Monday, October 22, 2007

Fear and Loathing in FantasyLand

In an ideal world, I would like to have our League's auction on the weekend before the games starts.


1) It helps limit your exposure to inflated pre-season stats.
2) It helps limit the number of times a day you refresh Rotoworld at work, thereby ensuring your continued employment.
3) It helps limit the onset of Fantasy Basketball Fear and Loathing.

Allow me to explain. This year I finally got my act together for the auction -- no small feat considering my atrocious 2005 and 2006 results. I left Chicago (the site of this year's auction) feeling content, optimistic, and slightly, if prematurely, cocky.

Here's NeverWon's roster as currently constructed:

Raymond Felton

(Cha - PG,SG)

Manu Ginobili
(SA - SG)

Paul Pierce
(Bos - SG,SF)

Josh Smith
(Atl - SG,SF)

David Lee
(NY - SF,PF)

Josh Childress
(Atl - SG,SF)

Amare Stoudemire
(Pho - C)

Tyson Chandler
(NO - C)

Stephon Marbury
(NY - PG)

Steve Francis
(Hou - PG)

Robert Swift
(Sea - C)

Tayshaun Prince
(Det - SF)

Given the state of my core 3 (Amare, Pierce, J Smoove), my core 5 (Amare, Pierce, J Smoove, Ginobili, Chandler), and my core 8 (Amare, Pierce, J Smoove, Ginobili, Chandler, Felton, Lee, Childress) I feel relatively confident that my typically savvy in-season moves will give me the firepower to contend. For more on the concept of the "Core," click here.

But then Fantasy Basketball Fear and Loathing sets in.

It starts slowly. An article here about Robert Swift not playing the second night of back-to-backs. An article there about Steve Francis being out of shape and not grasping Rick Adelman's offence.

"But they aren't my core players" you say to anyone who will listen. It doesn't matter.

Fast forward to Saturday night at your local bar where the Flux is explaining how great his fantasy team is. Ahh, time for taking, you think!

Except then you say you Core 5 out loud.

"Josh Smith"
"Ummmmm, Ginobili?"

A steak-dinner bet later (most wins in the regular season) and you've got a case of full Fantasy Basketball Fear and Loathing.

The only balm? More Josh Smith!

That feels better. Sort of.


Best Team Ever said...

What's the point of identifying a core 5 when you already have a core 3 earmarked and a starting 8 as guidelines?

Never Won said...

It's just another way of assessing team strength. You can have a good core 3, and a good core 5 (like Flux), but a terrible starting 8.

Best Team Ever said...

Do you feel a "Core 3" is more important than a "2 Anchor" system where the two anchors are studs and the third guy is equivalent to a late 4th rounder per se?

Never Won said...

Different concepts. Two anchor is a draft strategy. Core is a way of evaluating the strength of your team relative to other teams.