NBA Today: Justin Rao, geeks in crunch time

Justin RaoCourtesy of Justin Rao

A chart showing how much a point leads to a win, based on size of lead and time of game.

At the MIT Sloan Sports Analytics Conference, research scientist Justin Rao showed the chart above as part of a fascinating presentation on the effect of pressure in crunch time. This chart shows that in certain times of the game, namely late in close games, points are way more valuable.

But does that mean that crunch time is more important than any other part of the game?

Listen to the NBA Today podcast with Justin Rao, and he'll explain that the answer is no, not at all.

He'll also talk about that fancy chart, how men and women may be different in crunch time and why every NBA team should steal three or four smart people from Google.