ItDoesntMatter

National Dashball League: A Fictional Sport, A Fictional Future - 2023 Semifinals

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I wanted to simplify the Tooths' look, and I liked the way they looked without the designs on the back.

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Texas Redbacks vs Philadelphia Row
In a clash between the league’s top offense and its top defense, many expected the Redbacks’ playoff experience to put them over the top. After all, Texas was playing in their tenth postseason series while Philly was playing in just their third as a team. When Game 1 started, though, it was clear the Row weren’t going down easy. They would take an early 20-6 lead and would extend it to as much as 25 before the Redbacks finally started picking it up. They would bring it back to within 4 late, but a clutch goal from W/ZB Gregorio Gentile allowed the Row to hang on and take a 1-0 series lead. Texas would pick up where they left off, though, and they would use that momentum to get out to an early Game 2 lead. They would equal their 139 from the first game, but their defense would hold the Row to just 120 and earn a split heading home.

 

That would be about as good as it got for the ‘Backs, though, as Game 3 would see the Philadelphia defense shine. They would shut down all three scoring options, with F/ZB Elenio Field and B/ZB John Evans locking down the end zone, B/Cs Joe Kestner Jr. and Patrick Sanders Jr. manning the frontcourt, and of course, their star keepers, F/K Ray Thomas and B/K LaVarius McCargo. They would win the defensive battle, 120-109, and steal back home court advantage. The Row would keep the pressure on in Game 4, barely allowing the Redbacks to break the century mark and leaving the Texas faithful sorely disappointed. With a chance to clinch at the Wells Fargo Center, the Row would not disappoint their home crowd. Their 17-7 run in the sixth inning shelved any hopes of a Texas comeback, and Philadelphia would make their second NDLCS appearance.

 

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Seattle Sawyers vs California Sea Lions
Facing their second divisional opponent in as many series, the Sawyers wouldn’t have the same luck against California as they did against Phoenix. The Sea Lions came out swinging, with six players scoring at least 20 points, and would control Game 1 from the jump, going on to win by 42 points and appearing to take control of the series. That would not be the case, as Seattle would come back in Game 2. B/ZB James Terry had an otherworldly night, contributing 64 points on offense and finishing with 24 points prevented on D. He would lead the Sawyers to a Game 2 win and knot up the series heading north.

 

The Sawyers felt confident heading into Game 3, but would be dealt a significant blow early. Terry’s most frequent connection in Game 2 had been F/ZB Walt Duncan, but just two minutes into the second quarter, he would come down awkwardly and have to come out of the game. He would later reveal he had tweaked a knee injury that he had suffered in the previous round. With Seattle having already lost their other starting forward, F/ZB Mack Lauder, they would dig to the bottom of their roster and put in 23-year-old F/ZB Jimmy Green. While Green played surprisingly well, it just wasn’t the same, and the Sawyers would only put up 95 points in Game 3. With more time to practice between games, they would recover in Game 4, but they couldn’t quite outduel California, whose 150-point performance was highlighted by 24 from W/ZB Jay Moth and 22 from B/ZB Kenton Snowberger. With their backs against the wall on the road in Game 5, the Sawyers defense stepped up and they were able to keep it close. It looked like they would pull off the win when Terry found Green in the end zone with just 2 seconds left, but a controversial delay of game call on Green would stop the clock and give California the ball at halfcourt. W/ZB Rich Abbott missed wildly on a header attempt, but it bounced right into the hands of B/K Gene Martin, whose two-handed tomahawk shot beat Sawyers B/K Clyde Edwards to give the Sea Lions the win and advance them to a very familiar terrain: the Finals.
 

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If Cali wins this, are they the first dynasty? They’ve been a top team since the first season, and it would be 2 championships in 5 and now the chance for another?

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I'd say California's already the first dynasty. They won the first two championship series and went to the third, this is their fifth finals appearance, and they have yet to miss the playoffs. That said, another chip here would certainly only increase their case.

 

I might even go so far as to say Texas is one as well, coming off two consecutive championships, three consecutive championship appearances, and a .883 winning percentage over the last four years. It probably depends on how you define dynasty.

