Thursday, August 5, 2010

2nd Opinion - another doctor's visit

I’m setting about on trying to interact with in the fantasy hoops game. Next up (because Kamla won’t reply to my emails) is Jason Hahn, proprietor of the fantasy hoops blog “fBasketballBlog” and the Fantasy Doctor over at Dime magazine. Geez, does everyone have to be a doctor when they spit out fantasy advice? Why not any other profession? From now on, I going to be the Fantasy Guy from Accounts Receivable. Straight up numba crunchin’ like my G, Herbert Kornfeld. (Mourn ya til I join ya, H-Dog.)

Anyway, here is some Q&A with Jason, who is already doing some quality offseason work and will be just as good in-season, what with the red/yellow/green notes n’ stuff (just like a traffic light!).

To9C: How did you get into this fantasy basketball stuff? Does your mom know about this?

JH: First off, I just want to quickly say that I'm humbled to be in the interviewed company of such fantasy basketball greats as Steve "Dr. A" Alexander and Ken Slight. You've become something of a Charlie Rose or Larry King in the fantasy basketball world, and I'm honored to be interviewed here. To your question, my love for fantasy basketball was sparked by my love for basketball in general. I participated in my first fantasy league in the late '90s on with some friends and haven't looked back since. I just love the game of fantasy basketball -- the attention it demands, the chance to manage your very own team, the opportunities to get the best of your friends and the knowledge of lesser-known players it brings. My love for fantasy basketball fuels my love for the NBA. It's an obsession of mine that I'm not ashamed of. Some are addicted to alcohol, others to porn -- I'm addicted to fantasy basketball. I only started blogging about fantasy ball last summer, when I had the opportunity to take a class in my graduate journalism program about how to launch and maintain a professional blog. When we were given our choice of topics, fantasy basketball was the obvious way to go. Needless to say, writing about fantasy basketball, no matter how crudely, is a dream that merges two intense loves of mine. And yes, my mom knows about this, though she doesn't quite understand it.

To9C: How did the gig with Dime Magazine come about? Are you really a doctor?

JH: I have to give thanks to my younger brother and one of our friends, who both suggested last summer that I try to write for Dime Magazine. I scoffed at the idea and thought it was a pipe dream, but a couple weeks later those brief conversations popped up in my head again and I figured that it couldn't hurt to try. So I e-mailed the crew at Dime Magazine, telling them that I'm a huge fan of basketball -- especially fantasy basketball -- and sent a link to my young fantasy basketball blog, along with my resume. After nearly a month of silence, an editor at Dime finally replied and said they were actually looking for someone to take over the duties of the Fantasy Doctor at, and that they dug my blog. I wrote my first post as the Fantasy Doctor the very next day. In the words of Forrest Gump, that's all I have to say about that. It was really incredible timing, and I'm hugely grateful for that. Though I wish I could claim the title and the salary, no, I am not a doctor.

To9C: What is going to be different/better in 10-11 than 09-10?

JH: I hate to be obvious but the values of some big fantasy names are going to be impacted by off-season moves. LeBron James isn't a consensus No. 1 pick, which is what he was last fall. Dwyane Wade's fantasy appeal is a bit of a mystery. Chris Bosh is no longer a late first-round or early second-round pick. Amar'e Stoudemire's value is no longer unpredictable just because of his knee -- the absence of Steve Nash (who is also set to take a step down out of first-round value thanks to age, STAT's departure and Hedo Turkoglu's arrival) in his life could also be a downer for his value. There are many that are bumping down an older Kobe Bryant to the latter half of the first round this year. Stephen Curry as a first-rounder is still a ridiculous idea to some, though it's happening. Yao Ming and Blake Griffin are set to return to the court, which could be painfully interesting. And let's not forget about the great Gilbert Arenas making a comeback to a drastically different Wizards squad. I think it's going to take a lot of fantasy owners some time to digest all that's happened on the NBA landscape this summer. Overall, I think this makes 2010-11 more unpredictable and, therefore, more fun than last season. So much has changed for so many teams that surprising shifts in fantasy values are bound to happen, and it will be tons of fun to try to keep up.

To9C: What was your biggest whiff last year? Mine was Marvin Williams - you'd think I'd know better being in Atlanta.

