Perhaps the title of the post is a little harsh, but Bill Simmons today posted a piece on ESPN.com about how to change fantasy basketball for the better. Personally, I think fantasy basketball is great as it is and has no more/less inconsistencies than other fantasy sports.
He does make some solid points:
- Giving double weight to points, rebounds and assists, since those determine and actually valuable player more than percentages, etc. (I assume he’s referring to head-to-head leagues in this article, not standard roto leagues)
- Having a budget and a blind auction for free agents. Hardly a novel idea, auction baseball leagues have been doing this for years, but I’ve never done it in a basketball league and it’s a good system.
- Extending the fantasy playoffs into the NBA playoffs. I’m not saying every league should do this but it’s a neat little wrinkle for some leagues. Imagine pulling for the Hawks because you need Joe Johnson on your active roster for one more week.
As far as the idea that seem a little far-fetched:
- Not sure why he’s mentioning more specified positions as something new. I’ve never been in a league that didn’t break the positions into Point Guard, Shooting Guard, etc.
- Also don’t get why he thinks that owners who drafted badly will have the first crack at good early-season free agents. The waiver order should go in reverse draft order, so that’s not necessarily true. Maybe he’s making the point that owners who drafted horribly will have more candidates to cut loose early in the season.
- And I don’t agree with the opinion that you can’t recover from an injury to a franchise player in fantasy basketball. You may have to change some strategy on the fly, but it’s definitely doable.
I usually enjoy Simmons’ stuff but this piece seems a little less-wordy than his usual stuff. I have a feeling this is going to be in ESPN the Magazine and had to be shorter. Knowing his love of fantasy sports and basketball, he could have easily made 10,000 words out of this.
And, no surprise, Larry Bird is mentioned in the piece.