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Sunday, December 10, 2006

The Cornerstone Conference -- At the Brink

Update: Since this message was posted, the owner who posted completed a trade, acquiring Carmelo Anthony and sending Dwight Howard AND Raymond Felton on 12/15. Just a day or two before the brawl at Madison Square Garden. What gives!

The fabric of our Fantasy Basketball league -- "The Cornerstone Conference" -- is at the brink. The brink of having a few owners drown in their frustrations. The below is a recent post from our league with an owner (to remain nameless) trying to encourage some activity. Somewhat of a harsh criticism of our league, however -- it's main purpose was to get something going.

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Ok. Seriously. I have had Chris Paul on the block for over one week now. Will someone at least offend me with some ridiculous official offer. The closest I got was a tongue in cheek offer of Chris Webber for Chris Paul straight up. (After I dropped him the week prior) At this point I would consider the merits of such a trade if it was at least offered to me officially.

I ventured to try and trade with another owner in this league who shall remain nameless (Let me just say his team "stinks" and he should be looking for a trade) and after a few emails he just stopped returning my emails. Is there no etiquette in this league? Is this whole league so conflict averse that no healthy debate can happen? If anyone is interested in the facts unless the rest of us make trades here **** IS GOING TO RUN AWAY WITH THIS LEAGUE.

I tried trading with another guy and have so little clue of who is in this league that I sent an email to the wrong owner. This wrong owner promptly chastised me for making such a ridiculous offer. I'm a two time champion in this league. Make me an offer then....

Further I'd like to lob a bomb over to the commissioners office. Somebody needs to take you guys off life support. It is your responsibility to make this league work. (Never mind that the commissioner who runs your baseball league is lazy) Set some rules. Require that each person write one article of substance before the allstar break or risk losing some wins. C'mon! Does anyone have a pulse in this league?

Below is an excerpt of an article I wrote for my other league. While it doesn't portray this league in a very flattering light. I'm desperate. so here you go. To be honest based on my opinion of this league I'm guessing about two of you will read this.

THEORIES GALORE (Excerpt)

My life as a fantasy owner consumes me. I liken my participation in fantasy hoops to my golf game. The more I work at it the more I suck. With an extra long off-season from fantasy basketball this past year, (having missed the playoffs in both of my leagues) I was left with plenty of time to think. A myriad of thoughts went through my head over the summer, many of which were not positive. I give to you a few examples of the thoughts that reverberated through the empty space between my ears regarding my fantasy lot in life:

  • I’m not getting better at fantasy, I’m getting worse.
  • I can’t keep up with the new breed of young, ingenious well read fantasy owners.
  • Maybe I’ve torn the ACL of my fantasy brain? If I were Amare, I would have packed it in. Maybe I should pack it in?
  • Fantasy league is not real. It has no meaning. Fantasy is stupid.

The last reason I must admit shook me to my core. Fantasy not real! Are you kidding? I know you all must be recoiling in horror at the blasphemous inference that fantasy league is an unreal endeavor relegated to those who have little to no capacity to make any real difference in this world. It was this “valley of the shadow of death” spot in my life that I grabbed the ladder to climb out of the pool of self pity I had been swimming in and begun to work my way back to fantasy respectability.

My first step was analyzing my weaknesses. I sought counsel from all over, while paying specific attention to the 3 most important people in my fantasy life: Me, myself and I….

Using the valuable insight provided, I was able to draw a series of conclusions that I believe to be the groundbreaking, paradigm shift, revelation type of stuff that I’m convinced all the great owners of yore surely received in the lowest points of their careers.

Further, as I sought the depraved depths of my fantasy soul for insight as to what would make me great, I became convinced that success could not come unless I shared this. By sharing, I would be set free. By sharing, I would cement my legacy years from now when some resourceful budding fantasy owner would dig up this piece and realize that fantasy greatness was prophesied by the Owner formerly known as ***. I share because I must. I share because I know many of you out there feel the same way. I share because I shudder at the thought of others dropping the much maligned art form of fantasy league for made up reasons such as: “I don’t have time to set my lineups daily” or “I have car pool duty”.

In fairness to me and my fantasy acumen I should tell you I have hoisted a fantasy crown twice in my lifetime, both times in basketball. However, as it is no mystery to anybody reading this article, never have I hoisted the 26by2sand3swinby4 crown. Thus I come, mercifully to my first epiphany.

THE FORBIDDEN FRUIT THOERY
Sure, I’ve hoisted the crown in my other fantasy league but who cares? This other league is the type that anyone in our existing league could have won. The type of league that when first launched I was able to get 3 of the players selected in the first round of our league…. With the 6th pick in the draft no less! Over the years I’ve spent less and less time with my other league, pouring my attention into 26by2s.

As I began thinking about my past success and pondering the playoffless plight of this past season, I realized I’d been entrapped by the issue that had plagued me since puberty. 26by2s had become like the girl I pursued but never got because I gave her way more attention than she deserved.

My other league was giving it up! Two first place finishes a couple of runner ups. Who cares if my other league is average looking and not that bright? Success is success right? As I pursued this line of thinking I realized much deeper things. How did I have success with the cute girl that would never go out with me all things being equal? Spend more time with the other girl!

Will success come in 26by2s for me? Who knows... I do know that last year I was not in contention for the first time in 5 years in my other league. Why? Too much time pining over 26by2s. Screw that. I’m getting my other league back!

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