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<smallfont><b><a href=CurlingZone > Chat Forums > General Curling Chat > Rock Talk > Idea to eliminate extra ends: award win to the team that throws first rock

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01-06-22 01:16AM
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curlingclips
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Here's a 2018 article I found that gives winning percentage due to LSFE.

https://nationalpost.com/sports/oly...hots-in-curling

quote:
Koe’s team is 25-2 this season when it starts with the hammer. That means they won 92 per cent of the time when starting with last rock. Sweden’s Niklas Edin is 40-5 when starting with the hammer, a winning percentage of .888.

The numbers provided by the CurlingZone website aren’t as outrageous for all curling teams, but 61 per cent of teams in the men’s game win when they start with the hammer and the numbers is 59.2 per cent in the women’s game. That’s mighty significant.


This is partly what inspired me to propose that we give LSFE a 0.5 point handicap, so that the winning percentage may be lowered and closer to 50%.

In chess, where I was inspired partly by Armageddon, White's winning percentage is about 52%-56%.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/First...antage_in_chess

Last edited by curlingclips on 01-06-22 at 01:18AM

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01-06-22 01:19AM
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01-06-22 02:32AM
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quote:
Originally posted by biterbar
quit taking stones out of our hands

Nothing that is being discussed on this thread will ever trickle down to most actual curlers. Even if WCF went ahead and change the rules of the game as they proposed, it only applies to games that they sanction, and probably will not trickle down to Canada/provincial/league play, where the majority of curlers are.

----------------------------------

The feedback that I'm looking for is more of the analytical kind. For example, here's one observation I've made:

Giving LSFE a 0.5 point handicap has to be done for an entire event from start to finish. You can't apply it partially only for round robin games, for example, because it would create a disharmonious strategy within one event, which is probably not a good idea.

Here's an example. Say 2 teams playing against each other, and these teams can force without hammer with 100% success rate guaranteed. Then, if we have extra ends, the team with LSFE wins 100% of the time after 11 ends. If we have 0.5 point LSFE handicap instead, then the team with LSFE loses 100% of the time after 10 ends.

It doesn't make sense for two teams playing against each other in the exact same way to result in two opposite outcomes depending on which phase of the event the game is played in (round robin vs playoff). In other words, this proposal has to be applied wholesale all-or-nothing throughout an entire event.

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01-06-22 08:40AM
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RTainted statistic?

The stat says LSFE wins most often. I have a few comments this stat.

1. LSFE is not just given as a result of the DSC. It is also given, in semis and finals, to the team with the best record in the round robin (when they clearly have the best record). That means in the case of these games the stat does not so much say LSFE usually wins. It says the team with best record mostly wins. Which is not that shocking.

Even for regular LSFE the stat would be more reliable if LSFE was randomly assigned. As it was with the toss of a coin. In fact it is a reward for a skill. The best teams probably practice that skill more and better than the other teams . So again the stat says not that LSFE wins but that the team that is better at making two perfect draws at the beginning of the game mostly wins.

In some countries national championships are played as a double round robin with each team playing each other with and without the hammer in the first end. I would be interested to see the stats from those competitions if there is enough data to rely on. It might not mean that I will change my mind but it would give me a better level of trust in the stat.

2. The WCF changes are focussed on making the game better for tv and, sometimes the fans, more than necessarily making the game more equal. I do not necessarily disagree with that. Three, four and five rock rules have made the game more interesting to watch. But giving essentially a reward for failing at something (like the DSW) goes against my sense of fairness. Be like the best teams. Take note of the stat if you will but make sure it works to your advantage by becoming more proficient at it. The five rock rule doesn't reward failure it just means that you have to develop a different strategy and practice different shots.

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01-06-22 09:13AM
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Re: RTainted statistic?

quote:
Originally posted by Curlwalker
In fact it is a reward for a skill.

I mentioned exactly this in my original proposal. I agree with you that the "better" team starts with LSFE, so of course their winning percentage is >50%.

So I accept that claim, and the LSFE handicap proposal still makes sense, in my opinion.

"OK, so you're the better team, and you have LSFE advantage on top of that... so prove it! Score more points than your opposition in 10 ends, or you lose the game!"

LSFE is often described as a "control" mechanism, so if you are the better team, and you are given control at the start of the game on top of that, I don't see why it's outrageous that we demand that you must score more points to win.

Conversely, for the team that throws first rock of the game, if this is supposed to be the lesser team, and they were deprived of control at the start of the game on top of that, I don't see why it's outrageous to award them the win if they can keep up on the scoreboard after 10 ends.

Last edited by curlingclips on 01-06-22 at 09:23AM

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01-06-22 09:23AM
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Tainted Stat

I have a feeling that the 1/2 point will prove to be an advantage. If that proves to be so the team that wins DSW will take it instead and still start with an advantage.

