REL Basketball1Well, there goes that…  If you want to avoid a whiny rant about a bad-beat in the REL playoffs that came down to .001% of a point, then just skip over my recap.  I’m cold.  I’m bitter.  I’m all alone!  Thankfully I have some primo KCP I can huff and get me through the offseason.  Hey, at least I didn’t destroy my keepers core to go for the gold!  Here’s how the semis wrapped up in week 21 in the REL, plus a preview of the REL Finals:

RAZZBALL ELITE LEAGUE

Semi-Finals:

2nd seed Slim – Razzball “DEF” (5-4-0) 6th seed JB Gilpin – Razzball

JB: Yup.  Lost by .001 FG%.  Given I won by 2 3PTM and 1 Pt, but that’s neither here nor there!  Even with the walking-porcelain-Bosnian Nurk, Slim managed to not miss a single game all week.  I on the other hand came in with a full roster, and picked up 9 DNPs from the going-into-the-week-healthy Luol Deng, Tyson Chandler, KCP, Kawhi Leonard, Brandon Knight, and Dirk Nowitzki.  Easily swings 25 REB as well, with a TO a landslide W for me, so if half of those guys don’t miss a game or two, I win pretty easily.  To quote the best philosophical movie of our time – Men in Black – “it’s better to have loved and lost, than have never loved at all.”  Bleh, having Oubre and Dwight Powell as stashes hurt my chances as well, but I like my core heading into next year.  With my final FAAB dollar – mind you I saved it since week 1 – I nabbed Christian Wood even though there’s a 99% chance I ain’t keepin’ him.  So alas, we go into the off-season and re-load.

Slim: Horseshoes and Hand Grenades, JB…  Horseshoes and Hand Grenades.  As we all know those are the only two things where being close matters but for my REL team that adage now has an entirely new meaning.  So in my 5-4 win I won FG% by .001, boards by 27, and the other 3 category wins weren’t close.  I know the boards aren’t all that close either but since JB decided to go with DNP-old guys (Dirk, Tyson Chandler, Deng) and someone who is still yet to see 70 games in a season (Kawhi) he probably thought he could have won boards if he was at full strength, although “full strength” was obviously never going to be an option with those guys but he knew about that risk when he traded for them.  As it turned out there were two major reasons I won these categories.  The first is Mr. North Carolina himself John ‘Horseshoe’ Henson with his .656 FG% and 22 boards, and the second is Jusuf ‘Hand Grenade’ Nurkic who gave me  a .629 FG% and 23 boards.  Two weeks ago both were out of commission and now the pair sends me to the finals, and to think I offered Henson to nearly every team in the league at some point this year.

I guess I could have gone with “It’s better to be lucky than good”, but my good luck happened weeks ago when I added Josh Richardson (.500 FG%), JaMychal Green (.457 FG%), and Shane Larkin (.650 FG%).  Or maybe I was lucky to have sold Kobe and Hood and in doing so turning myself away from being a FG-punt team.  Or maybe it was just that Horseshoe Henson is on my team and not JB’s who actually had an offer on the table for Henson at one point but didn’t want to get rid of, are you ready for this, Wilson Chandler!  The only thing about this past week that certainly wasn’t luck was the not so subtle play of Hand Grenade Nurkic.  Even though I’m in the finals and all that matters now is what happens this week, I still can’t help but think how much better I’m going to be next year considering nearly every player on my team is 25 or younger.

Alright fine, I’ll pose the question you are all thinking, did JB have a better team than me?  Since that question is written in the past tense it doesn’t matter in the slightest, because I’m the lucky one who’s about to get stomped in the finals!  Truth be told I was actually rooting for JB to beat me late last night.  If healthy, yeah yeah I understand there’s a better chance I’ll be struck by lightning while being eaten by a shark, but if healthy JB would have had a much better shot at giving him a run for his money.

4th seed I Ain’t No Jok(ic) DEF (6-3-0) 1st seed HateUsCauseTheyAnus 

I Ain’t No Jok(ic): Whew!

That was a nail-biting matchup to get into the finals, but we made it! Kudos to Adam for putting together a solid team and once again putting up a tough fight in my guys 6-3 victory. It was closer than it sounds. I had my doubts throughout the weekend that I’d be able to pull it out. Especially with no Nerlens Noel, Oladipo missing half the week, and Livingston getting rested on Sunday (damn you Steve Kerr, which I’m pretty certain doesn’t get uttered too often). Nobody had a stand-out week for my team this week, but the team is built to, hopefully, withstand any one guy being out. Which it did. Adam had a few rests and injuries to overcome this week as well. I’m thankful for  Zach Randolph sitting and the Spurs resting Aldridge on Saturday, which was big I think. I’m also glad that I tried to build such a balanced team, one that could compete against anyone even if they were dominant in one or two of my better categories. I mean, my two worst categories this year were easily turnovers and 3PTM where I was 2-19 and 11-11 respectively up to this point. I ended up winning both categories this week, which was the difference between advancing and going home. Take what your opponent gives you, right? Anyway, once again thanks for a great matchup Adam!

