Jordan: The most competitive World Series of all time formula

From Dave Jordan at The Hardball Times on June 6, 2018:

The 2018 NBA playoffs have been a joy for fans of exciting competition. Despite the Finals once again featuring the Warriors and the Cavaliers, many of the playoffs’ moments and performances have been thrilling. Seeing both conference series go the full seven games sent me down the internet rabbit hole to determine which NBA Finals were the most competitive. Since 1947, there have been 19 NBA Finals that reached a Game Seven, good for 26.3 percent of the 71 overall series that have gone the distance. And while there are occasional fan grumblings about the playoffs going the full seven games to maximize the TV rights investment, only four NBA Finals in the last 20 years have reached a seventh game.

This stands in sharp contrast to Major League Baseball, where over 35 percent of all the Fall Classics have finished with a Game Seven, not including the three that went to an eighth game (1912, 1921 and 1922), or the select pre-Modern Era series where there was a tie involved. The NBA playoffs made me wonder: Of those 40 Fall Classics that went the full seven games, which was the most competitive? Asking fans, I’ve received answers such as the “1986 Mets, the Buckner play;” “1960, the Mazeroski Home Run;” “Tigers-Cardinals, ‘68;” even the play at the plate between Yogi and Jackie Robinson in 1955, from some fans of a certain age. The disputes get loud and sometimes testy, as fans defend the highlights of their favorite team in that team’s greatest moments of glory.

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Originally published: June 6, 2018. Last Updated: June 6, 2018.