If you’ve run one of the traditional March Madness pools, then you will be familiar with how this system works – with the goal being to correctly navigate the teams through the bracket. Every correct pick from a round is awarded a certain number of points, and the person with the most points at the end wins the prize.
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There are also a couple of other ideas for pools you can run while the playoffs continue. The first is called the NBA Playoff Squares. This is similar to the Super Bowl Squares but instead of numbers you will be writing the team names in the top row for the Eastern Conference, and in the left column goes the Western Conference. A square which intersects the two teams who make it to the NBA finals is the winner.
The second idea is called the NBA Playoff Confidence Pool where each participant ranks each playoff team with a score between 1 and 16. A winning team is then awarded the corresponding number of points.
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1. Print off as many brackets as you need for the number of people you think will be interested in participating in the pool.
2. Pass out the brackets to as many people as you can think of, including friends, family, co-workers, or even distant relatives. Every person is then required to fill out the bracket with the team they are confident will win each series. If there’s a tie you can have each person jot down what they think the total number of points in the final game of the championship will be, or you could get creative and come up with your own idea; for example, the total points scored throughout the entire championship.
3. Gather up all of the brackets before the playoffs start and, just to keep it interesting, you might like to print off and give each participant a copy of every other persons’ entry. It’s a lot of printing but it increases the fun with everybody able to check up on the competition, and also ensures that the pool is being run fairly.
4. A set number of points are assigned to each round (whatever you come up with is fine), but make sure you alert all of the participants as to exactly what the scoring system is. Our preferred scoring system is:
First round = 1 point
Semifinals = 2 points
Conference finals = 3 points
Championship = 5 points
Once the championship game is complete tally up the total number of points for each participant – with the winner being the one with the most points.