Stole this from an MSN site...kinda funny & kinda true.....
Mark Twain once said, â€œThere are three kinds of lies: Lies, damn lies and statistics.â€ Even when statistics donâ€™t lie, they can be very deceiving.
Many sports fans put stock in stats that can be trivial, bordering on meaningless. Think twice before you use some of these stats as measuring sticks for athletes.
The second assist in hockey â€“ Basketball and hockey both track assists, but only hockey gives credit to the player who passed to the player who set up the score. Should the second assist be worth as much as the first assist, considering that it often has very little to do with the end result? Think how different the scoring race would be if the second assist only earned a half-point.
Pitchersâ€™ win-loss record in baseball â€“ In 2006, Randy Johnson had a win-loss record of 17-11 for the New York Yankees while C.C. Sabathia finished with a 12-11 record for the Cleveland Indians. Who had the better season? It looks like Johnson was more effective until you take into account that Sabathiaâ€™s Earned Run Average was 3.22 compared to Johnsonâ€™s ERA of 5.00.
If it wasnâ€™t for the run support he got pitching in front of the Yankeesâ€™ high-powered offence, The Big Unit would have been a big loser. Wins are even more meaningless for relief pitchers, who can retire one batter and earn a win when their offence subsequently scores the winning run.
Field goal percentage in basketball â€“ This stat is supposed to track scoring efficiency, but it doesn't distinguish between two-point and three-point field goals and it doesn't account for free throw shooting. Shaquille O'Neal has led the NBA in this stat in nine of his 14 seasons, but he's only led the league in points per game twice â€“ and it's certainly not because heâ€™s a reluctant shooter. If youâ€™ve witnessed his painfully awkward attempts at the charity stripe, you should know the limitations of this measurement.
Quarterback rating in football â€“ The calculations required for this stat are so convoluted that it would require an entirely separate column to properly explain. In a nutshell, itâ€™s an arbitrary measurement of quarterback effectiveness determined by a weighted calculation including completion percentage, passing yardage, touchdowns and interceptions. Find me a football fan that knows how to calculate this rating and Iâ€™ll show you somebody who needs an intervention.
As long as weâ€™re coming up with these kinds of pointless stats, Iâ€™d like to propose a â€œhusband ratingâ€ that will help women determine the marriage-worthiness of potential mates. It would be determined by a combination of height, body fat percentage, thickness of hair, bench press maximum and the average number of times he will buy flowers per year. Iâ€™m thinking of throwing in measurements for taking out the garbage and offering back rubs, but itâ€™s a work in progress.
Donâ€™t laugh â€“ this stat would be a lot more practical than the other ones Iâ€™ve mentioned.
By Scott Carefoot