Author Topic: Most Stressful Playoffs  (Read 258 times)


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Offline MFer

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Most Stressful Playoffs
« on: October 01, 2019, 06:05:02 PM »
I'd rank them:
1. MLB
2. NHL
3. NBA
4. NFL

MLB is my pick by a decent margin. In the later stages, a tight game induces butthole-clenching to the max, especially if your team is tied or trying to preserve a lead. Any pitch has the potential to be disastrous. The playoff pressure could bring about major mistakes: wild pitches, errant throws to first, outfield miscommunications, hanging breaking balls, bad base-running, etc.

NHL and NBA are tossups to me for 2nd. While hockey doesn't allow a trailing team to take the lead in one play, sudden-death overtime is as stressful as just about anything. But OT's don't occur all the time, so that lessens things somewhat. The NBA is more susceptible to blowouts, but the close games can be doozies. Basketball is a game of runs; your team can be up 15 at the half but easily have the lead whittled down to 3 with a couple minutes left to play. Once again, the team trying to hold on faces additional anxiety. If you're at home, the fans could be sporting a nervous energy. If you're away, the opposing crowd is amped up in anticipation of a big comeback. I was waffling for awhile, but I'd put hockey ahead of basketball mainly for the relative closeness on the scoreboard.

It's funny that I put the NFL last even though I'm more emotionally invested in the league than the others. There's nothing particularly un-stressful about the NFL playoffs; it's just that it doesn't seem to have the unique factors the other leagues do (maybe the officiating can have more of an impact there, but that's about all I can come up with).

Offline Saints_Fan_H

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Re: Most Stressful Playoffs
« Reply #1 on: October 01, 2019, 09:25:55 PM »
I would have to cosign, I'm definitely more into the NFL but damn once you get used to your favorite team (usually) losing a bunch, you have to concede baseball has it worse. 5-7 game series? Blown leads? Steve Bartman? Goats? Bambino curses? Yankees stomping the Braves after being down 0-2 with the two being ass kickings.

I've lost more handshake bets  with pals on post season baseball than football.

Pro Basketball, I came up during the 90s. After the Bulls and then Lakers dynasties died off, I lost vested interest. I keep a casual eye on highlights, but doesn't give me stress at all.

If I was a fan of a good basketball college, I'd guess that's up there in stress, probably.

Offline The Art of Rasslin'

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Re: Most Stressful Playoffs
« Reply #2 on: October 01, 2019, 11:43:10 PM »
It's funny that I put the NFL last

it's because your team is never in the playoffs so there's nothing to be stressful about.

I'm not even talking shit. Speaking from the bandwagon I'm sitting on, I can relate  :'(

I can't believe a guy can be that big, and jump around like he does what a great athlete!

Online Harley Quinn

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Re: Most Stressful Playoffs
« Reply #3 on: October 02, 2019, 03:42:23 AM »
My rankings

NFL: Mostly because it's literally one and done scenarios. There are cases for blowouts but as somebody who's watched Tom Brady lead literal game winning drives, I can only imagine how stressful it must be for opposing fans to know that your team has a chance to get one step closer to the Super Bowl and all it takes is one sack, fumble, interception, run, or catch to change the outcome late. These games, especially when close, really amplify the feel that every play can make the difference.

NHL: Just chaotic action from the word go and a lot of the series tend to be tight, hard fought that can go 6 games or 7 games with ease. Even dominant teams can find themselves struggling and if a series becomes 2-2, all bets are off in my book. This sport I think is the closest to me that I actually believe in momentum being a legitimate factor in terms of how quickly something can turnaround.

MLB: By virtue of the constraints, MLB can definitely be pressure packed but I find just as easily teams can run away with a series or even a game (e.g. the Red Sox murdering the Yankees in the final game of the 2004 ALCS after Damon's Grand Slam). I do find that the Wild Card and Divisional Rounds aren't that impactful for me but the World Series can be up there when two good teams square off.

NBA: Too much is dependent on talent and runs within games (nevermind the referees and the constant free throw strategy at the end of games which IMO kill the intensity of a tight game). Even as a Celtics fan, I've never really felt pressure when I watched the Celtics in their playoff runs because the NBA doesn't tend to close, tight games in comparison to other sports. For every memorably tight game in a Finals series, you may get 2-3 blowouts that don't even register because they're so commonplace.

Offline Kahran Ramsus

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Re: Most Stressful Playoffs
« Reply #4 on: October 02, 2019, 04:04:37 AM »
1.  NFL.  Because of the one and done.  A slight mistake or one bad referee's decision can bury a team in an instant.

