Thursday, September 29, 2005

30 Reasons to Get Fired Up For the 2005-06 NBA Season - #12

Fantasy Basketball

Sitting down to compile all of the reasons why I love fantasy basketball was more difficult than I thought. If I got too detailed I may lose your attention. If I’m too cut and dry then I’m pretty much Eric Karabell without the glasses. At first I was going to give my top-30 reasons why I love FB (I don’t really call it FB, because that could possibly be the most pathetic acronym on Earth), but instead I trimmed it down to a much more manageable ten. In the end it turned out to be more of a fantasy guide, but hopefully one you will enjoy. Here goes…

10. Team Names

Selecting a good team name is extremely important. Remember that this is how your opponents are going to view you for the entire season. More often than not however, managers fail to come up with anything creative or original. Here are the three categories of team names as I see them:

LAME: DWadeFavPlaya3, BullzRool23

These names would be fine if we were in the 8-12 age group. But I’ve seen selections like this from people already graduated from college. Jesus man, put in 30 seconds of thought. No one cares who your favorite player or team are, trust me.

THOUGHTLESS: Shaq’s Free Throws, Reefer Alston

Names like this usually come from the kid who “did sick in his basketball league last year” and was granted new entry to yours. Oh yeah dude, who did you play with? “My cousins and some buddies.” Translation: kids who would take Andrew Bogut in the first round and consider Esteban Batista a sleeper. That’s no big accomplishment bro, but keep on thinking Reefer Alston is hilarious while the rest of us hammer you on the message board (coming later).

DOPE: Nenad’s Gonads (Paul’s), Alonzo’s Dialysis, Blatche’s Bullet, Taking a Viktor Khryapa (Simmons’ I believe)

It’s really not that hard to come up with something. Sure, maybe two of these are a little over the edge, but who cares? It’s fantasy. I’ve seen much worse, trust me.

9. Sleepers

Every year there are a handful of guys ready to burst on the scene who are worthy of a 4th-6th round pick. The problem is figuring out who these players are and exactly when to select them.

Here’s what to do:

--Do your freakin’ RESEARCH. Don’t listen to James Quintong, look shit up yourself

--Base your selections on how players fared last season (or this preseason), especially during the final month or so

--If you’re going to take rookies, it’s best that you don’t reach no matter how tempting it may be

--Stick to rookies who played well in college or high schoolers on the LeBron/Howard level

--Only label a guy a sleeper if you know for sure that he’s starting or getting 30+ minutes

Here’s what NOT to do:

--If there’s a proven center ready to nab in the 5th, then don’t take a chance on guys like Fabricio Oberto. Players like this will more than likely be available at the conclusion of your draft

--Don’t take 2nd year players too early. But if there’s say an Al Jefferson sitting around and the PF crop is dwindling down, of course take that chance. But on the contrary, don’t take a Dwight Howard in the first round of a 10-team league. It’s just foolish. There are plenty of better players out there, guys that have actually proven something.

--NEVER, EVER tell one of your buddies about a sleeper you discovered. Not only will he take this guy 1 or 2 picks before you’re ready to, but he’ll rub it in your face all season especially after that guy goes for 37 and 11 in the first week of the season. Trust me, you’ll want to kill yourself.

8. Drafting

There is nothing on Earth I’d rather do than take part in a fantasy basketball draft. Sifting through dozens of sheets with player projections, stats, rankings, etc. not only will put a smile on your face but it will also infuriate anyone in your house not involved in the draft. I recommend a beer or six during the process to ease the pain of those nitwits taking the full 2-minute allotment for every pick. Another good idea is to queue up a few players to prepare for your next pick. There are always some sleepers sitting deep in the rankings that other managers will foolishly forget about. Don’t be that guy. Remember that players you end up selecting from the 5th round on could prove just as valuable as your initial picks. I beat a kid in the Playoffs last year without Duncan or Maggette. You know who my unsung hero was? Yup, none other than Nick Collison. Never underestimate your late round picks.

7. Who goes 1?

More important (and enjoyable) than deciding between Garnett and King James, is fucking with the guy who has that initial selection. Fire starters include:

--“Yo Freddie, just so you know they said KG might elect to sit out the second half of the year if Minnesota isn’t in the Playoff chase”

--“Have you thought about Kobe at all? I sure would…”

Now if “Freddie” has any intelligence whatsoever he probably won’t believe a word you say. But nevertheless you’ll definitely make him start to second-guess that pick. If all goes well he’ll respond with, “Dude SHUDDDDDUP, I’m taking LeBron.” Then you give the mandatory: “Oh you are? You sure about that one?” Trust me, you’ll have him losing sleep, fucking up at work, questioning his manhood, etc. It’s really a lot of fun, unless of course you’re that guy picking first.

6. Posts/Message Board

In the Yahoo! Leagues and I’m assuming mostly every other league, the main page provides the managers with a message board. Honestly, I don’t know where I would be without this. I love making kids look foolish and starting wars with managers I don’t even know just because I’m bored one afternoon. Saying things like, “Yo, Rip’s Nips, nice job picking up Randy Livingston. Your girlfriend even told me last night what a bad pick that was.” Sure it’s low, but chances are you’ll never see half of these guys anyway. Be ruthless, I always am.

