Optimal Dynamic Clustering Through Relegation and Promotion: How to Design a Competitive Sports League
This paper investigates how the structure of a relegation-promotion system impacts the competitiveness of a sports league. It proposes a rigorous mathematical model of a multi-division hierarchical sports league made up of teams with intrinsic skill levels (ISLs) that change from year to year. Since team skill changes over time, modification in division (or cluster) composition is necessary to optimize competitiveness. This is accomplished through promoting teams with the best records at the end of a season to a higher division and relegating teams with poor records to lower divisions. Such mechanisms are fundamental to the English football league system and the PGA Tour/Nationwide Tour. For reasons discussed in the paper, we use data from the National Basketball Association (in which there is no relegation system) to develop statistical models for year-to-year variability in ISLs and for match outcomes based on the ISLs of the two teams. We then develop a multiple season simulation model to investigate the effect of the number of teams relegated and promoted, the schedule, and the variability of year-to-year ISLs on competitiveness of the divisions. For the NBA data, we find that in a three-division league with ten teams in each division, relegating and promoting three teams at the end of the season results in the most competitive divisions as measured by the long run average within-division ISL standard deviation and the percentage of teams assigned to the correct division. The effect of schedule is minimal.
If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.
Volume (Year): 7 (2011)
Issue (Month): 2 (May)
|Contact details of provider:|| Web page: http://www.degruyter.com|
|Order Information:||Web: http://www.degruyter.com/view/j/jqas|
References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Stefan Szymanski & Tommaso M. Valletti, 2005. "Promotion and Relegation in Sporting Contests," Rivista di Politica Economica, SIPI Spa, vol. 95(3), pages 3-39, May-June.
- Andrew S. Zimbalist, 2002. "Competitive Balance in Sports Leagues: An Introduction," Journal of Sports Economics, The North American Association of Sports Economists, vol. 3(2), pages 111-121, May.
- Roger Noll, 2002. "The Economics of Promotion and Relegation in Sports Leagues: The Cases of English Football," Journal of Sports Economics, The North American Association of Sports Economists, vol. 3(2), pages 169-203, May.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:bpj:jqsprt:v:7:y:2011:i:2:n:7. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Peter Golla)
If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.
If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.
If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.
Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.