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Fixture news, Colby McKercher’s Fantasy game, Grundy a Pig again? – Ep. 635

PODCAST: An emergency podcast has been called!

News of the 2024 fixture has dropped and the start to the year is going to be different to what we’ve seen before. Roy, Calvin and Warnie call an emergency podcast to chat through the Fantasy ramifications and possible solutions. One of Cal’s ex-students, Colby McKercher, joins the show live in the studio ahead of next week’s AFL Draft. The likely first round picks gives The Traders the lowdown on some of the best draftees that we should keep an eye on for our Fantasy teams. The boys also chat through the most relevant off-season moves.

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Episode guide

1:00 – The Opening Round is changing the way AFL Fantasy will be played in 2024.

3:50 – Warnie suggests we don’t play in ‘Round 0’.

5:15 – How the early byes look and possible Fantasy Classic rules.

7:50 – Brodie Grundy looks like a good buy this year, can you still start him with the early bye?

11:30 – Thoughts on whether price changes include Opening Round scores.

14:00 – Tips on how you can approach your Fantasy Draft league.

18:10 – Keeper leagues might consider editing scores and including ‘Round 0’ scores when their club has the bye.

20:20 – The mid-season byes follow the same strucutre as 2023.

24:50 – Colby McKercher joins the show.

27:00 – Calvin taught Colby at high school including another language.

29:30 – Where did Colby rank in Fantasy Classic this year?

31:00 – Colby averaged 11.7 in his nine Coates Talent League this year.

33:30 – Roy thinks a role off half-back could be good for Fantasy in his debut season.

39:00 – The most relevant players of the trade period are ranked with Brodie Grundy at the top with Max Gawn who will also benefit from the move.

41:30 – Tristan Xerri is another ruck to consider based on Todd Goldstein moving on.

45:00 – Roy has some thoughts on his bench ruck due to the fixture.

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Co-captain of DT Talk since we started this thing in 2007. Best finish was 13th in 2009... that was a long time ago. Follow on Twitter: @WarnieDT

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Jag67
Jag67
7 months ago

C’mon AFL.
If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.

Bill
Bill
7 months ago

The question is how much should the fixture influence our player selections?
Does it matter that, potentially:
Nick Daicos can return you 100+ points for 22 rounds
or
Tim Taranto can return you 100+ points for 23 rounds

Bill
Bill
7 months ago
Reply to  Bill

Tim Taranto Zac Merrett can return you 100+ points for 23 rounds

The Chosen Won™®©
Member
7 months ago

Best 20 2 trades rounds 2,3,5 and 6.

Good Luck

The Chosen Won™®©
Member
7 months ago
Reply to  Warnie

Completely understand we have many Calvin’s in our community, So this would then indicate best 18 and three trades for each of the 8 bye rounds?

Good Luck in 2024

W Hazell
W Hazell
7 months ago
Reply to  Warnie

Thanks for the podcast. Gives a better idea of what is more likely to happen.

If opening round is out of fantasy and there is the reduced field best 18 (2 trade structure as opposed to 3 or more) for the early round byes as per podcast…. This would no doubt work and be simple but why would you pick a player from one of the opening round 8 teams unless you felt you were going to miss out on some huge price increase over that period or at least till they had their makeup bye. Is this not the big risk -the early round teams are mainly made from 10 teams players only and hence may be ultra similar? is this desirable and inclusive for coaches that want to pick their favorite team players rather than be restricted?

Maybe the strategy changes to just picking the best low cost cash cows from these 8 opening round teams as you know their going to be missing an early round and can easily afford them off field. But how do you suddenly afford the opening round premiums post RD 6 and how can you even get them if only 2 trades early. Myriad of conundrums.

Also great to mention Gawn/Grundy as trade or trade beneficiary targets-totally….but Hey their playing against each other in opening round. If this opening round is out are we then picking them for round 1 (and price-altered or not altered?) given that they will both miss a game shortly. Good God!!!!!!

