One statistical rule of thumb in basketball is that a team leading by more points than there are minutes left near the end of the game has an 80 percent chance of winning. If your team is down by more than 6 points halfway through the final quarter, and you’re anxious to beat the traffic, you can leave knowing that there is slightly less than a 20 percent chance you’ll miss a victory; on the other hand, if you miss a victory, it will have been an improbable and therefore sensational one.

The No-Stats All-Star – NYTimes.com.