2.  MLB.  Wild Card is one and done, plus the sport itself is a stressful one.  Nothing like having the bases loaded with the cleanup guy at the plate down two runs against the opposing closer.  Baseball is also the most prone to upsets, especially in a short series.  Even the worst teams win 30-35% of the time.

3.  NHL.  Low scoring and chaotic.  The second most likely to produce upsets after baseball.

4.  NBA.  Distant fourth.  Very predictable.  The team with the best players almost always wins (and when they don't it is usually because of injuries).  There is much less randomness than the other three sports.  Also, because there are so many points involved a single mistake is easy to recover from unless it is in like the last minute or so.

Offline alkeiper

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Re: Most Stressful Playoffs
« Reply #5 on: October 02, 2019, 04:48:05 AM »
MLB puts you in hell, every day, for a month. And that's after a six month regular season where you're fighting for a playoff spot in a league that portions the fewest playoff spots. And the games go past midnight on the East Coast. I'll take a Super Bowl that starts at 6pm over watching my team get curbstomped by the Yankees four games out of six and losing sleep for a week in the process.

Offline Boomer Kamala

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Re: Most Stressful Playoffs
« Reply #6 on: October 02, 2019, 05:32:40 AM »
The AFC Championship Game last year gave me more stress and anxiety than anything I've watched since the last season of Breaking Bad. It was so nerve wracking that I wasn't even really thrilled with the result, I was just glad that it was over. So yeah, NFL is easily #1 for me. MLB is 2nd, NHL is 3rd, and NBA is 4th. Basketball is definitely my favorite of the 4 but we rarely get a massive upset, barring catastrophic injury or team chemistry (hello '03-'04 Lakers) past the first round or 2.

Offline AA484

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Re: Most Stressful Playoffs
« Reply #7 on: October 02, 2019, 05:37:36 AM »
I know it's not a pro sport, but the NCAA tournament may be the most stressful for me.

Offline Thrasher

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Re: Most Stressful Playoffs
« Reply #8 on: October 02, 2019, 05:50:09 AM »
NHL because there's so much parity in the league.
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Offline New-New-New England Order

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Re: Most Stressful Playoffs
« Reply #9 on: October 02, 2019, 07:26:04 AM »
NHL playoff overtime gives me heart palpitations even if a team I like isn't even involved.    I guess the NFL is next because it's single elimination followed by MLB (though I kinda hate the Wild Card play-in game format).

Offline Kotzenjunge

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Re: Most Stressful Playoffs
« Reply #10 on: October 02, 2019, 10:23:45 AM »
I spent the 2010 (games in 2011) NFL playoffs hoping a rocket/mortar attack wouldn't interrupt my viewing. The NFL wins on that metric.

That said, my vote got fucked up. Nothing matches big league baseball for anticipation and release.

Offline cobainwasmurdered

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Re: Most Stressful Playoffs
« Reply #11 on: October 03, 2019, 09:12:22 AM »
I'm not into NHL anymore really but there is nothing as stressful as Playoff OT. I remember the 4 overtime game between Washington/Pitts and the feeling when Nedved scored the game winner. I also remember the FIVE OT game against Philly but fuck them.

Offline skullman80

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Re: Most Stressful Playoffs
« Reply #12 on: October 03, 2019, 10:53:48 AM »
NHL and it's not close.

Offline Flik

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Re: Most Stressful Playoffs
« Reply #13 on: October 04, 2019, 01:17:20 AM »
NHL - If it wasn't for the fact that it acts like a completely different season. Things you thought you knew gets tossed out the window. If a goalie decides that "now is my time", you can end up with a completely unreasonable team making it to the finals. Add in playoff overtime that can radically shift a series or a team's fortunes and it is wild ride.

NFL - If it wasn't for the above things, NFL would be 1st for me. One and done means you only get one chance at this thing. Less chance though of a "weaker" team upsetting the "better" team though.

MLB - Wild card one & dones have added a nice new flavour to them. It has been more chaotic lately, so it is getting close to being #2 for me.

NBA - Right now you watch the NBA to see if the team who's got all the right pieces fucks it up or has misfortune and crashes. Maybe we'll see a change of this with all the swapping that happened over the summer.


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Re: Most Stressful Playoffs
« Reply #14 on: October 04, 2019, 02:50:01 AM »
Gotta be NFL since it’s one and done as most have stated.  NBA is my favorite, of course, but usually I find it fairly predictable who will win the series going in.  Only in game 7 does it really reach NFL levels of drama.  Then again this might just be because the Colts’ title hopes have usually been more promising than the Pacers, leading to a greater feeling of disappointment upon losing.
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