Fantasy Good Food Guide
Which teams are pigging out, and which teams are setting up an all-you-can-eat-smorgasbord for their opposition? Find out here. Nix tells you which teams have upcoming bookings at the best nosheries …
Tuesday. After the worst round of the year. Time for Fantasy coaches to come out from under the table, dust themselves off and start planning for the next round of matches. You’ve got less than 72 hours before the next lockout.
You don’t need me to tell you how bad last round was. Particularly those who were waiting for Captain Dayne Beams to save their butts in the last game on Monday afternoon.
However the following graph shows that it was the worst round for total fantasy points for the year. So it wasn’t just our players that spudded, there were less points scored by all players in total.
Before moving on lets look at some of the individual games of the last round. Most games total around 3,000 to 3,200 points, that is what almost always happens in the 100 minutes of game time. So the ‘pie’ in each game is roughly the same size, the 2 teams are fighting over who get the bigger slice. When one side gets a very big score, for example Port’s 1,938 points, this comes at the expense of their opposition, in this case St.Kilda’s 1,238 points.
There were 2 games with big ‘slices’:
- Port got 61% of the points, or 700 points more than St.Kilda.
- Freo got 60% of the points, or 614 points more than Adelaide.
There were 4 games where the team with more fantasy points lost the game:
- Carlton lost to Geelong,
- GWS lost to Essendon,
- Gold Coast lost to Sydney,
- Bulldogs lost to Brisbane.
- and also Melbourne were scoring more fantasy points than Collingwood for all of that game until the last quarter.
The latter group explains why the scoring was low last round. A group of normally lower scoring teams tried to stop normally higher scoring teams from playing freely. The lower scoring teams tried to keep possession and played defensive tempo football by chipping around in the backline. This strategy didn’t win the lower teams the games, but it did give them a larger share of the game’s fantasy points. The Brisbane v Bulldogs game was a bit different, in this one the Bulldogs were very conservative against the usually generous Brisbane. But the outcome was the same.
The outcome was a stuffed up weekend for many fantasy coaches.
Fantasy For and Against Tables
The updated table of average fantasy points scored and conceded by each team is below. I’ve added a couple of new columns this week.
- The points difference (Pt diff) between the For points and the Against points for each team.
- A column showing the rank on the AFL ladder for each team.
Some points of interest on the Points For side:
- Adelaide is the big loser falling out of the green group after their smashing by Freo (who took their spot).
- Essendon continues to head the table despite scoring badly against GWS and their low ladder position. They still average over 200 points per game more than their opposition.
- Hawthorn, Port and Sydney are also solid at head of table.
- Gold Coast are surprisingly low given they are in the 8.
- North is in the highest group on both sides. Even though they score a lot of points, they give away even more.
- Brisbane still on the bottom, scoring on average 260 points less than their opposition each week.
Some points of interest on the Points Against side:
- St.Kilda moved to the top of the table after their thrashing by Port. Saint giving 5.4 hundreds a week on average.
- West Coast has moved up to join Brisbane and GWS as the next most generous teams.
- Freo moved down to the middle of the table after their big win.
- Carlton has now moved into second most stingy position, and with Western Bulldogs concede less points than their positions at the bottom of the AFL ladder would suggest.
Do we need a Doggie Bag or a Packed Lunch?
That’s all very interesting, but what we really want to know is who is going to score lots in the next few weeks. Which premiums should we bring in that will go straight to the head of the table and start carving? Also which of our non-keeper players with questionable appetites might struggle when faced with a few weeks of slimmer pickings?
The following table shows which teams are likely to get extra (or less) points compared to if they played the average team.
This has changed a bit this week. Some points of interest:
- Of the highest scoring teams (green teams) newly green Freo has moved to the top. North and Sydney are still fairly high. While Port and Essendon are at the bottom.
- Collingwood is still at the bottom of the table.
- Richmond, Brisbane, Geelong and Sydney are best placed of the teams with a lot of fantasy relevant players.
These projections are applicable to both AFLFantasy and RDT. However, Fantasy coaches are more able to take advantage of changing player scoring levels, and subsequent price changes, simply because they have more trades to exploit the situation.
The Long View
I always get requests to extend the analysis for the rest of the year and the finals. See the table below.
Some points of interest:
- Adelaide is at the top with the best percentages of any team; although the Crows are a bit less attractive this week after an insipid display against Freo. They are no longer a green team.
- Collingwood, Bulldogs, Geelong, Freo, Essendon and Sydney are all in the upper middle part of the table. This is good news for coaches as a lot of fantasy relevant players come from these teams.
- Port, North Melbourne and Hawthorn at the bottom may be a concern for some coaches.
- Be aware of the cautionary comment below about the Fantasy Finals games
Caution – different selection behaviour in Fantasy Finals
In previous years we’ve seen team dynamics take over and influence player selections in the last few fantasy finals rounds, for example:
- Teams battling to get into AFL Finals, or a more favourable spot, will be going flat out and play their best team.
- Teams with a secure spot in the AFL Finals are likely to rest star players. This tactic appears to have benefited Hawthorn and Freo in past years so we should see it repeated.
- Teams lower down ladder and outside of AFL Finals contention will play their kids, send star players for early surgery and give club veterans farewell games.
So in my view the team scoring percentage methodology that is the basis of this article will be more reliable and useful in the rounds leading up to the finals, than in the last few rounds of the fantasy finals.
That’s it for this week. Please make comments below or hit me up on twitter @NixTrader.