Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Fantasy Reconstruction

Hopefully Wade has the cajones to carry my fantasy squad

Thinking back a few months ago, I seem to recall a fantasy football craze sweeping through our sports nation. If you went onto ESPN.com during that span of 30 days or so, you could find free leagues for “practice”, projections, rankings, analysts’ picks, how many biceps curls Ed Hoculi successfully completed this summer, etc. Fantasy Football was everywhere, no matter where you looked, everyone was talking about it: guys, girls, moms, infants, squirrels, everyone. So why isn’t this same obsession encompassing the basketball world right now? No, I’m not going to get into my weekly “The NBA isn’t popular enough” spiel, I just want to get to the bottom of why Fantasy Basketball hasn’t become a bigger hobby. In my eyes, the first reason is that most people (or so they claim) do not have enough time to check their rosters every day to update their lineups. While this only takes approximately 28.34 seconds of a given day (or you can simply set your lineups for all 82 games at the beginning of the season), amazingly people still find excuses. The other reason is that no one wants to take the time to figure out the scoring. Those thirteen category leagues where you need to subtract 3/4ths of your shooting guards’ 2nd quarter minutes and divide that by the number of free-throws he attempts on Mondays just gets way too confusing. Factoring in free-throw percentages, turnovers, personal fouls, etc. just gets far too tedious and ultimately discourages the majority of potential managers. Here’s the solution to keeping things simple.

Since 2000 (our first year of college), Paul has successfully run an annual fantasy basketball league while managing to retain the same core of nine or ten managers. Seemingly every year we all look forward to the upcoming season more and more, partly because of the advancement in trash talking, but mostly because of the simplicity of the league. You see, we don’t play in those 19-category leagues where you need Microsoft Excel 2010-Nanobite Edition to figure out if LeBron or KG is the better 1st pick. We keep it simple and stick to a head-to-head, five-category confederation that consists of points, rebounds, assists, steals, and blocks—all positive statistics. Thus, a player like Allen Iverson is drafted where he should be because he doesn’t have the 4.6 turnovers or poor FG% weighing him down. This makes our draft ridiculously simple because essentially all that's required is to fill all five categories as best as you can. There are just three rules: take the players who provide the most offense early and often, sprinkle in a few sleepers, and be sure to screw your buddies out of one or two picks. I mean, who wouldn't want to be a part of this league? So the real question is, why the hell don’t more people set up their leagues to resemble ours? I guess it's because most managers think you’re "supposed to" take part in a league that factors in negative statistics. But never once do I recall the Fantasy Gods making this imperative. We must never forget that this is a hobby and if things get too complicated to enjoy it, we must be doing something wrong. So with two weeks still separating us from the start of the season, make sure you do your best to enter/create a league with these simplified parameters. Take our word for it that you’ll have the time of your life.

If you’re interested, here are the results of our 2005-06 Fantasy Draft, which was conducted this past Sunday. Some after-thoughts on the draft before you check the picks:

Paul’s brother: “In the end, it was hard to tell if some of the managers were actually even there.”

Paul: “This thing was an aBOMination!”

Team names and final results at the end…


ROUND 1:

KG, LeBron, Duncan, Kobe, Dirk, Marion, T-Mac, Wade (Me), AK-47 (Paul), Amare, Iverson, Jermaine, Pierce, Arenas, Nash, Shaq

Analysis: I was a bit shocked that Ben elected to go with KG, but definitely not a bad pick by any means. I was happy to land Wade here, but was really hoping for Dirk to slide. The kid who chose Amare is in Thailand and was shucking bamboo at the time of the draft. Why Paul insisted he remain in the league is beyond me. Still some dope players left on the board heading into the second…

ROUND 2:

S. Francis, Yao, Marbury, Artest, Kidd, Ridnour, B. Davis, Bibby (Paul), V. Carter (me), R. Allen, Peja, Brand, B.Miller, A. Miller, C. Bosh, Dwight Howard

Analysis: What’s the one pick that stands out here? Uh yeah, Ridnour. Brodeur claimed to have “hit the wrong thing”, or something like that. What did he hit, the monitor? This isn’t a touch screen draft bro, get it together. Howard was the one guy I was hoping to slip to me in the 3rd. I was pretty pumped with Vince even though I was really planning on getting a big guy in this round.

