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Los Alamos | With nuclear arsenal squared away, researchers turn to soccer

Posted By John Turnbull On 7 January 2006 @ 06:20 In Uncategorized | No Comments

Los Alamos, New Mexico | Soccer has been classified as the world’s most competitive sport [1], at least in statistical analysis covering English football’s top division, Major League Baseball, the National Hockey League, National Football League and National Basketball Association. Analysts representing Los Alamos National Laboratory [2] and Boston University studied results of more than 300,000 games, concluding that soccer offers the best opportunity for a lower-placed team to defeat a higher-placed team. The authors considered the likelihood of upsets as the measure for competitiveness.

Perhaps as a result of a comment to New Scientist—in which lead author Eli Ben-Naim [3] said a dearth of upsets makes games “boring [4]“—media have pitched the study as a judgment on which sport is most exciting. Respondents in a New Scientist forum [5] rise to the bait to offer rugby, Irish hurling and Australian Rules football as the better game, but Peter Gillies in Afghanistan offers interesting perspective: “Here in Kabul we get to see the horsemen bat the dead goat around—bushkashi—from time to time. One adapts to the local definition of what is sport.”

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URL to article: http://www.theglobalgame.com/blog/2006/01/los-alamos-with-nuclear-arsenal-squared-away-researchers-turn-to-soccer/

URLs in this post:

[1] world’s most competitive sport: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/4581374.stm

[2] Los Alamos National Laboratory: http://www.lanl.gov/

[3] Eli Ben-Naim: http://cnls.lanl.gov/~ebn/

[4] boring: http://www.newscientist.com/article.ns?id=dn8531

[5] forum: http://community.newscientist.com/thread.jspa?threadID=139&tstart=0

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