Category Archives: Strategy

This is the third and final part of my series of whether to foul when the game is tied and the shot clock is off. If you missed part 1 and part 2, don’t worry, you’re joining us just in time. The payoff was this guide to when the strategy of fouling is justified. Maximum […]

In Part 1, I went over some of the relevant win probabilities to consider for the strategy of fouling when the game is tied and the shot clock is off. If one assumes that any missed free throw is rebounded by the defense, then the strategy of fouling would be recommended in the majority of […]

Late in the 1983 national championship game, heavily-favored Houston held the ball with a little over a minute remaining in a tie game. In the pre-shot clock era, Houston had the opportunity to hold for the last shot. N.C. State head coach Jim Valvano implemented what would be considered a controversial strategy today, ordering Dereck […]

San Diego State enters Thursday’s game with Arizona with what seems to be a remarkable streak. They’ve won 119 consecutive games when they have led with five minutes to go. The last time they blew a lead with five minutes left was on January 9, 2010. The Aztecs were up 14 with the ball with […]

Normally in basketball, one needs to spend a possession on defense to earn the right to get the basketball, just as at the grocery store, you need to spend $4.99 to earn the right to consume a frozen pizza. When the opportunity presents itself to purchase two frozen pizzas for that same price, a rational […]

I’m a little late to the party on discussing the fouling-up-3 strategy, but for a while I’ve been wanting to interrogate play-by-play data to get a handle on the approach. Not that it matters, but I’ve believed it usually makes sense to foul in these situations and it’s been heartening to see that analysts across […]