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Intentional Tanking

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Intentional Tanking

Postby callmethebadguy » Wed Nov 28, 2012 2:40 pm

I am the commissioner of an 8 team league and this coming week is the last regular season week for the league, 6 teams make the playoffs and the 1 and 2 seed get a bye first round. One of the team owners(we'll call him team A) is going to start all his scrubs this week(ex. marcel reece over AP, demarco murray over ray rice) to ensure that one of the teams (team B) does not make the playoffs. He is doing this because he does not want Team B to make the playoffs bcuz he does not like him, pretty much for personal reasons. Here is the scenario:

The 1 and 2 seed have already been determined. The 3-5 seeds are all tied going into the last week and will be able to fight for seeding the final week. The 6th spot is still up for grabs. One of the teams fighting for the last playoff spot(team B) is 1 game behind the other team(team c). Team C has to face team A this final week and if Team C wins then the last playoff spot will be wrapped up and Team B does not have a chance to make the playoffs. But if Team C loses this week it opens the door for Team B to get in with a win the last regular season week.

I believe this falls under sportmanship and the integrity of the league to start your best players every week. A few of my team owners say that it's his team and he should be able to do what he wants but I don't think it is the right thing to do.

I am looking for feedback from anybody who may have ran into this predicament and how they handled it. Do you think it is fair to purposely start scrubs on your team so another team does not have a chance to get the last playoff spot. In my eyes it's like his is playing God and deciding who he wants to get into the playoffs.

Any feedback would be greatly appreciated.

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Re: Intentional Tanking

Postby jdvandy » Wed Nov 28, 2012 9:06 pm

Even though I personally believe every owner should try to win every game, this issue is difficult at best and virtually impossible to control. And there is no guarantee that intentional tanking this week will mean a sure loss for Team A. It may be unlikely but M Reece could have a record breaking day against the Browns and get a win for Team A anyway.

But beyond that, your question was how can this situation be handled? If there is no rule against an owner starting any lineup he chooses, your hands as commissioner may be tied. The one person with as much power over the situation as Team A would be Team C who could also tank the game if he chose. Although that would be doubtful since there is a playoff spot at stake.

I know that may not be the answer you were looking for and it may not provide much help in this situation but these things tend to work themselves out in the long run. Any action you try to take as commissioner without established rules to back you up could do more harm than good.
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Re: Intentional Tanking

Postby Hags888 » Sat Dec 01, 2012 2:44 pm

There is probably nothing you can do about it now, but in the future make sure your league constitution has a rule that states they must start their best players. In my league, it goes as follows:

VI. Each team in the PBFFL is required to set their starting lineup every week with what they perceive as the best available players on their roster.

This avoids a purposeful tanking, and if a team were to do that, they would face disciplinary action in my league. I will admit it's a grey area and totally subjective who the best players on a roster are. But, in the case of obvious tanking like benching known commodities like Adrian Peterson and Ray Rice for bench fodder, it's an easy call to make. So, without knowing what rules you might already have in place, it's tough to recommend a course of action. There is also an alternative viewpoint that says a team owner should be able to set their lineup however they want, even if that means purposefully taking a dive. After all, real NFL teams often sit their starters during the last week of the season if their playoff spots are clinched in order to give them extra rest. Isn't that sort of the same thing? I mean sure, NFL teams are purposefully taking a dive just to make sure one team doesn't make the playoffs, but they do sometimes put themselves at greater risk of losing. And after all, fantasy football typically tries to mimic the real NFL in many aspects, so why not this one?

There's no clear answer here, but I think you have to go with whatever league rule is already in place and live it. If you don't like the rules, then be sure to change them before next season.
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Re: Intentional Tanking

Postby shawngee03 » Tue Dec 04, 2012 1:36 pm

i would say as long as they have a player who is going to be playing in each roster spot....let it go. if you start intervening in who teams shoudl sit and start....that sets a bad precident. where do you draw the line. what if reece and murray outscore AD and rice? coudl happen. if you switched them back then what?

like i said.....a good season for a commish is one where he doesnt have to make any desicions or piss anybody off
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Re: Intentional Tanking

Postby dominationstation » Thu May 30, 2013 4:32 pm

I know I'm a bit late...

That's not dissimilar to NFL teams resting their starters. I think if you are in position to do it, then it's your team.

One thing we do to help promote competition until the last week is assign your draft order based on your finish. But it's not worst to first.

It is 5,7,8,6,3,4,2,1 (or some variation) This rewards the winners* throughout the playoffs even if you are in the consolation bracket. The idea is to give the worse teams a higher pick, but you still have to win in the final weeks to get the best picks. We actually let the players pick their draft position based on the formula above - so if you finished 5th you could have whichever draft spot you wanted and so on.
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