Fantasy Fisticuffs pits angry combatants head-to-head in an MLS Fantasy soccer showdown. Each week, Phil and Ben argue over which players will perform. The stakes are high. The competitor whose team scores the fewer amount of points through Round 27 (September 3rd) will have to endure two laps of shaming around the Toyota Stadium concourse, Cersei Lannister style (though probably not nude)! Join our league using the code 35-1619 to follow along.
Ben is pulling away from the Big D Soccer League pack with 1190 points, having scored 53 in Round 14. Phil sits in second with 1135, scoring just over the average in R14 with 43 points. Congratulations to Jon Marks and the Marksmen, who put up 58 points last round for the Big D Soccer League weekly high score!
Round 14 Review:
Phil: It was a weird week for MLS Fantasy, and you could see it coming. Teams were rusty from the Copa America Centenario break. Many international players were still missing. Those who played midweek U.S. Open Cup games looked tired. The Dream Team is full of players that few people own.
Round 14 Dream Team
Ben: Indeed, it was a strange week. FCBT scored 53 last week, and that was a Top 10% score. I warned last week of USOC difficulties, and sure enough, some heavy hitters yielded some pretty pathetic scores. The troika of Javier Morales (M-$10.6), Burrito Martinez (F-$8.9), and Yura Movisisyan ($8.8) made the dream team, so you might have gotten some Real (Salt Lake) joy last round by prepping for Round 15.
Round 15: Fight!
Phil: The New York Red Bulls are the hottest team in the league and have a DGW. Can you fit four Red Bulls into your squad this week? Sacha Kljestan (M-$12.0) is an absolute must-have and my pick for Captain. Bradley Wright-Phillips (F-$11.1) will get at least one goal. Mike Grella (M-$8.3) was on fire last week with two goals. Sal Zizzo (D-$6.6) is the way into the NYRB backline. Luis Robles (G - $6.3) is the highest scoring goalie but also the most expensive.
Ben: All good things must come to an end here, Phil. Don't chase the points here! New York's got a game at altitude on a short week (@RSL) followed by what will be the 4th of 6 games in 17 games when they travel to face a well-rested Columbus Crew. Rotation and exhaustion's the word. I think RSL's going to die a slow death when they travel to Frisco, but I think they'll absolutely pummel New York at mid week. Any of the aforementioned RSL men and Joao Plata (F-$9.5) provide good value and will be available during the Round 18 bye.
Phil: The value backline is still the way to go. You can construct an all-DGW backline on the cheap this week. Here's my recommendation:
- Sal Zizzo (D-$6.6), NY (@RSL, @CLB)
- Keegan Rosenberry* (D-$5.8), PHI (vs. CHI, vs. VAN)
- Justen Glad (D-$5.1), RSL (vs. NY, @DAL)
- Daniel Steres* (D-$5.1), LA (vs. COL, @SJ)
*Caution: Round 18 bye
Ben: I second this. If you've already got a goalie lined up for Round 18, Andre Blake (G-$5.0) is a great buy this week with 2 home games against the anemic attacks of the Chicago Fire and Vancouver Whitecaps.
Round 15: Final Thoughts
Ben: Now that the US Men's National Team is toast, get your ass back to Mars! There's still over a half season left to play. Seriously though, this is a great week to project your roster and lineup out to Round 18 if you spent the wild card. I'm more or less mapped until Round 18, and I'm 99% certain I'm Glad to go Glad and Blessed to buy Blake.
Phil: Don't panic. It was predictable how unpredictable the first week back from break would be. Stick to your guns and keep going with the proven players.
Stock up on Red Bulls because they are playing the best soccer in MLS right now, have a DGW, and don't have a Round 18 bye.