Dulcify
Dulcify
7 months ago

Clearly the AFL don’t give a rats toss bag about us fantasy players. Surely it makes sense to have weeks 1/2 as a split round.

The AFL wants to take the game to the Northern states. All four of those teams have been in the comp for 10 years plus, so I think the population of the Northern states are aware that the AFL exists. I’m not expecting the number of fantasy players to rise next season, might be a lot pull the pin though.🤷‍♂️

Daicos4Brownlow
Daicos4Brownlow
7 months ago
Reply to  Dulcify

Split rounds would have been so much more preferable.

Being a Queenslander, I can honestly say that we know the AFL exists.

Having lived in Sydney, I can confidently say that they know the AFL exists; however, they prefer to watch their sport on TV, which is why NRL crowds can be very poor.

I don’t really think the experiment is going to make a change in Sydney’s apathetic approach to sport. It could, however, change the AFL Fantasy participation rate.

W Hazell
W Hazell
7 months ago

I think opening round may not be so much about promotion of the game in QLD and NSW overall. I agree this is well-established and opening round won’t make that much difference overall. I think it might be more about one-off revenue to NSW and QLD and squaring the revenue balance sheet of gather round being in Adelaide. WA might be in grievance now and so it would not surprise if something happened here 2025.

It is what it is and can’t be changed this year. However, the best solution for fantasy 2024 is the problem. Keeping it simple is key but what is simple to administer does not mean that it translates to simple to play. For example, taking out opening round is a simple solution, but I think it may make the game strategy really complex to play.

What I think is really the Fantasy problem of not including opening round somehow is the following:

  1. Most of the top teams and hence top premiums are in opening round. (6 of the top 8 teams from 2023)
  2. Many of the “value” players already identified are playing opening round.
  3. I can’t see how you can include opening round premiums early in your team (not great for variation and supporters are limited in favorite player selection).
  4. It is going to be very difficult to subsequently get these opening round premiums and they still have the standard byes to come post their makeup bye. We all know you can’t afford doing multiple sideway premium trades (with 2 trades standard).

I don’t think the argument of people missing making a team for opening round is valid. You nominate and advertise a starting date to which people need to work to -simple as that.

Whatever happens we are all in the same system and so it will be an even playing field and chance to score to a hat or car. Most of us are not in this league of player anyway. However, we don’t want to see much frustration, loss of enrolment and a large percentage of coaches just dropping their teams before the season is half-way over as it is just too hard to do well or improve your position.

Stevo
Stevo
7 months ago
Reply to  W Hazell

I just hate the idea of removing the first 4 games from the fantasy season, it’s just like playing a premiership game and not awarding 4 points to the winner. Surely the way to go is to make it a free hit for round 0. Pick your squad for round 0 from 8 teams, normal scoring, then unlimited trades into round 1, and then normal rules from there. Everyone will know AFL starts on March 7th, surely everyone will think that’s when AFL fantasy starts too? You might lose more casual players by not starting it in round 0. Shouldn’t need much IT work for that solution either.

As for the early bye rounds, with only 2 teams not playing, I’m not bothered if its best 18 or 3 trades. Or even best 22 and 2 trades I’d be OK with. All these options will require different tactics compared to past seasons.

W Hazell
W Hazell
7 months ago
Reply to  Stevo

Agree about sentiments of removing first 4 games. A type of “Free hit” concept I don’t mind as part of a solution, think it’s better than no opening round, but not sure it’s the whole solution to player inequity.

The greatest tragedy for me is that almost half (44.5%) of teams and players will have a handicap of having 2 byes instead of 1 and as such you largely remove them from viable early selection and by the time you can select them, they may have lost their value and/or you just are not in a position to buy them. Also given the teams involved I think it would be >50% of what would have otherwise (normally) been popular or well-informed starting selections.

How can you solve this “handicap” problem playing all rounds with viable early access to all players in equity across coaches and keeping it fairly simple- the Holy Grail?

