By CASEY CANNON
Hello and welcome to the Soccer By Ives Fantasy Report, now in 3D! Every week during the MLS season we will look to make this the best source for fantasy soccer analysis anywhere outside of Singapore.
Today you have three tasks to complete.
Assignment One: go to http://fantasy.mlssoccer.com/ and build your account. Give over some of that delicious personal data -no Facebook required this year – log in and look around. Make sure to sign into The Official SBI League (The League Code is 7655-1695) Go ahead and pick some players. Don’t worry, picking fantasy players during the winter is like going to coffee with a new girl after a horrendous breakup: nobody is committed. The official lock in date for rosters is March 2nd. Right now it’s just playing the field to get an idea of what might work – or just horde defenders from Seattle and Houston.
Often early season picks feel painful. Sure we take our best guess but how can we know what is going to happen in a new season. Every year it’s possible that the fine people of Toronto will get the quality team they deserve. More likely historical trends from last year will continue. That means the only way to make educated picks early in the season is to do research before the March 2nd deadline. How much work do you need to put in? Want to win a fancy trip? Get a spreadsheet ready on the computer. Want to win the Section 8 league? Flip though some web pages at your leisure.
Assignment Two: go to http://www.mlssoccer.com/stats/team and do research. What teams played the best defense on the road and which ones hemorrhaged goals? What teams celebrated goals at home and which ones left the home fans wanting? Which players got a card a game and who won the Golden boot? (Wondo). This information will come in handy for the third assignment.
Assignment Three: come back next time for thoughts on making team based picks and the scoring rules. There is more to the game than just picking Wondo every week. For instance, let’s consider Landon Donovan. After significant analysis there are three possibilities upon Landon’s return.
1. Landon comes back out of shape and missing his touch. Hordes of fantasy players dump him after his second horrific week. Around week 12 Landon makes a couple assists and we all think maybe next week we might pick him up. The next game he scores four and the stampede is on.
2. A rested and happy Landon returns to MLS. He reveals himself as the radiant love child of Messi and Marta. He deftly dances through defenders like Sailor Moon flitting to and fro while gracefully defeating the tentacle monster. After scoring five goals in Seattle the entire Sounder back line kneels before his majesty. Then in unison they commit seppuku in front of thirty thousand European Like chanting fans. Slowly their blood pools on the dirty plastic surface. Landon smiles and looks south towards Azteca.
3. Fat Landon