5. Being a GM

If you love sports, how could you not dream about being the General Manager of a professional franchise? Making trades, signing free agents, decided whom to cut—It would be a dream come true. Well, for most of us (and when I say most I mean all) that dream is dead. The closest we’re ever going to come to running a team is fantasy. So make sure when your pulling off a blockbuster with Dikembe’s Donkey Dick, you don’t give away Dwight Howard for Ian Mahinmi. Be smart, realize that every move not only dictates the next week of play, but also how the entire season plays out. After all, this is your only chance to see how you would fare if you were really handed the reigns of a pro team.

4. Accumulating NBA Knowledge and Using it to Your Advantage

Another great thing about following the NBA on a regular basis is that you gain knowledge to almost everything going on. You know how many Iverson dropped last night, who’s in first in the Atlantic, who shattered their femur last Tuesday, etc. So when some asshole at a bar thinks he’s an NBA god, you can quickly put him in his place.

Chip (moron at the bar): “Dude, did you see Amare last night? 41 points, 13 boards, and 7 blocks! Sick huh?”

Me (overhearing this idiot and subsequently chiming in): “Actually bro, that was last week and Amare had 49, 16, and 8.”

Chip: “Oh yeah, I think you’re right…”

Meanwhile I’m feeling on top of the world for making this douche bag in the pink button-down look like a fool, he’s feeling a bit less cocky, and every girl sees what a pompous loser he is. Yeah, and I’m sure I look really slick knowing how many blocks a guy recorded in a game last week. So remember, if you want to be the man and show off your statistical knowledge fine, but just make sure there are NO chicks around.

3. Box Scores

I don’t know about you, but when I get to work the first thing I run and do is check last night’s box scores. I can’t wait to see how many rebounds Mario Kasun had and if I actually have a shot at taking assists this week. Sure I’m a loser and should be working on my TPS reports, but fantasy comes first. Plus, checking the box scores is an excellent way to track players you might want to pick up. For instance, if your 7th round pick of Chris Kaman isn’t working out (big surprise), perhaps it’s worth taking a chance on Channing Frye. I can’t believe I’m actually admitting to these things.

2. Ripping on Fantasy geeks

Now as much as I love fantasy, I can’t help but clown on all of the fantasy geeks on ESPN, CNNSI, Yahoo!, etc. You just know that for any one of these guys, a dope Friday night consists of pulling off a sick trade that might net him 0.8 more APG the rest of the way. Or it’s immediately nabbing Nene when Kenyon Martin goes out with a thigh contusion, then calling his buddy and condescendingly saying, “Dude you hear about Kenyon? Yeah, too late bro, I already got him, sorry.” No, this is not an actual conversation between Vincent Huang and Tristan Cockcroft. Well, actually it might be. Anyway, always keep in mind that there’s a fine line between having a hobby and an obsession. Know your limits.

1. Taking money from friends

Everyone likes making money, but it’s always more fun when you beat your buddies and they have to hand over a nice chunk of change. They have no choice but to be a good sport about it, but inside their blood is pumping like liquid magma. Inside your head there is a private circus going on with chimps and lions doing summersaults and playing hopscotch. At the end of this exchange you MUST give a small conniving grin just at the chance that one of your buddies loses it. There’s absolutely nothing better than a brawl over fantasy sports. The next morning the asshole that started it realizes what he did and has no choice but to shy away from the group for weeks at a time. On that note I’m going to go get a life. Enjoy your 2005-06 Fantasy season.


At 12:08 AM, Blogger asdf said...

I'm looking for a competitive league to play in this year. A league where everybody participates year round. You have any openings? And you play rotisserrie right? I don't like that head to head stuff in NBA FB.

At 2:39 AM, Blogger Paul Benedict said...

Good shit, holmes. I purposely asked you to write this piece too, that way I wouldn't have to give away my two-time championship winning tips to you and other losers in our league who read this. See, there's reason #11 right there-- trick your partner into writing a piece on fantasy so you can rip him in a comment.

At 9:13 AM, Blogger Anthony Peretore said...

Haha, well done DDDDDDick.

At 9:08 PM, Anonymous Mike P said...

hey guys,

I'm a big fan. just a quick question, i know you guys are big fans of devin brown; where would you draft him considering he should easily flourish (17ppg, 6rpg) in utah's system? I'm from S.A. and I went to school with him too so I'm kinda been on the band wagon for a while. Thanks!

At 12:52 PM, Blogger Anthony Peretore said...

Deciding where to draft guys like Brown is tough to pinpoint. He's never been a starter, he's never had huge minutes, he's playing in a brand new system, etc. The other reason I can't say for sure is because you have to see how your Draft is going. Obviously if the decision comes between Brown and a Ricky Davis, you go with the experience and nab Davis. But if you already have a couple of nice GFs and can take the risk on Brown, I'd do it. Although I think 17 PPG might be stretching it. Remember that this Utah team still has Giricek and Harpring. Be smart, don't let your bias sway you to take Devin too early. But he's a real nice sleeper for rounds 7-10. Good luck.

PS-I think Paul's a little higher on him than I am, so his advice might be better for you. He's seen him play a lot more than I have.

At 3:15 PM, Anonymous Prescott said...

Hey you guys what do you think is the best set up for a Yahoo fantasy basketball league? I'm talking about roster sizes, # of bench spots, fantasy categories, # of teams, and things like that. Thanks in advance guys.

At 3:30 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

if it's not 5 cat, it sucks


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