Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob Richards
I don't buy into chance or even the law of averages.
Look at our PowerPlay. I don't think we are ever "due" for one. It's completely up in the air with each new opportunity. Same thing with the Cup. No one is ever "due" or "owed" via some otherworldly force.

That's true in a way, however the more opportunities you get on the powerplay the higher the chances that you will eventually score are. You're not "due", but the chances of you not scoring go down.
Here's a couple of math exercises to consider:
Say you have a terrible PP that only has a 10% chance of scoring. This is not perfect since there are so many factors that go in to scoring on PP. Just because you have up to that point had 10% success rate DOESN'T mean that you have a 10% chance to score on a given PP. However, just to make it simple we'll use a terrible PP that has a 10% chance of scoring. A simple exercise to show that the more PPs you get the better chance you have of scoring.
Say you have 9 PPs. The chances of you not scoring in this flawed example are 0.9 (10% chance of scoring, 90% chance of failure) to the power of 9. That's about 39%. The chances of you not scoring if there are 10 PPs are about 35%. Not a huge difference, but a difference nonetheless.
Now, here's the thing, 35% is still the highest possible outcome of all possible individual outcomes. Basically that's still higher odds than say not scoring on the first 9 and scoring on the last one. However, when you consider how many different possible outcomes there are it's really a small chance. There are 2 to the power of 10 possible outcomes, that's 1,024. So the other 1,023 possible outcomes of you not going 0 for 10 that have about a 65% chance of happening. With each successive PP the chances when taken as a whole of the possible outcome being going 0 for, decrease.
That said, if you already had 9 PPs where you didn't score a goal, then chances that you won't score on the 10th PP are still 90%, they won't decrease because of the other 9 PPs failing. Just taken as a whole, if you frame the question what is the chance of this bad PP team failing 10 straight times on the PP, the answer is worse than failing 9 straight times, and not very good.