A strategy question for sports fans?

Let's say you had a knock down hellacious game with a tough team. It's the end of the game with three seconds left, time for one last play. Your team is down by 2 (in basketball) or 3 (in football) and you have the ball. In basketball do you go for a 2 point shot and go to overtime or do you go for 3 and the win? In football you are at the 2 yard line, down by 3, do you go for it to try and win or kick a field goal and take it to overtime. Your team is home in both situations.

  • Go for the win in both situations
    50% (5)36% (8)41% (13)Vote
  • Try to get to overtime in both situations
    10% (1)45% (10)34% (11)Vote
  • Go for the win in one but not the other
    10% (1)5% (1)6% (2)Vote
  • Other
    30% (3)14% (3)19% (6)Vote
And you are? I'm a GirlI'm a Guy

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Most Helpful Guy

  • That actually depends on a huge range of different factors.

    You wouldn't want to risk going into overtime against a team that has a good kicker and generally solid defense, and has consistently been able to drive into field goal range, even if they've failed to score touchdowns - you'd try to the win it there and then.

    On the other hand, if they have a great goalline defense, but have struggled to move the ball and have a weak-legged kicker, have blown a big lead, and are perhaps leading thanks to a high redzone efficiency or some slightly lucky big plays (maybe a pick-six or something) - that's when you take the 3pts and look to win it in OT.

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What Girls Said 1

  • Depends how much energy is left. You could also get fouled and get two free shots then go for either lol.

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What Guys Said 8

  • I voted for go for the tie but...

    it does depend on how the game has been going especially more recently. like has your defense gotten better, so that you may trust them in overtime. OR have they been getting worked over so that you don't trust them to go against the offense again

    has the offense had success moving the ball or shooting so that you feel more confident about their ability to make the game winner

    and finally what you're playing for. perhaps if it's late in the season and you are close to the playoffs OR if it is the playoffs you play for the tie, as the cost of missing the game winner has larger consequence than say it's late in the season and your team is completely out of playoff contention... then I'd go for the win

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    • thanks for the sports question. I also like discussing strategy and analysis in terms of sports

    • you're welcome, so do i. i was watching the michigan-minnesota college fb game a couple of days ago and this exact scenario came up. minnesota went for it and failed, had to take an l at home. i always agreed with the idea that at home you go for overtime and on the road you go for the win. however there can be varying factors involved too.

    • that finish was insane

  • in basketball, always go for the 2 unless you have a dude named steph curry or curry-like player in your pocket. also, depends on the situation. like if you're overmatched like georgia state was against baylor, you go for 3.

    in football, also depends, but go for the tie pretty much always. if it's a defensive struggle, go for the tie because your defense can hold up and try and get a turnover out of it. if it's an offensive game and you just marched down the field in like 45 seconds, go for the win, especially if you have a run game or a tall receiver. if there's a defensive penalty, you get another play (games can't end on defensive penalties).

    it also depends on college vs nfl rules.

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  • I would take the most open shot, least predictable shot, or see where my best player is hottest that day in basketball.

    Don't understand football enough to say.

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  • Unless the game flow says otherwise, I go for the tie. 8-)

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  • Cheat and break someone's leg.

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  • I don't understand your American sports but i would always "play the percentages."

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  • Football:
    take the field goal. Fieldgoal is not quite a sure thing but very high probability, and lets say it's 50/50 in overtime. The odds of scoring on one play from the 2 are significantly worse then that. Unless you've seen the other team looking on sloppy at defending vs. possible fake, take the 3 and play overtime.

    Basketball: not too different from any other play. You have a wide open 3, you take it, you get the ball down low and can take a high % shot, you take it. Work the D, get an opening, avoid contested midranger.

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  • You wanna go for the highest chance of success.

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