circulating supply data we are reporting for XRP is directly from the Ripple network stats. The “distributed” portion of the XRP supply is what is currently in circulation. The “undistributed” portion of XRP is not circulating as indicated by Ripple.”

The latest release by CoinMarketCap comes after research by the company that took into account the general XRP circulating supply displayed on the website. CoinMarketCap has also given out a list of code snippets that show the charts considering the XRPs in the distributed portion of the circulating supply and not the undistributed portions. XRPs are not mined like Bitcoin, so all the XRPs present were brought into existence from the point of creation of the XRP ledger.

The claim comes after multiple reports of XRPs circulating supply being manipulated online. The initial issue was about CoinMarketCap not considering the XRPs in the escrow. Even after the latest update from CoinMarketCap, users were still aghast about the previous accusations and comments. ExArePee, a Twitter user stated:

“We will never forget your manipulation and korean exchange saga…Wild West coming to an end and you will be looked at by regulators for providing inaccurate and misleading information for investors. You have little time to put this right…”

Another Twitter user, XRP Patriot had said:

“You’ll be faZed out like old tech , you are the MySpace of crypto . Make way for the big boys !”

According to CMC, XRP’s current market cap is holding at $14.094 billion with a total circulating supply of $401.657 million. The market cap disparity has also caught the eye of several popular members of the XRP community.

David Schwartz, the Chief Technical Officer of Ripple and someone who has been called Ripple’s trillion dollar man, had also given his two cents on the matter, saying:

“I don’t really have strong feelings either way. It is hard to figure out how to be fair in all these different cases. But it is weird that XRP winds up getting penalized in many ways for its transparency with people assuming the best imaginable about what they do not know.”


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XRP’s circulating supply data is directly from Ripple’s statistics, says CoinMarketCap - AMBCrypto News nevin manimala

Engineering graduate,crypto head and Arsenal fan. Is fascinated by technology and all its marvels. Strictly against pineapple on pizza.