I’m sitting here at the airport in Las Vegas, and unlike that killer flick The Hangover, I actually remember what I did my entire time here (and for those of you that saw the movie, no, I’m not wearing my jock strap right now). For those of you who didn’t read my previous post, and shame on you if you didn’t because it was one hell of a read (Vegas Baby!), I’m in Las Vegas, not just to get my swerve on, though I cannot confirm or deny that something like that did or did not happen, but to help facilitate the National Fantasy Football Championship (NFFC). Here are some of my thoughts on my time at the event.
* I saw two leagues where guys drafted three consecutive wide receivers in the first three rounds in 14-team leagues. The leagues are point-per-reception with a bit of a twist – RBs only receive 0.5 points per catch while WR/TE/QB receive a full point. I know there is a RBBC in something like 50 percent of the backfields anymore leading to even more value at the wide receiver position, but I still think it takes a lot of guts to pass on backs until round four in such a deep league. I’ll keep an eye on how that strategy works out.
* It was great to meet the fans and to get a chance to interact face-to-face instead of just through email or instant messaging. If you can believe it, and I’m not making this up, I ran into a guy who literally lives on my block back in California. How is that even possible, that I traveled all the way to Sin City and ran into a guy who literally lives 1000 feet from me down the street? That’s just crazy.
* James Davis – welcome to fantasy relevance. Reports continue to swirl out of Cleveland that Jamal Lewis is basically done. In fact, there was fairly widespread speculation that Lewis might actually be cut because of the money he is due this season. Wasn’t it just a month ago that Jerome Harrison was all the rage? Well, Harrison was hurt (leg) and into that void Davis has clearly asserted himself. By mid-season we might be looking at Lewis either being on the street or operating as the third choice out of that backfield. Davis was clearly one of those players who was drafted much earlier than his ADP value over the weekend.
* Who had the idea of starting a mecca of pleasure like Vegas in the desert? I mean it was like 106 degrees during the day, who needs that?
* Drew Brees and Tom Brady seemed to be going early, somewhere in the 9-14 range, and then there was a good 10-15 selection spread before we saw Peyton Manning go off the board. I wouldn’t take any of the three that early, but if I was of that ilk I would certainly prefer Manning at the end of the second than the “B” boys at the end of the first.
* I had no idea that the Flamingo had a clothing optional pool (that’s where the event took place – not at the nudie pool, but at the hotel). I’ll never say a bad word about the Flamingo again.
* Someone, hello law enforcement, needs to get those guys off the street that try to hand you those little “hey I’m cute, call me for a good time” cards. Everyone knows you can find that stuff in Vegas, after all it is called Sin City, but I don’t want to slip on those Zerva that Magnificent cards on the sidewalk when I’m walking around in a drunken stupor late at night. Oops, I mean I don’t want drunk people to slip on all those discarded cards.
* Last year we gave away about $850,000 in the event. Yeah, that’s nearly a million dollars in prizes awarded to the hundreds of people that participated (the grand prize is $100,000).
* Totally off topic, but I was utterly shocked to see so many babies in Vegas. Walking around the strip on Saturday night it seemed like every 15th person was a mother pushing a stroller with a kid in it. I don’t know about you, but I think I would wait to introduce my child to “Sin City” until they were at least old enough to vote.
So there are a couple of thoughts from the event in Vegas (it was held simultaneously in Chicago and New York as well). Good luck to everyone who participated, and for those of you who didn’t, the National Fantasy Baseball Championship is a mere seven months away. Now I gotta shut off this computer and get on the plane. Is it just me or do you miss getting those peanuts or pretzels on the plane? I know the economy has taken a bit of a downturn, but really, I can’t get me a free bag of some nuts on the place? I mean, what do they cost, 25 cents?
By Ray Flowers