We’ve talked a lot about what you should do in your fantasy basketball league, but what are some things you should avoid doing?
- Buy high, sell low
You should never buy high or sell low on players. Unless there is an injury problem, players drafted within the first few rounds will generally come around to produce about their career averages (with only a few exceptions).
- Draft rookies too high
Do not draft rookies too high; they generally underachieve and the upside gain is never worth the struggles that they face the first year (for an example, look at the top 10 picks in this past year’s draft).
- Draft too many players from one team
Try not to draft too many players from one team (especially if this is just your favorite team). There are never enough touches to warrant having 4-5 players on an actual NBA team on your fantasy team (the Phoenix Suns are attempting to disprove this). Also, there will be large fluctuations for these players. When the team is playing well, generally a few of these players will be doing well. However, when the team is losing, generally all of these players will be doing poorly. In Roto leagues, you may be able to sustain this. In H2H leagues, you probably will not. Also, if it is your favorite team, you will not want to drop players and will hold them for too long.
- Ignore certain teams, players
Never ignore certain players on teams just because they are losing. All teams will have at least 1 player who is very fantasy worthy. See Al Jefferson, Minnesota Timberwolves.
- Try to win in the short run
As hard as it is for a fantasy manager, he or she should not overemphasize the short run. The beauty of fantasy basketball is that league standings are volatile and players are streaky. The key thing to remember is that if you’re doing everything else right (drafting well, picking up and dropping players that are either vastly improving or underperforming, following individual player news, etc.), you should be in pretty good standing in your league. If for whatever reason you’re team is middle-of-the-pack (5—7th place in a 12 team league), you should not try to compensate for this by making a hasty transaction.
- Try to win every category in H2H leagues, Neglect certain categories in Rotisserie leagues
Unless you have an amazing fantasy team, chances are you will be weak in a few of your league’s categories. This is okay in H2H leagues. Generally, a manager should not try to overstretch his or her team in a H2H league by trying to do well across all categories. The beauty of H2H leagues is that once you get into the playoffs, a win is a win, whether it is 9-0-0, 5-4-0 or even 2-1-6. Focus on your strengths, accentuate those and forgot about categories you may never win. I like to focus on 6 categories at minimum. In a Rotisserie league, however, consistency is the name of the game. A 1 (out of 12) in the turnovers category will hurt your team and low standing in %’s will hurt your team, as well. In a Rotisserie league, ensure from the start that you are not neglecting certain categories—it may be too difficult to recover in those categories later on in the season.
- Let personal feelings of a player influence a decision
Let’s be honest, each of us loves certain players and despises others (the same can be said about teams, as described in point #3). The personal emotions that we attach to a particular player or team should never influence our decision on whether to add, drop or continue on with a certain player. Drop your favorite player if he is sucking.
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Mike and Farid