Recently, there's been a discussion on yahoo answers regarding logic and the chances of a sports team winning a game:
Here is the last post:
I said that in a sporting event between two teams, players, opponents etc. that the chances of one team winning and one team losing is 50-50. Matt, your example with the pencil does not work because using prior knowledge everyone knows that the pencil will never float correct? so there is not a two possible outcome scenario. In an effort to try and say one team is better then another you have to look at other variables. However, just because one person's stats are better then someone else's does not mean that they have a higher chance of winning, and here's why. Whenever you pull these stats you are using them for only a certain time period, are you not? and in doing so are you not neglecting prior stats to those. If you are then why is it that you are able to use some stats in your analysis whilst others are not good enough for you. Therefore, all stats must be thrown out unless you have the stats for their entire lives. that is the only way to evaluate them on equal grounds because all variables change everyday. Since stats are no longer able to be used in your pregame analysis, let's move on to some more things that someone might use to analyze a game. Practice. Practice is arbitrary and cannot be considered since you can not quantify what practice does to someone. People spend hours upon hours in a gym and nothing happens, while someone can spend just one hour and be infinitely better. So you cannot evaluate who is going to win by their quality of practice and the length of their practice. How about health? How can you say how much a sickness or injury is going to affect someone? you can't. So you cannot evaluate who is going to win by their health. Since you have no basis to evaluate the two on they at the moment of the game are equal, regardless of whether or not one is pro or one is amateur at the beginning of the game their stats for the game are all the same, the score is the same and so on. So each team has a 50-50 chance of winning the game.
Who's right here? I maintain the position that in a sporting event, there is not necessarily a 50-50 chance of winning. Based off many variables, including skill level, health, etc. one team can have a higher chance of winning than another team.