Thursday, October 18, 2007

Measuring Talent

Well well well, the Cardiff Giant has finally revealed to one and all his glorious strategy for securing himself a playoff birth. We should all be better off having had this glimpse into the psyche of a delicate genuis. I mean, just look at these commandments: (1) Thou Shalt Be Consistent, (2) Thou Shalt Command Thine Offense, (3) Thou Shalt Be Unique, (4) Thou Shalt Overcome Thine Mistakes, and (5) Thou Shalt Be Secure In Thineself. Essentially the Giant One reccomends fantasy studs, for those are the masters of consistency, the ones who command offenses, are undeniably unique, learn from their mistakes, and stay healthy.

Bearing these principles in mind, let's review Cardiff's band of merry play-makers:

Allen Iverson
(Den - PG,SG)
Ray Allen
(Bos - SG)
Baron Davis
(GS - PG)
Tracy McGrady
(Hou - SG,SF)
Carlos Boozer
(Uta - PF,C)
Boris Diaw
(Pho - PF,C)
Brendan Haywood
(Was - C)
Eddy Curry
(NY - C)
Marco Belinelli
(GS - PG,SG)
Morris Peterson
(NO - SG,SF)
Jamaal Magloire
(NJ - C)
Jason Maxiell
(Det - SF,PF)

Whoa!!!! It appears that in the Cardiff's quest to heed his own advice, he neglected to stock his team with 12 solid contributors. In their stead, he has two stud guards, two former studs who now violate commandment 5 so often they may as well douche with holy water in repentence, a big man who totaled 21 blocks and 194 turnovers last season, the worst man alive (I'm looking at you Eddie) last year's largest dissappointment and 5 for Maxiell who has talent, but no real playing time as yet.

T-Mac is more injury prone than my cousin who couldn't jump on the bed as a kid because of something called "brittle bone syndrome." This is not to mention the fact that Houston's offense is less and less being run through him. And Ray Allen, one of my favorite ballers, may see his role change significantly now that he's sharing the rock with Pierce and Garnett. Seriously, their touches should eat into his numbers the same way my Aunt Carol used to feast at a Chinese buffet.

Recall that the league is an auction format with daily changes. This means that even when Cardiff has all of his players going, 2 spots are gauranteed to be filled by wastes of space. Couple this for when Baron and Tracy inevitably miss half their season with knee/back/menstral problems and the Cardiff has the makings of a failing squad. And what about the nights when his 4 players going are named Brendan, Morris, Marco and Jamaal. Should any opponent fear their numbers?

Now, let's briefly examine a team the good lord accuses of being run by someone incapable of evaluating talent: The Moop. Moop took a different strategy at the auction. While most teams busied themselves like Cardiff and over-loaded on two or three "studs," Moop sought to balance his entire team to maximize total contribution. The result:

Tony Parker
(SA - PG)
Michael Redd
(Mil - SG,SF)
Mo Williams
(Mil - PG)
Lamar Odom
Zach Randolph
(NY - PF)
Jason Richardson
(Cha - SG,SF)
Dwight Howard
(Orl - C)
Mehmet Okur
(Uta - PF,C)
Kevin Martin
(Sac - SG)
Richard Jefferson
(NJ - SF)
Brad Miller
(Sac - C)
Grant Hill
(Pho - SG,SF)

OK. So Grant Hill is going to last maybe 6 games. Pheonix obviously thinks he'll last longer. But look at the other 11. They are all ranked in Yahoo's top 100, with the majority landing between 29-71. There is no one that screams "useless" or "drop me now as I'm completely expendable." In fact, each member of Team Moop (save Hill) is fully tradeable, either on their own or packaged with a fellow Moopster.

When team Moop's president was contacted for comment about the Cardiff's remarks, he quickly replied, "Hmmmm, seems silly considering Cardiff spent most of the auction sitting around lamenting how he had no money left to buy bargain players. I guess there's never been a clearer case of someone blowing his wad so early. Is it possible to have the fantasy equivalent of penis envy AND premature ejaculation???"

The point is that there are 3 general approaches to fantasy success. First, go for the studs and, when you've run out of money, try to find enough roll players and play the waiver wire all season. Second, go the way of the Moop, avoid any real top 20 talent, but have no one on your team that you'd drop without wincing a bit. The third approach, of course, is to achieve a balance between the first two.

It is my humble submission that the team that wins it all this year is the squad that best achieves that overall balance. Too many nobodies, and you're wasting time whenever your studs aren't on the floor or they're hurt. Too many steady-eddies, and you'll miss those glorious nights when a guy like Kobe drops 50 like its nothing. Last year's winner had that balance, with guys like Dirk, Arenas, J. Smith, G. Wallace, Hinrich and Barbosa surrounded by 6 other steady contributors. This year, I humbly submit its me.


Mighty Mullets said...

Dear TheBurningSensation,

If I didn't just meet your fiance, I'd swear you were the Alpha-Dildo in Moop's perverse sex toy collection. Get a clue!


Your failure to understand this rule keeps you in Tier-2, regardless of the rumor going around that you made the playoffs last year.


Mighty Mullets

Never Won said...

Ain't that the truth MULLETS! It's like Rock Ice trying to package three dwarves and a pet rock for Kobe and then wondering why you don't pull the trigger!

Shap said...

You NEED to have a superstar to win Mr. League. It helps if you have more than one.

Moop has none.

I have two.