ROUND 3:

Okafor, B. Wallace, Hughes, R. Lewis, Ilgauskas, Ginobili, J. Johnson, P. Gasol (Me), Carmelo (Paul), R. Jefferson, K. Hinrich, J-Rich, Kenyon, Camby, B. Gordon, Z. Randolph

Analysis: Okafor seemed a little unnecessary after he already had KG and Dwight, but still not a bad pick. I really wanted Joe Johnson coming back, but desperately needed a big guy. Could have went with a center like Camby or Chandler, but I thought it was a little early for that. Gasol should be due for a nice year, as Paul discussed in his 5 on Five on Monday. I like Paul’s decision to go with the best available rather than force a big guy. Kenyon went way too early, as did Gordon. I think Randolph could be primed for a big turnaround season, but rumor has it that he is already fighting with Nate.

ROUND 4:

M. Redd, Hamilton, Iguodala, Maggette, Billups, Chandler, Abdur-Rahim, Odom (Paul), Webber (Me), Ku. Thomas, J. Terry, A. Jamison, T. Parker, Boozer, J. Crawford, J-Smoove

Analysis: Iguodala is nice, but not that early. He still isn’t going to get anymore than 10 shots a game with Iverson and Webber in that lineup. I took a chance on Webber, but I’m confident he’s going to thrive in Philly this season (if he can get his ass on the court this preseason). Josh Smith might be a nice pick, but one has to remember that this team added JJ and Marv, thus less shots to go around. Crawford's production should go down--I'd let him fall to the 6th (unless Marbury gets traded soon).

ROUND 5:

C. Paul, S. Livingston, J. Rose, A.Bogut, D. Gooden, M. Okur, R. Wallace, J. Przybilla (Me), S. Dalembert (Paul), K. Korver, J. Magloire, S. Swift, R. Alston, B. Simmons, T. Prince, J. Tinsley

Analysis: This is the round where people started to get disinterested and started watching Desperate Housewives. I have no problem with Chris Paul, but Livingston is a huge stretch. The kid barely played last season and is already hurt this year. Jalen Rose just turned 47; Gooden’s going to be pushed for minutes by Donyell and Varejao; Korver is not a 5th round talent when 3’s mean nothing; Swift may not even start; Simmons may not even start; and Tinsley gets hurt taking a shit. C’mon people! This round was also where Paul and I started to mirror picks. He wanted Przybilla badly, but had to settle on Dalembert instead (who could end up being better).

ROUND 6:

T. Murphy, B. Barry, A.Harrington, A.Walker, G. Hill, Deron Williams, Josh Howard, G. Wallace (Paul), D. Miles (Me), D. Jones, Donyell, D. Stoudamire, Mo Pete, J-Will, M. Jaric, Telfair

Analysis: Brent Barry should not be picked up at any point in the season, nevermind drafted in the 6th round. I encouraged everyone to shy away from the bong rips during the draft, but obviously very few listened. Notice Paul’s and my picks again---both took SFs with upside.

ROUND 7:

R. Davis, S. Jackson, Q-Rich, C. Mobley, M. Finley, Wally, C. Butler, B. Knight (Me), Nene (Paul), Cassell,
A.Jefferson, J. Nelson, J. Dixon, LaFrentz, McDyess, E. Griffin

Analysis: I love the Ricky Davis pick—he could end up starting for that team. Everyone gave me shit for Brevin Knight, but I kindly explained that he split time with Jason Hart all of last year and will probably do the same with Felton this year. I don’t quite understand taking Jameer there, especially with guys like Mike James, Felton, and TJ Ford still on the board. That Dixon pick could really payoff if he gets the run he deserves.

