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Friday 19th Jan 2018

OK, so I have an idea. Truth of the matter is I get tons of ideas but most of them get buried in a folder on my desktop called “Yeah Right.” The thing about this one is it was supposed to be a joke but a couple of guys think it actually has legs. Not just a couple of guys – a couple of guys in the fantasy industry that are pretty tuned into the landscape.

It came about at the Fantasy Sports Trade Association football draft last month. As Lawr detailed, we had the first pick. The order was drawn about 15 minutes previous to when we were on the clock so we didn’t have a lot of time to talk about who we wanted. We quickly decided we didn’t want Peyton Manning, Calvin Johnson or Jimmy Graham, which left a running back. There are four ball-carriers that can be a defensible top choice: Matt Forte, Jamaal Charles, Adrian Peterson and LeSean McCoy. Who we took and why along with the relative merits of each aren’t important; they’ll be plenty of time to talk about that. What is important is what I off-handedly uttered to my co-manager with my tongue firmly implanted in my cheek.

"Geez, I sort of wish we could pick a quarter share of each."

I told the story to a couple of guys at the FSTA conference, not to pitch the idea but rather to demonstrate how close the call is and how all of the four are viable options. They both said forget that, the idea was genius. Well, they may not have said genius but I need practice spelling the word properly and this was a good time to use it. Suffice it to say they both pushed me to seriously consider the notion. One, Fantasy Sport Network’s Nando DiFino threatened to pick up the ball and run with it if I fumbled. See what I did there?

The concept is a draft (most logically football but it could work for baseball) where you could pick partial shares of the player and the scoring would be adjusted to account for the percentage you own. So if quarter shares were allowed, Lawr and I could have actually done what I jokingly suggested and picked up a 25 percent share of Forte, Charles, Peterson and McCoy.

Obviously there's a ton of details that would need to be hammered out, not the least of which is a person goofy enough to organize and administer such a monster since there isn’t a commissioner service equipped to handle the format. The person would have to be pretty adept with spreadsheets and know enough people to recruit league members.

OK, I’ll do it.

At this point, the only rule that is set-in-stone is you can draft partial shares of players and those shares are available until 100 percent of the player is chosen. Past that, everything is on the table. I have some ideas (some rather obvious, some a bit more creative) but if the idea has legs, we can take it to the Mastersball forum and discuss the rules.

So, what do you think? Does the ability to pick 25 percent of Matt Forte, 25 percent of Calvin Johnson, 25 percent of Jimmy Graham and 25 percent of Payton Manning with the top pick pique your interest?

I’ll tell you what. Post a note in the comments or drop me a line and if we have ample feedback, we’ll take it to the message board so I can move this one into the “About Damned Time" folder. If we can come up with some rules, I’ll set it up and run the league from the site.



0 #10 Al Geelhaar 2014-07-16 05:24
I checked with MyFantasyLeague. They do allow players to be owned by multiple teams, but don't allow the same player to be owned more than once by the same team. They do allow large roster sizes. May be worth setting up a free trial league to see if it looks like it would work. If so, maybe try doing a 2-copy and 3-copy league?
0 #9 Todd Zola 2014-07-15 14:24
I'll run the piece on Fantasy Alarm to drum up more interest then we can take the rules discussion to the next level. The good news s we're discussing rules and I'm not defending the concept in general ;)
0 #8 Al Geelhaar 2014-07-15 04:42
Ideally waivers should also be fractional, if the draft is fractional. Otherwise, it's inconsistent, as you note with Foles. I don't know the details, but I would think the current software pickup logic should be able to work with little or no modification (with the wholes model). I don't see it resulting in less players being picked up. If there are 10 worthwhile guys to be added in a week, those 10 would probably wind up being picked up (as 40 transactions). The rosters would have 60 spots instead of 15 spots, so there's lots of room for adds.

For trading, I think fractional shares (or individual copies in the wholes model) should be tradeable, again to be consistent with the premise.
0 #7 Al Geelhaar 2014-07-15 04:26
The draft would take forever whether using fractions or wholes. With fractions, you're picking 4 entities on your turn - whether they be 4 quarters of 1 guy, 1 quarter of 4 guys, or some other combination adding up to one full share. That takes the same amount of time as if you're drafting wholes, in aggregate. If you wanted to have the ability to draft all of a guy in the wholes model, you could say each team gets 4 picks before it moves to the next team.

Basically, I think they are, or could be functionally the same. It's just that I suspect that most folks would find it easier to deal with whole numbers than fractions. Scoring would also be more straightforward (i.e. no division of points). And as I noted, at least one site (I think maybe MFL?) already has in place the ability to allow a guy to be drafted (and added?) multiple times.
0 #6 Todd Zola 2014-07-14 15:05
Al's comment about the draft taking forever led me to believe one player would be taken at a time so the ability to get all four shares of anyone is basically impossible.

Or two if he played halvsies with everyone though the wheel pick could double up.
0 #5 Mike Lewis 2014-07-14 13:36
I think the idea was that you could then own more than one of the four available copies of a player, so if you had two of the four Peyton Mannings you could trade one of them for one of someone else.
0 #4 Todd Zola 2014-07-14 07:40
Waivers would have to be all or nothing otherwise it would be too much to administer OR the league gets together and has a live waiver draft every week.

The problem I see is if four can own Peyton Manning, then four should be able to own this seasons Nick Foles -- the QB that comes out of nowhere.

Either way, at the end the results are going to be the same -- do we divide by four at the beginning or multiply everything by 4 and use that.

With waivers, i think allowing four people to own a full share of a player would really cut down on the number of players taken.

Here's an advantage with fractions -- I own 50% of a player -- I can trade 25% of him for 25% of another.

if this thing ever happens, we can debate each method and vote - then make the rules accordingly.

I'm going to post it at Fantasy Alarm to see if any of that crowd may be interested.

keep the comments coming -- I'm honestly open to anything -- I may seem defensive but that's only b/c thus far I still prefer fractions - maybe I'm wrong.
0 #3 Mike Lewis 2014-07-14 07:23
A benefit of Al's suggestion would be that FAAB or waivers or whatever you're using would be a lot more straightforward. Otherwise you either have to not do midseason pickups or you have to deal with things like me picking up 50% of each of two guys and then you with a slightly worse waiver priority picking up 50% of one other guy and 50% of one guy I asked for, except that my pick only left 25% available, so now what do you do? Do you get as much of him as is available and then you have an empty quarter player on your roster, do you not get him at all, does it invalidate your waiver claim completely, or something else? If you say there are 4 copies of each player, waivers are a lot more straightforward.
0 #2 Todd Zola 2014-07-14 03:41
It's all negotiable -- just keep in mind what one's neurons and synapses considers simpler and more easily supported may not seem as simple and easy to another (read - i think with proper administration the fractions would be easier but I'm wired a bit differently, to say the least.)
0 #1 Al Geelhaar 2014-07-14 03:02
I like the concept, but I think a simpler (and more easily-supported) variation would be to allow each player to be drafted multiple times, and to expand the weekly starting lineups and roster sizes. I think there is already at least one site that, in the setup, allows you to specify how many times any player can be taken. So, to accomplish the "quarter shares", you could just say all players can be taken 4 times. Then have the starting lineup be 4 QBs, 8 RBs, etc. Not sure any site supports that large a starting lineup or roster, but it would seem easily done. The most significant downside that I can see is that the draft would take 4 times as long. Free agent adds would also be more complicated.

A compromise and perhaps more palatable format might be allowing each player to be taken only twice.

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