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2009 fantasy football new year’s resolutions

2009 new year’s resolutions

At the turn of the year most people’s thoughts are of what they had to drink and who they were with the night before (and trying not to think of the cricket 🙁 ). Fantasy coaches are also starting to think of the new football season, and the mistakes they will never make again with their AFL Dream Team and Super Coach teams.

1. I will not panic during the 160 minutes of maelstrom.
The worst of all possible outcomes is losing your team completely during the two and a half hours of mayhem that will happen between the Thursday naming of teams before round 1 at 5pm and the bouncedown at 7:40pm of the Carlton vs Richmond game. If this year’s shenanigans are any guide, it’s best not to mess with your team much at all in this period, as the VirtualSports servers are going to be choking under the traffic load. I have been assured that things will be better this year, though I suspect that there is a fair bit of pent up demand for Dream Team given the late start in 2008 and coach numbers are going to explode in ’09, making this 160 minutes even more chaotic than the corresponding 70 minutes in ’08.

2. I will not trade in the first two weeks.
I managed to stay strong on this one this year, though I suppose if you were unlucky enough to have Scott Lucas in your starting squad then you could have been excused for making a forced trade. Winners don’t blow trades early! Have faith in your pre-season picks. Which leads to…

3. I will try not to trade much at all in the first 6-8 weeks.
It was a prescient coach who had Rhys Palmer in his initial squad in 2008, with most picking him up after round 3. Apart from getting Palmer and dealing with the inevitable injuries, though, top-ranked fantasy teams didn’t trade all that often in the first third of the season. Holding off on trading early is possibly the hardest thing to do in fantasy, with even the best amongst us succumbing to temptation when they just can’t stand any more low scores. Make the effort!

4. I will not get discouraged by early low scores.
As was pointed out on BigFooty recently, this year’s Dream Team wining side Convicts, coached by BradFisherman, scored only 1700 in round 1, followed by 2051 and 1776. That 2000+ score would have been very heartening, but the other two numbers might have spooked a lot of coaches into slashing their team in the hopes of securing some more consistent scoring. Relax, some of the best sides start very poorly. Convicts was filled with mid-price improvers, and perhaps more importantly his bench was scoring very well. If you have 27-30 players scoring every week then you’re setting yourself up for a barnstorming second half of the fantasy season.

5. I will not place my trust in underperforming AFL coaches.
I’m not just talking here about Dean Laidley, Fantasy Antichrist. I’m talking here about Michael Malthouse and his lack of finesse in handling Heath Shaw, which I have also blogged about before. I am also talking about Dean Bailey. I don’t trust Bailey, and I didn’t like the story that came out about him giving Chris A. Johnson the cold shoulder. Plenty of coaches will move all in with Jack Grimes and Ricky Petterd this preseason in the hope that they represent value in a position sorely lacking for genuinely dependable value. I have this sinking feeling that Bailey is going to stuff fantasy coaches around by picking the wrong players in his backline. Melbourne will probably lose their first NAB Cup game against Hawthorn, and will most likely get flogged, meaning that we won’t get to see much of their preseason at all, further adding intrigue and subterfuge to the Demons’ planning. I, for one, will be watching reports of their NAB Challenge games with great interest.

How about you, what are your new year’s resolutions? Surely there must be some of you who aren’t too hungover to tell us!



  1. Ryan

    January 1, 2009 at 1:21 pm

    Nice post Monty. I was one who suffered the early forced trade with Lucas,arrgh. Does anyone remember when the NAB record comes out with all the prices like this years??

  2. Other Dan

    January 1, 2009 at 4:14 pm

    Good read Monty, Happy New Year to all.

    How’s about;

    6. I will have at least 6 trades left for the finals.
    The aim should be really be 8. I also had Lucas last year and his early trade started the momentum with others soon following (And I had Hall as well). Lesson learned, no more early trades. And having ample trades in reserve for the finals is a must.

    Ryan – From memory I think the NAB record came out mid-February.

  3. Chad

    January 1, 2009 at 4:34 pm

    number 2 is a great rule monty. Certainly learnt that the hard way last year.

    The back rookies are really looking like slim pickings again this year. I dont know if i can trust Bailey with grimes.