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01-06-22 09:36AM
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Re: Tainted Stat

quote:
Originally posted by Curlwalker
I have a feeling that the 1/2 point will prove to be an advantage. If that proves to be so the team that wins DSW will take it instead and still start with an advantage.

Yes! I acknowledged this possibility in my original proposal too!

Personally I think that's intriguing. So the better team grabs the freebie 0.5 point instead, but it must give up LSFE to the lesser team in return. My feeling is that some lesser team would be okay with this transaction.

Keep in mind that whoever scores more points wins, regardless of 0.5 point handicap. Extra ends rarely happens when one team is clearly better than the other. In most cases, the lesser team will still get beaten decisively in the scoreboard in 10 ends or less, but now they may start with LSFE as a gift, which I'm sure is something that they'd rather have than not!

If, on the other hand, the two teams are more or less equal in skill, then the 0.5 point handicap could end up being decisive! However, I don't think that's such a bad thing, because it makes the decision of whether to accept or decline LSFE very intriguing!

Brad Jacobs vs Brad Gushue is more or less 50-50 against each other. Can you imagine if, say #1 seed Gushue at the Canadian trials final decides to grab the 0.5 freebie point instead and gives LSFE to #2 seed Jacobs? Wouldn't that make you more interested in watching the game to see what happens?

Last edited by curlingclips on 01-06-22 at 09:56AM

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01-06-22 09:59AM
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Small change

This will only unnecessarily affect a limited number of games. I again do not know the stats for this but this only makes a difference if the team with LSFE has last rock in the extra end. If not then the team without LSFE was going to win 85% of the time anyway. So do the stats support the idea that in extra end games the LSFE team is more likely to win because they are more likely to have last rock? If not then this change will not in any way change the LSFE winning percentages.

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01-06-22 10:13AM
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Re: Small change

quote:
Originally posted by Curlwalker
This will only unnecessarily affect a limited number of games.

You are absolutely asking all the right questions! Unfortunately I don't have the detailed stats to give you an answer on that aspect, but here's one aspect where it matters 100% of the time: extra end games are eliminated!

It may or may not statistically change who wins the game, but the 0.5 point handicap achieves the goal of eliminating extra ends, which is something that WCF has stated to be a goal that they're interested in pursuing.

In other words, changing LSFE winning percentage is actually NOT the primary goal! If it turns out that introducing 0.5 point LSFE handicap does NOT statistically change who wins and who loses in any significant way, then that's all the better!!! That means we managed to cut out extra ends without affecting the integrity of the game!

I can tell you, though, that some historical games would have been affected by this rule. 2019 Scotties final, for example, one of the greatest comeback ever where Carey stole 10th and 11th, would've been won by Homan, who threw first rock of the game. Carey would've had to steal 2 points in 10th if she wanted to win with the LSFE handicap rule... which may or may not statistically be equal to stealing back to back 10th and 11th anyway.

On the other hand, 2020 Scotties final, where Einarson gave up a steal of 2 in 10th but had a second chance to win it in 11th, would've also been won by Homan, who threw first rock of the game.

Similarly, 2021 Canadian Trials final, Fleury would've had to steal the 10th to win under LSFE handicap, because forcing Jones to 1 would've given the win to Jones, who threw first rock of the game. As it turned out, Jones stole the 11th and won anyway, but it would've played out very differently under this proposal.

Anyway, if you can point me to a good database of games where I can easily make this kind of query, I'll find out more and return with some numbers. As it is right now, CurlingZone is not very amenable to these kinds of investigations, as far as I know.

Last edited by curlingclips on 01-06-22 at 10:45AM

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01-06-22 10:29AM
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I'll give it more thought

The WCF emphasis is on completing games in a predictable time frame I think. Eliminating extra ends is the most obvious solution but may not be the best. Is this obsession with time also only a European emphasis given TSN and Sportsnet having multiple channels that they can accommodate extra ends on?

Tie games are the bane of every sport it seems. Soccer has tried so many ways to settle this (although with their level of populatarity having tv stay on for the extra time doesn't seem to be an issue).

If the time for extra ends wasn't an issue maybe you could just flip a coin after the tie to determine who gets last rock in the extra or, like tennis play until someone gets a 2 point lead.

i would always prefer a skill of some kind to determine a winner so I am not convinced by the 1/2 point proposal but thank you for providing me something to think about.

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01-06-22 10:55AM
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Re: I'll give it more thought

quote:
Originally posted by Curlwalker
i would always prefer a skill of some kind to determine a winner

The elegance of this proposal is that the LSFE is already a part of the game, already prominently displayed on the scoreboard. It's just that currently, once the game begins, you can basically ignore LSFE, because it has no direct impact on anything.

Introducing the 0.5 point handicap to LSFE means that it now plays out for the rest of the game. You must re-strategize when to blank, when to attack, when to steal, when to force, and include it as a crucial part of scoreboard management.

