Welcome to the latest episode of Hot Takedown, FiveThirtyEight’s sports podcast. On this week’s show (Feb. 23, 2016),1 we ask why Canadian hockey teams have failed to win the Stanley Cup for the past 20-odd years and whether that makes them unlucky or just bad, we make our first foray into the world of Nascar and wonder why Daytona 500 finishes are only getting closer, and we explain how Anthony Davis’s 59/20 game was a throwback to another era of the NBA. Plus a significant digit on Rachel Banham, the Big Ten basketball player ripping up the college game.
Stream the episode by clicking the play button, or subscribe using one of the podcast clients we’ve linked to above. Links to what we discussed are here:
- In 2013, Nate Silver looked into why Canadian hockey teams were in the midst of a Stanley Cup drought.
- Neil Paine wrote about championship droughts, and how they’re sometimes not as bad as they seem.
- David Smith on why Dale Earnhardt Jr. was the most likely driver to win the Daytona 500.
- If you’re looking for a motorsports analytics fix, here is Smith’s Motorsports Analytics website.
- Paine put Anthony Davis’s great game in historical context.
- Zach Lowe asked whether the Golden State Warriors should sign Kevin Durant.
- The Warriors should give the ball to Steph Curry more, according to Ben Morris.
- Significant Digit: 2. That’s the number of 50-point games Minnesota’s Rachel Banham has produced this month.
CORRECTION (Feb. 24, 2:53 p.m.): Because of an editing error, an earlier version of this article misidentified the driver predicted by David Smith to win the Daytona 500. It was Dale Earnhardt, Jr. not David Earnhardt Jr.
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