  4. Ryan

    January 1, 2009 at 5:12 pm

    Ahh, cheers other Dan.Tottally agree Chad Bailey can’t be trusted, although he’s gotta play the kids surely Grimes would be in he’s thinking??

  5. Nick2

    January 2, 2009 at 12:30 am

    I slightly disagree with #2. Most of us traded in Hill early this year. Not doing so would’ve been a setback. I think the key is to avoid sideways trades of your mid-pricers and premiums. (Though in 08 there was great debate over Murphy v Jones at R2, and I kept Jones didn’t I 🙁 )

  6. the_insid3r

    January 2, 2009 at 1:33 am

    Happy New Year to everyone

    I have one resolution. Don’t read too much in to the daily hype with regards to afl players that appear on bigfooty. The overwhealming majoroty of people there talk so much shit that it does your head in and the chances of you having a good dt season.

    btw MONTY, you may not remember me, but I talked to you a few times via pm’s prior to the start of dt08 and I never had a chance to tell you this but in my mind the advice you gave me then was whats enabled me to move from finishing 20 thousand ranked player for 3 or so years to making my way in to the top 100 last year. In the end I finished 323rd overall for the season due to few poor decisions between rounds 18-22 but still an awesome improvement and all thanks to you and the one piece of advice which you gave me. thanks

    Keep up the good work mate

  7. dylan

    January 2, 2009 at 2:21 am

    mine is to not pick to many players from my own team and not to trade them in when they have 1 big game. last year i had something like 6 crows players and after goodwin got that 161 i got him in… wish i did not do that.

    another is to hold onto some trades and not use them all up by round 15

  8. m0nty

    January 2, 2009 at 12:40 pm

    Hey the_insid3r, I remember you. What was the magical piece of advice I gave? Perhaps I should pay more attention to myself, since you’ve done better than I ever have! 😀

  9. the_insid3r

    January 2, 2009 at 1:08 pm

    LOL monty!

    Lucky for you I just checked my pm’s and still have your message there so I’ll just quote you here.

    This was you response to my team (which included allot of mid priced players) I picked and asked for your opinion.

    “Dude, I used to think like you, but I’ve changed my mind after looking at the EDT blokes and their gun teams. You have to get at least two if not three rookies in your starting 22, and invest more heavily in 100 premiums.”

    And that’s exactly what I did mate. I deleted my original team I started again but this time following your advice and as a result I started the season with as many premium players as I could afford (11 or 12 premiums I managed to squeeze in) plus Palmer, Rioli, Gamble, Tippett and Geary.

  10. m0nty

    January 2, 2009 at 1:12 pm

    Well then, that was good advice… as long as you pick the right rookies, of course.

  11. Scuzzlebut

    January 2, 2009 at 1:21 pm

    My problem was that, despite my score being the highest in my league, I spent most of the year outside the 8, so towards the end of the year I had to trade recklessly just to play in the finals. This year, I’m just going to try to rank as high as I can. I will be trading for long term gain, not just to win the next game.

  12. sammy

    January 3, 2009 at 12:40 am

    I love the last few hours before the first lockout, i have my team set up and i do it just to try and cram up the server.

  13. ryz

    January 3, 2009 at 5:38 pm

    exactly the same scuzz, i never cared at all with my rankings, just wanted to give a pasting to all my mates in my league, and would cash up early to squeeze in late and win it, but this year had little trades left, and rheemed myself in the end, just missed out.

    11 or 12 premiums? what about 6? haha i got alot of mid pricers like the insider last year…but look at them more as potential keepers? no good?

  14. Nath

    January 3, 2009 at 8:06 pm

    In response to no.5, ATM I’ve decided to have Grimes/Petterd/Strauss all in my team, so I will only need 1 of those 3 to play, aslong as my other backs are playing but all my other backs would certainly be in their teams best 22, although there could be doubts about Raines.

  15. Simon

    January 4, 2009 at 9:17 pm

    There is plenty of value around this year. You just need to decide where that value is. You may need to start 7 legitimate backs and “rookie up” other positions.

    I see the problem this year coming from the value players all having a reasonable injury history…

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