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Hoops style question

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by tenacious_g, Jan 13, 2007.

  1. tenacious_g

    tenacious_g Member

    I think I have this down, but in case I don't I won't tell everyone what side of the debate I'm on here... and for what it's worth, I have seen AP do it both ways in college and NBA gamers in the past week. I have a hyphen/modifier/grammar/we're all idiots here question and I apologize in advance for the ignorance.

    When is it 4-of-5 and when is it 4 of 5?


    does using the word "for" change things? (4-for-5 or 4 for 5)

    I've got a college basketball writer here who refuses to use the hyphens ever and I want to make sure I'm telling him the correct usage of when to do it, but I want to make sure. In a random AP story tonight on the Jazz/SuperSonics game, the article had the following paragraph:

    "Okur found his shooting touch in the fourth quarter, hitting 4 of 5 shots, and finished with 23 overall. But Okur didn’t attempt a shot in overtime, while Kirilenko and Williams were a combined 1-for-7."

    Sorry if this is elementary school shit, but apparently we can't seem to agree here.
  2. Riddick

    Riddick Active Member

    Buck, that's one of the better explanations I've read. Cause I've seen AP stories where it doesn't seem to follow any sort of rule with contradictions throughout.
  3. Cosmo

    Cosmo Well-Known Member

    My thoughts:

    Iverson is struggling through a 4-for-32 shooting slump.
    O'Neal hit 10 of 22 free throws.

    To me, 10 of 22 free throws shouldn't get a hyphen. Doesn't look right. And definitely no hyphens for standalone stats, like Anthony had a career-high 22 rebounds and hit 15 of 16 field goals.
  4. MileHigh

    MileHigh Moderator Staff Member

    To me, it looks weird without the hyphens, and it's not so much that it's modifying, but it's keeping everything together as one entity. It's his shooting stats. Kind of like in baseball. "Ripken went 3-for-4." It's always hyphenated. To me, it's just keeping the stat together as one.
  5. joe king

    joe king Active Member

    As one of the resident anal editor types on the board, I'll weigh in.

    The story cited in the original post is correct. Don't take it personally, Buck, but you are incorrect. It's the same as passing in football: Brady completed 17 of 24 passes, but Brady finished with 283 yards on 17-for-24 passing.

    I'm not 100 percent certain of the actual rule governing this, but it makes logical sense (to me at least). Think of it this way. When the numbers follow the verb, the first number can stand on its own -- Brady completed 17 passes -- so it's not part of a hyphenated entity. In the other instances, the number is meaningless without the rest -- Iverson shot 10 -- so the hyphens tie it together.
  6. Cosmo

    Cosmo Well-Known Member

    joe ... great way to put it. You explained it a lot better than I could. I was thinking what you were thinking, but I couldn't put it into words.
  7. Angola!

    Angola! Guest

    Maybe this was answered last week but I didn't see it:

    If a player blocks a shot, is there a rebound?
  8. Bubba Fett

    Bubba Fett Active Member

    My paper makes us use hyphens for of and for. I don't like it with the of, but not my decision.
  9. Yes.
  10. chazp

    chazp Active Member

    Hyphenate and relax.You'll live longer.
  11. Bruhman

    Bruhman Active Member

    At some point I memorized the following: You need 'for' for hypens (10-for-12 vs. 10 of 12).

    Don't know if it's correct and can't say for certain that I always follow it. But I've never forgotten it.
  12. SF_Express

    SF_Express Active Member

    Buck, your way makes logical sense -- but it's indeed the opposite.

    If you have the word "passes" or "shots" or whatever, or its presence can be implied, there are no hyphens.

    He completed 12 of 24 passes for 242 yards. He made 10 of 15 shots for 20 points.

    And: Jones was accurate with his passes. He completed 20 of 24 for 242 yards (passes implied).

    However, Jones was 20-for-24 for 242 yards and three touchdowns. Smith was 12-for-18 from the field for 24 points.
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