NRL Rd 3: Match of the Round with PointsTracker

I’m not sure which is the more exciting event tonight – the European Space Agency unveiling the cosmic microwave background in the best detail yet! … or the Storm v Bulldogs clash at Knucklehead Stadium in Melbourne. My prejudices bias me toward the latter, but goodness it’s a close call!

ChevyOf course, the afterglow from last year’s clinical displays of football by the Storm have carried over into this year. They radiate class, have the Big 4 (include Hoffman, everybody), and even at this early stage seem well ahead of the pack. The Doggies on the other hand haven’t even flown the Barba to Melbourne apparently, though this man was seen at the terminal this afternoon. Resemblance? I think so …

Storm by a few tonight. Let’s call it 16 as the Dr NRL PointsTracker (copyright!) so ably demonstrates below (I’m not willing to go higher):Storm Bulldogs PointsTracker

This adaptation of the stats compares the Storm ‘For & Against’ as it progresses through the match to the Bulldogs’ version of the same. It’s really quite nifty, and highlights the ability of the Storm to keep the roll on. It also highlights the inability of the Bulldogs (at this stage) to post 2nd half points. It doesn’t control for the quality of the opposition, though. That’s far too much work. And anyway, both have played the Cowboys.

So what is this tomfoolery?

Well, the Dr likes a good stat or two. I even make up about 68.4% of them on the spot. The PointsTracker provides an easy visual on when your team scores or concedes points. Use it for the half-time/full-time double if you like!

Now, every good sample requires several observations to avoid randomness (such as Titans 36 – Raiders Zip, which is represented disproportionately in the stats in early rounds). As we’re only into Round 2, clearly this is not possible at this point, but with teams like Melbourne and Manly for instance, you know what you’re going to get.

The reason tonight’s game is not the match of the round is because it ‘seems’ relatively easy to pick.

The Titans v Manly game, however, is harder to pick than a broken nose. Both are tough sides with size and a liberal sprinkling of roughnuts. And the Titans always seem to match up well against the Sea Eagles. Current form suggests something similar tonight. And take a gawk at the PointsTracker below. Looks like a ripper to me:Manly Titans Points Tracker

Because of the small sample size so far, some games look utterly absurd, such as this Tigers v Eels match-up below:Tigers Eels Points Tracker

Who can see the Tigers losing this one by 20+? Not me, but I couldn’t pick a fight in a bikie bar either. But rest assured, the PointsTracker will be quite useful once we move past the first quarter of the season.

And rest assured the oddball stats will keep comin’.

Food for thought.

And remember, as Tom Waterhouse says – bet early, bet hard, bet often. That’s the message I’m getting anyway.

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