An examination of the total number of scores in the league and All-Ireland finals is interesting. The figure above presents the 5-year moving average number of scores in the league and All-Ireland football finals. It starts in 1979 to remove the impact of the 80 minute All-Ireland finals from the early 1970s.
There seems to be a clear change in the number of scores in the league finals since the All-Ireland competition structure has changed. On the surface this seems strange. Why would the number of scores in one completion be influenced by changes in the structure of a different competition? Maybe it is just a coincidence. Or maybe there is some causation. I won't go into listing and evaluating all the possible channels of causation in this blog post. That said, it is interesting to note that the number of scores in League finals increase, and more closely follows, those of the All-Ireland finals from 2001. (For what it is worth the correlation between the number of league final score and All-Ireland final scores for the period 1960-2000 is 0.083 where as it is 0.21 for the 2001-2013 period.)
A word of warning should be issued about a good league run. Since 1960 only four of the beat league finalists have gone on to win the All-Ireland. By contrast, there have been fifteen winners of both competitions. It seems that getting to the league final may be of some benefit but winning it is a serious signal for the greater glory.