Team Record Under 500 – No Problem in the NBA | Team Sport

This year in the NFL, where even the Wild Card teams sported a .688 winning percentage, the Kansas City Chiefs were left out of the post-season tournament after going 10-6 (.625). Major League Baseball saw the San Diego Padres win their division and earn a 2005 playoff berth with a .506 winning mark, but they were an anomaly. This season all other MLB playoff teams won 90 or more of the 162 games they played. Over the past five years 98% of the baseball teams that have been playoff bound have won 90 (.556) or more games and none have had losing records. The NBA is different.In the 2003-04 NBA Playoffs four of the eight Eastern Conference teams that had the honor of making the second season earned records of .500 or below. In the Atlantic Division, the 8th seed Boston Celtics, one of the most winning franchises in professional sports history, touted a 36-46 (.439) record as they headed into the playoffs. At 39-43 (.476) the New York Knicks weren’t much better. In the Central Division, New Orleans and Milwaukee, 5th and 6th seeds respectively, finished at .500.The next year no sub-500 teams were in the tournament but New Jersey, the 7th seed with a 43-39 (.524) mark, and Philadelphia, the 8th seed compiling a 42-40 (.521) record, were marginal. This year, as we approach the mid-way point of the professional hoop season, it’s clear that there’s a good chance that as many as four sub-500 teams–25% of the playoff mix–will be shooting threes and banging the boards in the post-season.

The Milwaukee Bucks, the current 6th seed, are 19- 18 (.514); the Philadelphia 76ers, which hold the 7th seed, are 18-20 (.474); and the Washington Wizards, the potential 8th seed are 17-20 (.459). Washington will probably have some stiff competition for that final Eastern Conference position from the 16-22 Chicago Bulls, the 15-23 Boston Celtics, and the 14-22 Orlando Magic.Although the Western Conference has traditionally been exempt from this dilemma, this year is different. The current 8th seed, the Utah Jazz, is one game above .500 and there are at least three other teams–Minnesota, Golden State, and New Orleans/Oklahoma City– with more losses than wins that are in contention for that spot.Certainly a system that’s geared towards making the league competitive has its benefits to owners, players, and fans. While teams continue to stay in the mix, this system has the potential to keep hometown fans interested. However, the system leads to inferior teams making it into a post-season where they don’t have a chance to compete.There are a few reasons why the NBA has this problem. However the major reason is, quite simply, money. The NFL has long had a salary cap; the NHL has just instituted one; and MLB has created a half-hearted attempt at one. The theory behind an effective salary cap, such as the type the NFL and NHL have instituted, is that when teams are allowed to only spend a certain amount of money they will be forced to spend it wisely–doing their best to build a competitive team. The other way a salary cap works is that it prohibits one or two teams from paying exorbitant amounts of money to hire all of the stars, thus leveling the playing field. (This is why the MLB salary cap doesn’t really work; it doesn’t do this and is not a true cap. It’s more of a salary visor.)Now this may surprise you– the NBA also has a salary cap. This year it’s set at $49.5 million per team. However the NBA has a “soft” cap, a headband really, which translates into numerous loopholes allowing clubs to still break the bank when it comes to salaries.Because of how it can be manipulated, the soft cap does very little to control spending. This can have some disastrous results for teams and the league. Some teams capture that one star player with a huge multi-year deal but then, because of their own budget limits, can’t afford to support him with role-players. And if that primary guy suffers a season ending injury, the entire team’s season is over.

Others with the deepest pockets find their way around the cap and scoop up two or three hallmark names, while teams with small bankrolls don’t have the power to attract the best talent. Then there are the organizations that spend money on young talent and that talent just doesn’t pan out. If a player has a big contract and he’s not performing, he’s impossible to trade, and he still has to be paid.The fact is a salary cap is intended to negate exactly what is happening in the NBA; a soft cap is designed to simply get around the basic provisions and safeguards a salary cap offers.The final result is an imbalance of power, which means you may have 16 playoff positions but you really only have 12 playoff teams. The last three or four slots are filled by non-competitive teams just because the spaces are there.This year if the Celtics or the Sixers or the Jazz or any of the other clubs hovering around .500 make the post-season will anyone consider them worthy of being potential NBA champions? There’s one of two possible solutions for the NBA–a real salary cap or going to a 12-team playoff scenario.

How to Start Your Own Paintball Team | Team Sport

If things like “Lets start a paintball team” or “We should start a paintball team” are starting to be said within your paintballing buddies don’t be so quick to brush it aside as some fanciful dream or a “pie in the sky” idea. Believe it or not it is actually a lot more simple and achievable than you probably think.First stepsGet together with some friends or a friend of a friend. Obviously, since this is a team sport you will be needing more than just yourself. Get together around five to fifteen fellow paintballers, someone who you know and can work well together.Once you have your chosen few, your chosen “happy few” or in this case several to a dozen get together and talk. Communication is a huge part of this sport whether on the field or off so make sure you have an open line of communication to discuss ideas and to organize yourselves to make a plan. Make sure that you are all on the same playing page and share some common goals and expectation.

Things that you would need to do at this stage is:1. Play paintball together! you want to have fun. That is after all the reason you want to make a paintball team, right?2. Discuss and decide on your captain. The captain of your new budding team should be someone who is well organised and has the qualities of a good leader. It doesn’t necessarily need to be the best player. Just someone who everyone can trust to lead and oraganize your road to glory. Here is also when you can pick cool name for yourselves. I’m thinking… The Painting Ostriches. Oh yeah, that’s inspired!3. Find your home court/ field. This should be near your local area where you and your newly develop teammates reside. Talk with the owner and ask him if he would like his field to become your team’s home field where you can use for practice, etc. In exchange you can offer to help with various things on his field, cleaning up, helping with refereeing when needed and the like.4. Next you want to be able to find sponsorship. To get sponsorship you will need to communicate what you would like from your potential sponsors and also what you can do for them. For example, somethings that you may want from your sponsor is: equipment/ supplies, (Markers, paint balls etc) discounts or even funds. What you can do for them is: Advertise/branding, patronage etc. Remember to be realistic and don’t expect too much – at least for now.5. Once you have your sponsor, home field, captain and your very own cool team name, set a schedule every week where your team can practice and play as much as possible. Work on strategies and tactics, practice working together as a team and overall improve your skills. It would be great if you can film this practice matches so that you can discuss afterwards what you need to improve on and what strategies to develop.

6. Here is when you can start entering to tournaments! Remember to represent you sponsors well by conducting yourselves in a professional manner and being a good sample of sportsmanship which will reflect well to your sponsors – which makes them happy.As you can see it isn’t so hard to make your very own paintball team. Having your own paintball team can add some great fun and excitement to the way you play the sport. Paintball is really such a team sport and when you have an actual team it really adds an extra spice to the way you play.And most of all you get to play under a very cool name – The Painting Ostrichs!