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10 hours ago, ItDoesntMatter said:

I'd say California's already the first dynasty. They won the first two championship series and went to the third, this is their fifth finals appearance, and they have yet to miss the playoffs. That said, another chip here would certainly only increase their case.

 

I might even go so far as to say Texas is one as well, coming off two consecutive championships, three consecutive championship appearances, and a .883 winning percentage over the last four years. It probably depends on how you define dynasty.

 

So, if I bought the broadcasting rights to Dashball in the beginning, I'm probably really excited at the potential storylines this series has. 

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Well it's Halloween, and this thread isn't quite back from the dead, but it's close. I should have the Finals up soon, but I want to apologize for sort of falling off the face of the earth for the last two weeks or so. Between midterm exams, quidditch regionals, and scholarship deadlines, I haven't had as much time to work on this, but now that all of those are over, I should be able to get back into a rhythm. Thanks to all of you for sticking with me.

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California-Philadelphia would give the NDL its first Finals rematch in its young history, with the two teams having met here in 2018. While quite a lot had changed in the past five years, Game 1 looked like a pair of teams that knew each other well. The game started slow and sloppy, as the Sea Lions went into halftime with a 44-41 lead. Despite the low score, the game wasn’t without excitement, as no team had led by more than 6 points during the first half, meaning just about every possession was hugely important. The game would stay quiet for most of the second half, but a couple minutes into the final inning, the pace increased dramatically, though the game would stay just as back-and-forth as it was before. Finally, with the Row up 1 and just 12 seconds left, Philly W/ZB Benny Ochoa intercepted a pass and would find F/ZB Elenio Field upcourt. While Field’s high-arcing shot was off the mark, it wasted most of the clock, giving the Row a win to start off the series.

 

The teams would keep up the quick pace heading into the second game. After struggling to score 40 points in the first half of Game 1, Game 2 saw both teams in the triple digits early in the second half, a rarity for two defenses that both allowed under 107 points per game in the regular season. With the fear of going down 0-2 at home starting to set in, the Sea Lions would pull ahead late, winning 171-161 and tying up the series. Unfortunately for fans of scores like that, the defenses would return to form in Game 3. The trend of tight games would continue, though. California would stick in the dagger when W/K Will Orleans’ three-point toss to F/C Robby Wheeler put them up 6 with just 17 seconds to go.

 

Now it would be Philadelphia looking to avoid a two-game deficit in the series, but with their home crowd behind them once again in Game 4, their defense would get in the zone. F/K Ray Thomas and B/K LaVarius McCargo were their usual dominant selves, but 38-year-old B/C Patrick Sanders Jr. really stepped it up, with the trio only allowing 31 of the Sea Lions’ 114 total points. California’s defense wouldn’t make it easy, but the Row would tie the series up heading into an all-important fifth game back on the West Coast.

 

Game 5 started out innocently enough, and was, like every other game in the series thus far, really tight during the first half. The second half, though, would completely change things. California was rolling while Philadelphia couldn’t seem to convert any of their scoring attempts. They would score only 7 points in the whole fifth inning and the Sea Lions would take a 20-point lead when W/ZB Jay Moth opened up the 7th with a long 3-point bucket. When B/ZB Howie King returned the favor on the other end, it seemed inconsequential, but it was anything but. The Philly D-squad put on an offensive show, completely erasing that deficit by the time they switched to defense, and when they did, the O-squad would pick up right where they left off, giving the Row a statement come-from-behind win. With the First Trophy in the Wells Fargo Center two nights later, they would keep the momentum up on a deflated Cali team, throwing the knockout punch in the form of a 40-point victory and winning their first ever NDL Championship.
 

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The way I simulate things is pretty complicated, but I'll try to keep things as simple as possible. Every player has an offensive rating and a defensive rating, which were originally supposed to be between 0 and 10 but some of them have ended up outside of that range. Each player also gets what I call a yearly rating modifier, which accounts for how much they overperform or underperform in a given year, as well as injuries and whatnot. Each team gets a total offensive and defensive rating calculated from those numbers, and those numbers get plugged into the spreadsheet with the games template. As for the games themselves, I wrote a script that more or less plays through a game and calculates the score based on each team's ratings.

 

Hopefully that was detailed enough. If you have more specific questions, feel free to ask.

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