Hello everybody and welcome back – if you’ve ever read this column before, that is. One way or another, I’m Javier Gancedo, writing not from the Euroleague headquarters but rather from home this time around.
Yes, it will be a very busy Wednesday for all of us with as many as eight games taking place, so I decided to write some lines about Fantasy Challenge right now, officially just 49 minutes away from my third wedding anniversary. It has been quite a journey so far, and I can’t complain, but you guys probably ain’t expecting me to tell you all how good my wife is. You want me to talk Fantasy Challenge, right? OK, so let’s go!
First and foremost, and just as expected, I didn’t have a great fantasy week; I did make enough money to start worrying about buying good players based on how well they will do instead of how many credits I will earn, though. My team, Meet the Boss, scored 130 points and piled up around 605 credits. Still, once again this week, I will be in it – mostly – for the money: That’s my strategy.
You see, I was totally right about Qyntel Woods being player of the week. I was right in that all eyes were on him … when he got that double technical foul. Woods battled foul troubles throughout the game, so I was utterly wrong in the end.
So, what’s next? I still rank 14th out of 39 in the BallinEurope Invitational Challenge – a little bit far from what I expected. So it’s time to be a little bit more aggressive and take decisions that go against all logic. Yes, going crazy can be a good thing in this game when you know what you are talking about. As you saw with Woods, I have no idea whatsoever and get lucky most of the time but hey, at least I have a method.
Looking at my team, I see Bojan Popovic with a red cross. He’ll probably play, but I don’t wan to take any risks. With Popovic already gone, it is time to get rid of my good man Dimitrios Mavroeidis, thanking him for the almost 10 credits he gave me this week. I don’t like that upcoming matchup against Tiago Splitter nor even when Ali Traore plays against Regal FC Barcelona (it’s a sin by all means to put a big guy against them), but I still think it’s a good move. Of course, Woods has to go, too: Panathinaikos is coming. That says it all.
So, I’m taking Bo McCalebb because once again, Popovic is ill so McCalebb should have a good game against him. This leaves me with 163 credits for two players: Quite a lot of money. I’m buying Travis Watson because Dalibor Bagaric isn’t playing this week, which leaves him a lot of room for rebounds and leaves me with all options open at shooting guards and small forwards.
I can choose *anybody*, so I’m grabbing Romain Sato: He’s the most expensive player in that group despite being underpriced and despite Montepaschi playing Fenerbahce Ulker without Emir Preldzic. True, Rasim Basak will hit Sato in places he never thought’d be hit, but that’s basketball – and life when you face such as physical, terrific defender.
So Meet the Boss will look like this in Week 4:
Bo McCalebb is underpriced, cheap and playing against a team with injuries at point guard. What’s not to like?
Milos Teodosic. I would have traded him if Popovic hadn’t been ill, but at least he’s playing at home.
Romain Sato. After the game he had in France, I think he’s a must this week. In my humble opinion.
Pete Mickeal. Navarro played this weekend, but just because Cajasol – my team! – got Barcelona in trouble.
Fernando San Emeterio. Possibly his last week here, as the game against Maroussi doesn’t suit him.
Je’kel Foster. It will be interesting to find out how he does against Pablo Prigioni and Sergi Vidal. And tough.
Travis Watson. Zalgiris faces a critical game in Zagreb, so I expect Watson to play a lot.
Ali Traore, who I’m going to interview tomorrow, but I won’t mention that I have him in the game!
Darjus Lavrinovic. Should I name him team captain already? Darjus remains *the* 2009-10 Euroleague fantasy player so far.
Aleks Maric. Not an easy game against Bjelica, Bayles and Borovnjak. Still, Maric is rock-solid.
That’s all for me this time, so enjoy a wild Euroleague week and don’t forget to make your trades before Wednesday, 17:15 CET. No, I will not reopen the game for you! As Euroleague official game announcer Eddy Vidal would say.. Laaaadies and gentlemen… you have been warned!