How could a coach pick say “Brodie Grundy” from the gecko and not be disadvantaged by several thousand dollars sitting on the bench in round 5? The only thing I can think of is doing something around taking their opening round score and moving it to round 5 or alternatively being able to use their average at this time. The key is a system creating a virtual removal of the extra early bye.

lukeybtyes
lukeybtyes
7 months ago

It’s only been 3 months, but boy I’ve missed the bants. Great content guys, even in the off-season!

lizardofoz
lizardofoz
7 months ago

I don’t listen to podcasts so this may not seem earthshaking but
the only reasonably fair solution is fantasy starts Rd 1.
Those who have already played receive a discount of approx. 5% but my maths are likely wrong.
Let those who have created the mess clean it up.

Michael Fawcus
Michael Fawcus
6 months ago
Reply to  Warnie

I don’t understand why using scores from opening round to the bye rounds is “WAAAAYYYYY too messy to even consider in Classic”.
I mean how stupid do you have to be to figure this out? I think this makes it so much easier not more difficult.

Dulcify
Dulcify
7 months ago

Having been a member of DT Shiva since 2016 it will be very interesting to see what effect opening round has on the start of the season. Opening round may also have a huge impact on how we navigate our draft selections.

W Hazell
W Hazell
7 months ago
Reply to  Warnie

For Classic. In summary maybe

Seems like themes to the bye inequity problem are:

Somehow virtually removing the early extra bye
OR
Compensation or an Incentive for picking a player with a 1 bye handicap. The compensation or incentive could be a financial or providing extra trades to deal with the impact of these players.
OR
Coaches just need to deal with it strategically (Risks game engagement though I think for various reasons)

We need to be clear that just reducing the field alone (say to 18) for a early bye is not an adequate form of compensation for an opening round player in your team at that time. There is a significant opportunistic cost with using one of your 2 trades to correct or having a large amount of cash unused on your bench. it might help your round score disadvantage and be part of the solution, but it does nothing to adjust your season score disadvantage.

Signing off from this now. Thanks for taking all comments on board Warnie -much to consider, good luck with what is a difficult task no doubt.

Daicos4Brownlow
Daicos4Brownlow
7 months ago

It might be a good year to take a break from Fantasy. My wife would appreciate that.

Phteven
Phteven
7 months ago

I’m yet to finish in top 10000 so next year will be more of the same from me

Daicos4Brownlow
Daicos4Brownlow
7 months ago
Reply to  Phteven

Well, this year was a shocker for me. With 2024 not being a proper, full season of Fantasy, I am not sure it’s worth the effort.

Dulcify
Dulcify
7 months ago

I’m sure you’ve heard the expression “when the going gets tough, the tough get going”.

Michael Fawcus
Michael Fawcus
6 months ago

I would like the strategy re opening round be:
The scores for all these 8 teams be saved to use later. In round 2 for example coaches would have the option of fielding any players from Brisbane and Carlton and the score that they got in opening round would count. The same would apply to rounds 3, 5 & 6 where the two byes are in play. The one proviso would be that these players could not be used as vc or C as their score is already known.
This way, all rounds up to round 12 would be played with a full fixture.
This should apply to both classic and keeper leagues.

Mel
Mel
6 months ago

My biggest concern is the price movement of players, particularly rookies from Opening Round games. We are gonna have one or two who do a Nick Martin. If we don’t include OR score, the coaches who bought those players get no benefit while everyone jumps on either next week or, at latest, pre-bye. How you do this will depend whether the rookie’s OR score affects their price before R2. If we shift the score to their next bye round, everyone will absolutely own the best OR rookie scorers prior to that.
Alternatively if we score it then we have OR rookies making money faster than better scoring R1 rookies. If we make it a free hit you just buy every playing OR rookie, make whatever you make, then have a heap of extra cash to spend on R1. All options look pretty season defining.




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