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Comments on ``Measuring Parity''


  • Rodney Fort

    (Washington State University)


From historical odds Cain and Haddock assign the probability of a tie at 25% and offer functional forms for the standard deviation of a league with equal chances of a win for each team under different point assignment schemes. They then track the ratio of actual to these idealized standard deviations and argue against using an approximation that assigns half a win to both teams in a tie game or match. Their article contains some confusing use of nomenclature and there are some important lapses in scholarship. But perhaps more important, they ignore the fact (after acknowledging it) that if one uses percentages rather than absolute points, their measures of competitive balance are invariant to the point system actually used. Although their point is well-taken for competitive balance questions where absolute points might prove informative, for other competitive balance questions their point is not.

Suggested Citation

  • Rodney Fort, 2007. "Comments on ``Measuring Parity''," Journal of Sports Economics, , vol. 8(6), pages 642-651, December.
  • Handle: RePEc:sae:jospec:v:8:y:2007:i:6:p:642-651

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    Cited by:

    1. Dorian Owen, 2014. "Measurement of competitive balance and uncertainty of outcome," Chapters, in: John Goddard & Peter Sloane (ed.), Handbook on the Economics of Professional Football, chapter 3, pages 41-59, Edward Elgar Publishing.
    2. Trandel Gregory A & Maxcy Joel G, 2011. "Adjusting Winning-Percentage Standard Deviations and a Measure of Competitive Balance for Home Advantage," Journal of Quantitative Analysis in Sports, De Gruyter, vol. 7(1), pages 1-17, January.
    3. Franziska Prockl & Dirk Semmelroth, 2018. "Perception Versus Reality - Competitive Balance In Major League Soccer From 1996 – 2016," Working Papers Dissertations 36, Paderborn University, Faculty of Business Administration and Economics.


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