In that regards, I consider skill to remain the determining factor of who wins the game. We're not actually ignoring LSFE until the game is over, and then look up on the scoreboard to see where the asterisk is if the score is tied after 10 ends. In reality, we would be playing the entire game with full awareness of who had LSFE, and strategize accordingly.

In short, this is not something that is added on at the end of the game to decide who wins. This is something that will permeate throughout the whole game itself.

Hence it's actually not valid statistics to go back and retroactively apply this LSFE handicap to historical games. I'm still going to do it anyway, for curiosity sake, if I can get my hands on accessible data.

Last edited by curlingclips on 01-06-22 at 11:56AM

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01-06-22 02:02PM
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No, no, no and no.

LSFE is based on performance. The team that performs better gets last rock. End of that story.
Then there is another stage where the team that performs better by scoring more points is awarded the win.
There is absolutely no need to complicate the matter by saying oh, since you outperformed the other team in LSFE you must now outperform them in 10 ends, not 11.

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01-06-22 02:20PM
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quote:
Originally posted by hogged again
No, no, no and no.

LSFE is based on performance. The team that performs better gets last rock. End of that story.
Then there is another stage where the team that performs better by scoring more points is awarded the win.
There is absolutely no need to complicate the matter by saying oh, since you outperformed the other team in LSFE you must now outperform them in 10 ends, not 11.



Exactly. And why keep beating a dead horse, this will never happen.

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01-13-22 11:39PM
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On the list of things that could be done to improve the watchability of curling, eliminating the extra end has to be one of the worst that I've heard of. What's more interesting than sudden death overtime?

If reducing play time is a concern, then why not just let round robin games end in a tie? It's a valid way to end a sporting competition when a winner cannot be determined in regular time, and it doesn't require any goofy gimmicks.

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01-14-22 12:11AM
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For the love of God, just give it up. Play to win. The end. FFS what’s wrong with you people. Never curled a day in your life. Stfu. Cm.

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01-14-22 08:27AM
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quote:
Originally posted by IN-OFF-FOR-2
For the love of God, just give it up. Play to win. The end. FFS what’s wrong with you people. Never curled a day in your life. Stfu. Cm.


What is with all these "you don't curl shut up posts"? So what if some don't curl? Most people don't play the sports they watch it doesn't mean they can't be fans.

tldr: don't drink and post

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01-14-22 10:29AM
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quote:
Originally posted by hailstone
What's more interesting than sudden death overtime?

WCF explained their rationale: extra ends are "increasingly predictable" (their words, not mine) because they're won by team with hammer 80% of the time.

In an alternate universe where curlers got even better and they win extra ends 99% of the time with hammer, do you still think they're interesting? Or do you at least see why some people think that they are not?

Again, I will repeat that personally I have no problem with extra ends. I'm a new fan, pretty much everything about curling is interesting to me. I also have a special love for extra ends, because when I had no idea about strategy/scoreboard management at the beginning, extra ends were a way for me to start learning, because strategy is simple precisely due of its sudden death nature (there is no scoreboard management any more, the only thing that matters is happening on the ice).

One of my favorite end of curling is an extra end. It's when Edin stole his first grand slam win from Jacobs, who hadn't lost an extra end with hammer in 3 years.

Edin seemingly missed a bunch of shots early on, but was able to eventually coax Jacobs into switching gears later. Interviews afterward suggest that Edin engineered the whole thing from the start. It's a beautiful end to watch unfold.

If you recall, not too long ago I tried to list all of the extra ends that Jennifer Jones stole in her career.

I love extra ends.

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01-14-22 11:01AM
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How often has Koe or Edin lost to someone like Van Dorp? I bet it's closer to 1% than 20%. And yet WC wouldn't suggest we just cancel those games and award it to Koe/Edin.

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01-14-22 11:34AM
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quote:
Originally posted by oliviertoisel
How often has Koe or Edin lost to someone like Van Dorp?

Let's say that hypothetically curling came up with a statistically solid point handicap system, and when Edin plays against Van Dorp, Van Dorp gets +3 points advantage at the start of the game, to make things more "interesting".

Do you have a problem with that? Do you think that ruins the sport?

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01-14-22 01:28PM
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quote:
Originally posted by curlingclips

Let's say that hypothetically curling came up with a statistically solid point handicap system, and when Edin plays against Van Dorp, Van Dorp gets +3 points advantage at the start of the game, to make things more "interesting".

Do you have a problem with that? Do you think that ruins the sport?




I personally think that it doesn't necessarily ruin the game, but it does ruin the competition. In other words, determining who is the best team, at least on that day.

The main sports that I can think of that use a handicap system are golf and horse racing, In horse racing, the handicaps is used in some races to make the race more even, by putting extra weight on the saddle of better horses, I'm not sure if this is mostly due to horse racing being a betting sport. Races like those in the Triple Crown don't use a handicap system.

