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Thoughts on tanking and future draft picks

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Re: Thoughts on tanking and future draft picks

Postby Matthias » Sat Nov 22, 2008 8:44 pm

TomBrooklyn wrote:
Matthias wrote:If, during next year's draft, owners want to swap picks for the same draft for whatever reason (say someone's 1st and 5th for someone else's 2nd and 3rd) then that's perfectly fine.
As a related aside, how do you work a draft pick trade on an automated draft system like ESPN has, which doesn't make any provision (I don't think) for trading draft picks.

Announce the trade. The two teams draft players that the other person specifies once the pick rolls around. And then you sort out the rosters after the draft.
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Re: Thoughts on tanking and future draft picks

Postby The Lung » Sun Nov 23, 2008 12:01 am

As long as the trades are not so outrageously lopsided so as to suspect collusion, they should be permitted. I simply cannot imagine a keeper league or dynasty league that did not allow trading of future draft picks. I would never be a participant in such a league, as they are an essential component of keeper / dynasty leagues.
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Re: Thoughts on tanking and future draft picks

Postby Matthias » Sun Nov 23, 2008 12:57 am

Yah, and I would never be a part of a league that permitted it. It has nothing to do with collusion; it just has to do with power becoming overly concentrated in one team in one year.
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Re: Thoughts on tanking and future draft picks

Postby The Lung » Sun Nov 23, 2008 2:00 am

One of the absolute joys of being in a dynasty league is weighing the decision between building a team for the future vs. making a one-year run. I honestly cannot imagine leagues that deprive owners of that experience.

Matthias, on a personal note, based on your outlook on trades, as well as not allowing the trading of future draft picks, you and I seem to have very very different ideas about how fantasy football leagues should be run. It seems like your top priority as a commissioner is ensuring absolute balance in the league, at the cost of restricting owners' freedoms.

As a commissioner, it's not my job to disallow owners from making trades I might not personally make. If managers want to make trades that I personally think are not of equal value, that is their prerogative. Who am I to be the sole judge of player's worth? If managers want to trade away a player for an early 1st round draft pick in next year's rookie draft, I don't stop them. One team loses a player's contributions for this year but builds for the future. The other team gets a good player but makes sacrifices on future young talent.

As your favorite writer Mark St. Amant would say,

It's not my job to "protect" a grown man who unfortunately rode the short bus to the trade negotiation.


;-D
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Re: Thoughts on tanking and future draft picks

Postby flotsamnjetsam » Sun Nov 23, 2008 3:23 am

The Lung wrote:One of the absolute joys of being in a dynasty league is weighing the decision between building a team for the future vs. making a one-year run. I honestly cannot imagine leagues that deprive owners of that experience.

Matthias, on a personal note, based on your outlook on trades, as well as not allowing the trading of future draft picks, you and I seem to have very very different ideas about how fantasy football leagues should be run. It seems like your top priority as a commissioner is ensuring absolute balance in the league, at the cost of restricting owners' freedoms.

As a commissioner, it's not my job to disallow owners from making trades I might not personally make. If managers want to make trades that I personally think are not of equal value, that is their prerogative. Who am I to be the sole judge of player's worth? If managers want to trade away a player for an early 1st round draft pick in next year's rookie draft, I don't stop them. One team loses a player's contributions for this year but builds for the future. The other team gets a good player but makes sacrifices on future young talent.

As your favorite writer Mark St. Amant would say,

It's not my job to "protect" a grown man who unfortunately rode the short bus to the trade negotiation.


;-D




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Re: Thoughts on tanking and future draft picks

Postby Matthias » Sun Nov 23, 2008 9:35 am

The Lung wrote:One of the absolute joys of being in a dynasty league is weighing the decision between building a team for the future vs. making a one-year run. I honestly cannot imagine leagues that deprive owners of that experience.

The baseball league and the football league that I run are both keeper. There's a strong incentive to build to the future, and I encourage it. However, a league also needs limits, and that's why people spend time considering how many keepers are they going to allow and what sort of restrictions (number, years, draft round) are they going to place on them? Because people want the owners who have prepared for the future to have an edge, but they also want enough variation that the league is at least interesting for everyone. And the problem I have with trading draft picks is that it completely circumvents any sort of keeper restriction that you put in.

It also means that if people really start trading draft picks, you would need to completely sell out in order to compete in any given year. Otherwise you would be in the position of one owner who, for whatever reason, wasn't that interested this year, trading all of his top draft choices to someone else for their top 6 draft picks next year. Now all of a sudden there's 10 teams who had draft picks in Rounds 1-18, 1 team who had no picks from the first 6, and one guy who had 2 picks in Round 1, 2 picks in Round 3, 2 picks in Round 4, 2 picks in Round 5, 2 picks in Round 6, and normal picks after that. I know people on this site like the rugged tough talk ("You just gotta buckle up and try harder to beat him!") but really to allow that to happen is just stupid. If I couldn't win a league where I got two (or maybe more, maybe I swung even more deals) picks in the early rounds to everyone else's one, then I shouldn't be in a serious league. And after people catch on that's how you win a championship, that would become just about the only road there. If that's what you're trying to encourage, hey, have a blast. I try to encourage people being smart in who they draft in the years before and then being smart in who they choose to draft in the current year and letting the person who does that the best win the league.

Now, part of our difference may be because you're coming at it from a dynasty league, which I've never played in. If you have 12 teams and every team keeps 10 players so the top 120 players are already off of the board before the draft begins, and you're basically only drafting rookies, then I wouldn't care as much. Because there the draft would play a much smaller role than in a normal league.
The Lung wrote:Matthias, on a personal note, based on your outlook on trades, as well as not allowing the trading of future draft picks, you and I seem to have very very different ideas about how fantasy football leagues should be run. It seems like your top priority as a commissioner is ensuring absolute balance in the league, at the cost of restricting owners' freedoms.