ROUND 8:

E. Curry, McCants, M. Miller, Dampier, P. Brown, L. Wright, M. Daniels, M. James (Paul), Kwame (Me), J. James, J. Childress, P. Brezec, B. Cardinal, D. Mason, J. Posey, B. Haywood

Analysis: My God Matt, PJ Brown? Why not take Wright, Kwame, Kenny Thomas, or anyone else there? You know Anderson and West are gonna hound his old ass for minutes. I was shocked that Kwame fell to me here, as I fully expect him to have a solid season under the Zen Master. Jerome James was a disgusting pick and John should be shot for that. And Cardinal? The only person in their right mind who would take Cardinal in any 9 round draft is Cardinal himself. Haywood could turn out to be a double-double guy with 2+ blocks.

ROUND 9:

Felton, Marvin Williams, Ke. Thomas, Sura, L. Deng, Boykins, Stackhouse, Ja. Jones (me), JR Smith (Paul), E. Jones, Dunleavy, TJ Ford, I.Diogu, T. Hudson, Radmanovic, Harpring

Analysis: I love the classic “I can’t wait to go to bed picks”: Sura, E. Jones, Hudson, & Harpring. I got some shit for taking James Jones over Raja Bell, but I really think he could flourish with a point guard like Nash. Plus Bell is an Allan Houston-type and no one has any need for a player like that. JR Smith was a really nice pick, but he also doesn’t do much besides score. I love Dunleavy that late, same with Radmanovic.


Here’s how the teams shaped up:

Sean May’s Titties: Garnett, D. Howard, Okafor, J-Smoove, C. Paul, Telfair, RD, Haywood, Felton

meatNormous: LBJ, Bosh, Big Ben, Crawford, Livingston, Jaric, S. Jackson, Posey, Marv

Bob Loblaw: TD, A. Miller, Hughes, Boozer, Rose, J-Will, Q, Mason, Ke. Thomas

majerle’s heroes: Kobe, B. Miller, Shard, Parker, Bogut, Mo-Pete, Mobley, Cardinal, Sura

Danker Nuggets: Dirk, Brand, Z, Jamison, Gooden, Mighty Mouse, Finley, Brezec, Deng

Analrapists (real creative name): Marion, Peja, Manu, Terry, Okur, Donyell, Wally, Childress, Boykins

AsianSensations: T-Mac, R. Allen, JJ, Ku. Thomas, Sheed, D. Jones, C. Butler, J. James, Stack

Amanda Duke (Me-this was a girl from our high school, trust me it’s funny): Wade, VC, Gasol, Webber, Przybilla, Miles, Brevin, Kwame, James Jones

Phrenetic Phenoms (Paul): AK-47, Bibby, Carmelo, Odom, Dalembert, G. Wallace, Nene, M. James, JR Smith

The Nasty Professors: Amare, BD, RJ, SAR, Korver, Josh Howard, Cassell, Daniels, E. Jones (my apologies for ripping on any of his picks as he was in Thailand)

Buh’s Ballers: AI, Ridnour, Hinrich, Chandler, Magloire, D. Williams, Al Jeff, L. Wright, Dunleavy

Madefromrealpanther: Jermaine, Kidd, J-Rich, Billups, Swift, G. Hill, Jameer, PJ, TJ Ford (haha, who has a team with a PJ and a TJ. All he needs is DJ Tanner)

Slam Dank: Pierce, Artest, Kenyon, Maggette, Alston, Toine, Dixon, Dampier, Diogu

Jon Crotty’s Balls: Arenas, Marbury, Camby, Iguodala, Simmons, Harrington, LaFrentz, M. Miller, Hudson

The FRANCHISE: Nash, Yao, Gordon, Rip, Prince, Barry, McDyess, McCants, Radman

Magic Miller’s: Shaq, Francis, Randolph, Redd, Tonsley, Murphy, Griffin, Curry, Harpring

All in all not a terrible draft, but certainly managers could have done better. Paul and I will keep you updated as to how we're faring each week. Remember to go set up your five categories sooner rather than later.

11 Comments:

At 5:21 PM, Blogger Ryan Kinkade said...

