Odds | History | Rules
Magic Men - Happy Handicapper Embarrassed!
Randy Buehler 10
Sceadeau D'Tela 4
Andrew Emerick 9
Ed Fear 0
86 teams entered the 22nd “run for the slivers” at
the 2012 WBC and the big news before post time was that someone
had replaced perennial favorite Nest of Spies at the top
of the odds makers' list. The Happy Handicapper's seeming love
affair with the three-time champs had been tarnished by the absence
of heavy hitters Dave Docktor and Stefan Mecay. However, truth
be told, the new girl on the block that had stolen the heart of
our prognosticator was a collection of ringers sharing an unfortunate
given name and now plying their trade under the nom de plume Your
Name's Not Bruce. So impressed was the Happy Handicapper with
the collective resume of these ringers that no others were given
the chance of the proverbial snowball in you-know-where. Such
was his disdain for mere mortals, that a veritable chasm existed
in the odds falloff after the first two picks. So, how did his
two darlings fare? Surely, they finished in a dead heat for the
title? But Nooooooooooooooooooo! Neither was found in the Top
Ten. The best they could manage was a 12th by the Nest—and as for the new apple of his eye, the Bumbling Brace of
Bruces, they were nowhere to be found in the Top 25. Indeed,
one had to extend one's gaze into the low-rent district of 49th
place to find the final residence of the top ranked team despite
the presence of the owner of WBC's longest winning streak...seven years down the drain under Reiff management. Sometimes life
is just so damn good! But I digress...
Needless to say, it was an off year for the Happy Handicapper
with only two of his top picks making the Top Ten. He improved
in the also-ran range with 12 of his top 25 picks (48%) making
the Top 25 cut—bringing his five-year average back to 54.4%. Those
who followed his advice fared poorly in our Annual Bracket Busting
Apparently, this business of predicting winners isn't all that
easy after all, so perhaps we should cut the Happy Handicapper
some slack. Or maybe he just led most of you down the primrose
path to suckerville. Despite an increase in entries, Mark Love's
2009 winning score of six correct guesses in our initial contest
proved to once again be setting the bar too high as this year's
high score was a single entry correctly selecting five teams.
Even more astounding was that only two entries managed to identify
four Top Ten teams! Of course, when nearly everyone begins with
two incorrect guesses for Nest and the Bruces, that doesn't leave
much room for error. That is especially true when long shots prevail
as evidenced by the seventh place Local Yokels not being
slected by a single entry. Congratulations to Andy Latto for winning
a free 2012 BPA membership by correctly guessing Ski Patrol,
Wabbits Wevenge, Magic Men, Wood Be Contenders and Not
Age of Steam in that order. The latter was the difference
with very few entries choosing the Quebec team including Eric
Freeman and Kyle Smith whose entries both correctly included Band
of Fools but could muster only four correct answers.
Obviously, our prognosticator needs to go back to the drawing
board before making picks for 2013. His reliance on WBC resumes
leaves gaping holes for skilled gamers relatively new to the WBC
lists to break his odds and score big. 2012 was a big year for
the long shots—with Magic Men—led by the reigning Caesar
no less - overcoming 73-1 odds (?!) to take the whole shebang.
Gotta like those odds. But they got even better. The EPGS team Four to Beam Up finished second despite 111-1 odds and
the Finnsh delegation Ski Patrol which was likewise shown
little respect at 200-1 odds proved otherwise with a fourth place
finish. Even the Greenspielers, ranked 84th of 86 teams, defied
their 1,000-1 odds to place 22nd. Only Band of Fools and Wood Bee Contenders performed to form with fifth and sixth
place finishes respectively to salvage at least some face for
the chagrined Handicapper. Band of Fools was also the only
team to avoid the Weak Link syndrome, with points from all four
team members, The importance of such scoring depth is best shown
by Wood Bee Contenders whose first three members all scored
to record 16 points. That left the fourth member who owned the
current longest WBC winning streak with four straight titles in
his team game and was destined to win a WBC-best four events this
year. How could they lose? I don't know, Jason, how did you lose?
Shutouts decreased again to 25—comprising 29% of all entries.
The highest ranked squad to post nothing but goose eggs and thereby
earn the 2012 title for Most Overrated was the 6th-ranked group
of Cabbies, Roll One Die. Fame is indeed fleeting, but
not nearly as embarassing as that of the head Cabbie's highest
ranked team's fall from grace!
The Lady Luck team won the Misery Loves Company title
with 777 entrants for an average of 194.25 entrants per event.
Apparently the ladies like crowds. On the opposite end of the
social scale, claiming the Big Fish in the Small Pond title was KGB Comrades who dropped a 7 digit from that tally to manage
just 77 total entrants in their block game focus to average just
19.25 players per event.
All in all, our 344 players selected 132 different events.
The most frequently named choices for the Team Tournament was Carcassonne with nine and Here I Stand and Pirate's Cove with eight. Other top choices
were Ticket to Ride, Lost Cities and Ra at
seven and Empire Builder, Galaxy, Ivanhoe and Settlers of Catan at six. In all, 26 Team participants
(7.55%) won their selected events. That is up from 2011 (6.5%)
but down from the high water mark of 9% in 2009. The percentage
remains consistently in the 6-9% range.
|2012 Teams, in order of finish
Click on the graphic to see a larger version.
Unofficial team logos courtesy of Dave Dockter and Kaarin Engelmann.
Some logos provided by the teams.
NOTE: Points=Points (number of points earned).Entrants (total number of entrants in all of team's events)
Red numbers indicate that a bonus point is included for earning team points in a game they have not won previously
Name: Magic Men
|Name: EPGS Four to Beam Up
|Name: Cynical Stoics
Mike Ussery/ HRC/0,
Name: Ski Patrol
|Name: Band of Fools
Name: Wood Bee Contenders
|Name: Local Yokels
|Name: Not Age of Steam!
|Name: Tea Brigade
Name: EPGS Wabbits Wevenge
Name: We Ain't Dead Yet!
Name: Nest of Spies
|Name: Gaming Speed Bumps
Name: Greenville Mafia: War
|Name: Rhesus Pieces
|Name: The Old Guard
|Name: KGB Comrades
|Name: Tell Me The Odds
Name: Yoshi's Tea Time
|Name: Cardboard Heroes
Name: Desperation Grand
|Name: Polish Lancers