In golf, handicaps are most often used as a casual or club level games, in order to make the game more even between golfers of different skill levels, again now mostly for betting. Pro golfers do have handicaps as well, but they are never used in tournaments or competitive amateur tournaments, like the US Amateur.

I can't think of any other sport that uses any type of handicap system at any level, certainly not at the higher World Championship or Olympic level. Even at developmental levels, you will not see something like that, as it not a way to determine who is the best, or who ran the fastest, etc.

Now, from an entertainment standpoint, some such system might be interesting in a exhibition, made for TV, Skins game type format. How that would work exactly, I don't know. I would watch it, because I watch all the curling I can. But if such a system was implemented in competitive games, I would definitely be opposed.

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01-14-22 01:57PM
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quote:
Originally posted by MKL
betting sport


There are other sports with handicap systems which, as far as I know (which is not much, since I neither bet nor do I care about most sports in general), are not betting sports.

Here's Archery GB explaining the handicap system in archery.

https://www.archerygb.org/shoot-com...tion-handicaps/
"The handicap system is a way of adjusting scores to a baseline so that archers with different levels of experience can compete on an equal footing"

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01-14-22 02:13PM
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quote:
Originally posted by curlingclips


There are other sports with handicap systems which, as far as I know (which is not much, since I neither bet nor do I care about most sports in general), are not betting sports.

Here's Archery GB explaining the handicap system in archery.

https://www.archerygb.org/shoot-com...tion-handicaps/
"The handicap system is a way of adjusting scores to a baseline so that archers with different levels of experience can compete on an equal footing"





I'm curious as to in what competitions the handicap system is used in archery. I don't know a great deal about archery, but I doubt that it is used at the Olympics, or at the World or National championships. Do you know?

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01-14-22 02:22PM
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quote:
Originally posted by MKL
I don't know a great deal about archery

Neither do I, to be honest.

I did find out this much:

* NFAA (National Field Archery Association) exists in USA since 1939, consisting of 49 chartered state organizations and ~1,000 affiliated clubs

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Natio...ery_Association

* NFAA's Constitution enforces the handicap for all of its tournaments

https://www.nfaausa.com/wp-content/...NSTITUTION-.pdf
"Article IV Tournaments - Use of Handicaps: All handicaps as provided under “Handicapping” shall be recognized."

They also explained why they have a handicap system in the first place:

"Handicapping is the great equalizer among sportsmen of differing abilities. The National Field Archery Association presents this archery handicap system in the conviction that, when faithfully operated, it results in equitable handicaps no matter where archers live and play."

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01-14-22 02:36PM
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quote:
Originally posted by curlingclips

Neither do I, to be honest.

I did find out this much:

* NFAA (National Field Archery Association) exists in USA since 1939, consisting of 49 chartered state organizations and ~1,000 affiliated clubs

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Natio...ery_Association

* NFAA's Constitution enforces the handicap for all of its tournaments

https://www.nfaausa.com/wp-content/...NSTITUTION-.pdf
"Article IV Tournaments - Use of Handicaps: All handicaps as provided under “Handicapping” shall be recognized."

They also explained why they have a handicap system in the first place:

"Handicapping is the great equalizer among sportsmen of differing abilities. The National Field Archery Association presents this archery handicap system in the conviction that, when faithfully operated, it results in equitable handicaps no matter where archers live and play."



That is a valid example, but I think we're missing the main point of my original reply. I was not trying to make a point about handicaps and betting on a sport, but the fact that a handicap system is not used in any sport that I could think of, at a World Championship or Olympic level, or for that matter in any major professional sport. If you can think of any, please let us know.

I think that the implementation of a handicaps system in curling, a sport with continuing Olympic aspirations, would be detrimental to its continuation as such. Or some such thing, I dunno, IMHO.

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01-14-22 02:36PM
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It's really impossible to have a discussion when one side is just inserting non sequiturs and stuff they're randomly googling in the moment to try and back it up.

The discussion is about killing extra ends. Curlingclips claimed a key reason to kil extra ends is predictability. I pointed out some entire games are more predictable than the typical extra end but no one suggests skipping those games or precluding those teams from competing. Why? There would be advantages to having fewer games with bad teams: less physical strain on the athletes, fewer boring blowout games on TV. But of course WC could never get away with that because it would offend member orgs and go against the spirit of competitiveness. Taking the conversation off into the realm of "well let's figure out how to change the competitive center of the sport" is absurd. That is a completely different discussion! To then try and wiki some sports that use handicaps is just downright silly.

I am a little surprised at curlingclips' resistance here. Is it denied that WC is doing these rule changes, including booting extra ends, to make the games shorter and more predictable? Am I imagining it or hasn't that been explicitly stated?

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