What's up Anthony, your pal Ryan here... you're team looks pretty good. Man, I just did a draft for a competitive league with a friend who thinks he's the "know-it-all" for Fantasy Bball. He thinks I have the 10th best team out of 12th... let me tell you.. I got Dwight Howard in the 4th, Godzybilla in the 7th, and C-Webb in the 9th. I see they all went much earlier in your draft, which gives me a warm feeling inside for my team. This guy said Howard is "trash". Anyways, I also got Arenas at point, TMac at 2, and choice between Rafer/Deron WIll./Mike James for 3rd Guard. SF - Antawn Jamison, PF - Dwight, F - C Webb, Centers - Ben Wallace and Pryzbilla.

Can you imagine a team like that EVER finishing 10th?? But ya, nice draft recap, I think next week after I finish my 4 midterm in 4 day stretch I'll probably write up a draft recap of my own for http://www.kevingarnettsource.blogspot.com

I'll let you know when I do if you wanna check it out. Take it easy man.

 
At 8:12 PM, Blogger Anthony Peretore said...

Hey Ry,
Yeah, I'd recommend stop participating in fantasy leagues with Ricky Williams' friends. Your team looks dope, and I see no way how you're not one of the favorites to take home the crown. Let us know how your next draft goes and I'll be sure to check out your recap. I can't remember if we linked you yet, so if not I'll take care of it now. Peace

 
At 9:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

here's the explanation: most white people don't like the nba. it's not that they don't like basketball, because they gladly follow college basketball, at least at tourney time. at my workplace, all we do is talk sports. year round, the main conversation is football. but the only people who talk nba are me and the few black guys. i find it stunning, and disappointing, but true.

sjg.

 
At 9:13 PM, Blogger asdf said...

i think you answered your own question pretty well concerning why more people don't get excited for the fantasy nba. it's a lot more work then football, even if it is only 28.34 seconds a day. plus when i did yahoo leagues, trying to get all the different stats to complement each other was just too damn hard and confusing. so i usually quit. last year i didn't even do it. i'm going to go with one team this year though. with football i do as many as possible.

 
At 9:41 PM, Blogger Ryan Kinkade said...

Awesome... thanks for the site link. I linked you guys to mine too, I hope you like the subtitle I used.

 
At 2:23 AM, Anonymous Kuan_thing said...

Wade might be the future Russell who was against Jordan who's now compared with LBJ

 
At 4:17 AM, Anonymous the sockk said...

gooden was pulling minutes at the 5 against the grizzlies tonight. i think that that is going to happen a bit.

 
At 8:57 AM, Blogger Anthony Peretore said...

Question for all of you...
What type of fantasy news/updates/info would you most want to see on the site this year? It's hard to be very original when it comes to fantasy, so any input you could provide me with is much appreciated.

Kuan, I'm not sure what your statement actually meant. Russell stopped playing in 1969, six years after MJ was born. So they never went "against" one another. If you are talking in terms of recognition as the greatest player in the game...actually I have no idea what the hell you mean. Please explain

 
At 11:23 AM, Blogger Paul Benedict said...

I'm thinking he might have been referring to Bryon Russell, and saying that Wade will be to LeBron what Bryon Russell was to MJ? Either way Kuan, stay off the drugs.

 
At 6:05 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anthony, as far as fantasy basketball stuff updates that you could do, I always thought the best thing to be reported were the waiver-wire guys expected to play well for a week or so. Like a marginal guy who always lights up a certain team and he plays them twice in a week. That's what I'd like, someone you could suggest to just pick up and throw into your lineup for a few games. Plus, like your regular season picks, it would give you a lot of Eric Karabell-ish credibility if you picked a couple of good ones.

Anyway, nice job with the Houston article. I check the site once a day and usually more than that to go back and look at those awesome pictures of Antoine's shimmy.

Great job guys.

-Robb.

 
At 9:57 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey...

im new to the site but it looks as though Buh's Ballers has an amazing team. He looks basically unbeatable in 3 categories and will probably win the whole league!!!! whoever that kid is is a genius

 

Post a Comment

<< Home