JH: This one's easy: being ecstatic about having Al Jefferson fall to me at No. 14 overall in a 16-man league. I genuinely thought that Jefferson would beast it last season. Yes, I expected him to take some time to work himself back into peak form, but I was convinced that he was going to finish the season as a top-15 fantasy asset. I was way off on that one, though I think his playing time was at least partly to blame. Looking back, it was incredibly hasty of me to think Jefferson could return and put up that kind of value immediately -- kind of like expecting Bristol and Levi to actually work the second time around. Surprisingly enough, I still managed to win that league, though I definitely deserved to be shamefully destroyed.

To9C: Following your mock w/WS Help - what do you have to say to the doubters of taking S. Curry in rd 1? (note: I fully support Curry in top 12)

JH: First off, I understand the doubting. He's a relatively unknown name who only really found his groove after the first two months of the 2009-10 season. Nevertheless, he finished the season with sick overall stats -- especially for a rookie. The stats that set him apart from the likes of Tyreke Evans were his threes (2.1 per game) and steals (1.9 per game). He also shot the ball well from the field (46.2 percent) and the free-throw line (88.5 percent). Yes, he turned the ball over 3.1 times per contest, but that does little to weigh down his overall value, let alone his sky-high potential. The only slight risk to his value this season is the coaching situation in Oakland -- if Nellie goes, the offense might not be as open as it was last year, and if Nellie stays, madness might ensue. But both the prospect of Nellie leaving and Curry getting relegated to the bench more often this season are unlikely. By averages in a nine-category league, Curry finished last season with top-12 value, which means even if he remains stagnant, the sophomore would still be worth a first-round pick. That's very comforting. The kid is young, plays beautiful basketball in a system that lends itself to fantasy-friendly play and is on a team that has fewer offensive weapons than it did last season. I really don't think you need much more convincing, though if you do, head on over to Dr. A's most recent post at RotoWorld, and look at Curry's No. 11 overall player ranking last year (by averages with nine categories) at Basketball Monster.

To9C: Do you have someone in mind that probably won't be drafted but will be a factor or at least discussed this season?

JH: Great question. Deep sleepers are always tough to predict, but I'll go out on a very thin limb and say David Andersen, the second-year, 30-year-old big man who showed some flashes of goodness last year in Houston. Now that he's on a depleted Raptors team that doesn't have many viable bigs, Andersen, who can hit the three, could be a hot waiver-wire throughout this season. I'll also throw in Patrick Patterson, Tiago Splitter, Jannero Pargo, Dorrell Wright and Lance Stephenson into the mix. Oh, and let's hope no one forgot about Reggie Williams already.

To9C: What's the craziest question you got for the fantasy doctor?

JH: Thankfully our readers are pretty savvy, and it's rare that I get a question that is way off base. But one comment on my recent outlook for James, Wade and Bosh in Miami stands out: "you left out the fact that all will suffer major cases of Vaginitis and will probably go thru about 3-6 tubes of Vagisil each a night…oh..they don’t keep those stats???well..they probably will now." My response? "That’s beyond the realm of my expertise."

Thanks Jason. Continue reading his work on fBasketballBlog and at Dime Magazine. Now I’m off crunch more numbers. These TPS reports won’t update themselves, you know.


jhahn said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jason said...

The "doctor" wasn't up to me. "Fantasy Guy from Accounts Receivable" sounds like the start of something grand. And is it time to scream "Kamlaaaa!" the same way we scream "Kaaaaahn!"? I hope he responds. Much thanks again for reaching out. Keep up the great work here and enjoy the crunchin'.

Doneycat said...

Truth be told, I haven't pushed him that hard, but he is here in Atlanta with NBA TV, so I'd like to think I can get him.

Also, I'd like to think I'll say his name like Seinfeld did with Newman - teeth closed, fist clenched, and to no one in particular. I already do that with Turkoglu.

Charles said...

Don't hate the Turkey Glue, Doneycat.

melinda said...

Very informative blog post. I haven't read like this post. Thanks for a good post comments. Keep on posting useful matters in this post. Thanks for sharing.


Patrick said...

Very good interview, as usual. I do enjoy delving into the personal life of some of the internet's premier fantasy basketball minds.

And I can't wait to read your interview with Dr. Van Nostrand.

game sportswear said...

I love the interview. Keep them coming.

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