Every rule ever made restricts some sort of freedom: that's the raison d'être of the whole thing. I'm interested in sensible rules that create an environment where the person who has been the best judge of player talent, now and in the future, has the best chance to win. I do not want to see anyone do well because they're gaming the system or exploiting a loophole. So the type of freedoms I encourage are investing in players who you think are going to do well. The type of freedoms I discourage are formalistic: the freedom to tank an entire season by trading away a roster for an over-loaded roster next year. The first type of freedom is IMO what fantasy sports are about: who can do the better research; who can better predict how depth charts are going to work out; who can better predict if a team is really going to dedicate to the run or the pass in any given year. The second type of freedom is freedom for the sake of itself. It's the freedom to take a crap in a swimming pool because you want to do so at that moment. And honestly, I'd rather ban underwater crapping than have to clear everyone else out of the water because we have a floater.
The Lung wrote:As a commissioner, it's not my job to disallow owners from making trades I might not personally make. If managers want to make trades that I personally think are not of equal value, that is their prerogative. Who am I to be the sole judge of player's worth? If managers want to trade away a player for an early 1st round draft pick in next year's rookie draft, I don't stop them. One team loses a player's contributions for this year but builds for the future. The other team gets a good player but makes sacrifices on future young talent.

As your favorite writer Mark St. Amant would say,

It's not my job to "protect" a grown man who unfortunately rode the short bus to the trade negotiation.
;-D

Actually, as one of my favorite writers (myself) has said:
My point is that people, when asked these questions, tend to over-personalize them. "I have had X trade vetoed and it really sucked" or, "In my league, I would never veto this trade" when the truth is, these questions aren't being asked in the context of your/my team or your/my league. They're being asked in the context of a league that, until we ask the OP about, we don't know. I'm all for letting people make their own decisions and live with their own mistakes or reap their own rewards. But until we have a little bit of more info on the league and people involved, we don't really know if that's probably what's happening or if it's more likely that two people are colluding.

All my opinions on trades are opinions on trades that do not happen in my leagues. If they did, my opinion would be different.

As far as your player for draft pick story goes, I'm not policing whether or not Player X is worth a draft choice: that's not at all what I'm doing or saying. What I'm policing is whether or not a league is set up so that it lacks controls. You obviously like the idea of having a league where you would be essentially required to sell off one year in order to win the next. Me, I don't. I would rather reward someone who actually knows football and wants to compete every year.

The virtue which you're rewarding is the virtue of giving up. The virtue which I'm rewarding is the virtue of being prepared and always fighting. We're just coming at it from different philosophies.
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Re: Thoughts on tanking and future draft picks

Postby The Lung » Sun Nov 23, 2008 10:02 am

Matthias wrote:Now, part of our difference may be because you're coming at it from a dynasty league, which I've never played in. If you have 12 teams and every team keeps 10 players so the top 120 players are already off of the board before the draft begins, and you're basically only drafting rookies, then I wouldn't care as much. Because there the draft would play a much smaller role than in a normal league.


Yes, that is primarily the background I am coming from. In dynasty leagues, next year's draft picks means 2009 NFL rookies and free agents that aren't in the top 200 of anyone's rankings. (12 teams x rosters of 20+ players)

You obviously like the idea of having a league where you would be essentially required to sell off one year in order to win the next.


That does not happen in dynasty leagues. Maybe that would happen in keeper leagues where managers only keep a few players, but I've seen no proof of even that.

The virtue which you're rewarding is the virtue of giving up. The virtue which I'm rewarding is the virtue of being prepared and always fighting. We're just coming at it from different philosophies.


Again, the "giving up" does not result in the catastrophic imbalance in dynasty leagues that you may think it does. The team receiving a player this year does not automatically get the easy road to win the league championship. The team receiving next year's draft pick or draft picks does not become a powerhouse for years to come.
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Re: Thoughts on tanking and future draft picks

Postby Matthias » Sun Nov 23, 2008 10:08 am

The Lung wrote:
Matthias wrote:Now, part of our difference may be because you're coming at it from a dynasty league, which I've never played in. If you have 12 teams and every team keeps 10 players so the top 120 players are already off of the board before the draft begins, and you're basically only drafting rookies, then I wouldn't care as much. Because there the draft would play a much smaller role than in a normal league.

Yes, that is primarily the background I am coming from. In dynasty leagues, next year's draft picks means 2009 NFL rookies and free agents that aren't in the top 200 of anyone's rankings. (12 teams x rosters of 20+ players)

If that's the available draft class, and you're keeping 20 anyway, then I wouldn't object to trading draft picks.

But on the other side of the coin, you should see how in a league where you only kept say 3 or even worse, in a redraft league, why you should either be disallowed from trading draft picks or any draft pick that you trade for should count as one of your keepers.
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Re: Thoughts on tanking and future draft picks

Postby JasonSeahorn » Sun Nov 23, 2008 10:29 am

For the "not having continual powerhouses" thing, one of my leagues tried to solve that by having a limit on how many future picks you can acquire. We can only get up to 3 new picks for next year's draft. (The number of picks can of course be changed as you see fit/feel comfortable with...we toyed with 2 and 3, and we settled for 3).

It's not perfect but we tried to figure out a way to solve the problem Matthias brought up, and I think it's doing an okay job of it so far.
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Re: Thoughts on tanking and future draft picks

Postby spodog » Mon Nov 24, 2008 6:19 pm

TomBrooklyn wrote:As a related aside, how do you work a draft pick trade on an automated draft system like ESPN has, which doesn't make any provision (I don't think) for trading draft picks.


Tom - the answer is you switch to a better provider.
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