I had an eye on the JB vs Slim matchup in the other semi and I’ve gotta say that must have been pretty heartbreaking for JB. Looking at it on Friday or Saturday I didn’t really think JB had a shot as it looked like Slim had it all wrapped up. BUT, I glanced at it on Sunday and saw Slim was up 5-4 and JB was down by .001 in FG% with once guy to play still vs Slims zero. All Randy Wittman had to do was put Kelly Oubre in to make one, or at most two shots from the field and JB wins that matchup. Instead, up 20+ against the horrible Lakers, Wittman leaves his starters in until there was one minute left, and then finally subs Oubre in. Unfortunately he didn’t get a shot off in his one minute. That’s rough. Even more so considering that FG% is Slims punt category and that might have been his highest FG% on the entire season. Better luck next year JB (and I’ll see you in the finals of the JB vs Slim RCL).

On the wire I had a set of pickups to make if I lost, but if I won my top two guys were Karasev (5 games this week) and Jordan Hamilton. Hamilton has 4 games and all of them are on days that are usable for me. The guy I dropped, Carl Landry, was playing very well but was a tough guy to hold for a couple reasons. Number one is that he only had 3 games this week, and one of them was on a day I already had a full lineup. The second reason was that if Noel came back Landry may not play much. So at best I was looking at 2 games, but maybe only 1 with real quality minutes. Now, Hamilton is on a 10 day deal and who knows how much he plays, but, New Orleans needs some offence so I’m hoping he gets a chance to show what he can do this coming week. The kid can score. It would be a nice homecoming to my team too. I’ll throw this piece of trivia out for you. If we go all the way back to 2013, Hamilton was my second ever FAAB pickup in the REL (behind Mozgov, who, almost 3 years later is still with my team). My bid at the time was $31, which ends up being my second most expensive FAAB add ever behind a $32 Andre Roberson in 2014. Suffice to say I showed a lot of faith in a young and unproven Jordan Hamilton back in the day, and now the time has come to repay that faith!

Finals:

2nd seed Slim – Razzball vs. 4th seed I Ain’t No Jok(ic)

Slim: The finals.  First off, I shouldn’t even be here.  The other teams in the semis all sold youth for a shot at a title, on the other hand I traded away old guys (Kobe, Bogut, Butler) to get a little younger since I didn’t think I could compete with the craziness that is the renters.  At the trade deadline I had no Burks (still don’t), no Nurkic, no Henson, and no Bryce Dejean-Jones, so I had to either sell them all for vets who could very well get DNP-olds (re: JB’s semis) and have major issues with my big men next year or just play it out and hope for the best.  Since I still have no Burks and had to drop Bryce I can’t exactly say things worked out as good as they could have but I’m here now and I still have my youth, which at this point is all that really matters.

How can I win… Shit, I don’t know.  I’m hoping for a solid showing in TOs, Blocks, and Assists, my top categories.  I like my chances in 3s too, another of my better cats.  I highly doubt I can win FG%, points, boards, and steals, and if this is how it all works out then the winner will be decided by FT%.  However, on the year my opponent is shooting .794 and I’m at .772, in other words I’m probably going to lose it.  The only move I made for the week was dropping Langston Galloway, who the Knicks are done with at PG, for Nene.  I get an extra game out of Nene compared to Langston and if Markieff stays down I may be able to make a run at boards.  Yes you read that correctly… I’m putting all my eggs into Nene’s basket. (+1 Easter pun point!)

I Ain’t No Jok(ic): This is it! This right here is the opportunity I’ve been waiting for. What this team was built for over the last couple years. Buying players at auction that were injured and out for the year. Trading proven players for guys that hadn’t shown anything yet. Now comes the real test. It’s fitting to get a matchup against Slim, who’s already won an REL championship in the inaugural season. I think this is going to be yet another tough battle that comes down to the wire on Sunday. We played earlier in the season resulting in an 8-1 victory for my team, but Slim had a bit of a different team then and was going through some injuries at the time as well, so I doubt that’s indicative of how this matchup is going to play out. Though it does inspire a little confidence to know he can be beat. That and the fact that even last week I would have beaten Slim 6-3. I can only hope that injuries don’t derail my guys. Stay healthy boys! At this point I don’t plan on getting Carroll back, though it would be nice, but I really need to have Noel get healthy and play, which with the Sixers you never know.

Here we go!

REL Basketball winners1 large

  1. tentyme says:
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    You guys are all pros in this league can you help out?
    K so im in the championship game in a h2h weekly league we don’t use to’s we use fg% instead. The 5 cats i am focusing on because they are th only 5 i have chance at are 3’s, ast. blk rebounds n steals with the steals n blocks the most close at. so here is my line up
    cp3
    batum
    devin booker
    tobias
    draymond
    drummand
    david lee
    bismack
    dj aug
    rob cov

    bench ..noel, courtney lee , nurkic.

    play 2 of 3 ? bismarck , david lee or nurkic.. i think play nuric over lee and possibly c.lee over tobias. tobias doesn’t get any of the cats i need. or drop c lee and pick up shane larkin to play over tobias? i would also gain 2 games that way? THANK YOU FOR THE HELP !!

    • tentyme says:
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      @tentyme: shane larkin just got picked up dammit
      pick up sloan instead?

      • JB Gilpin

        JB Gilpin says:
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        @tentyme: Hah we’ll try! Nah not going for Sloan. I would go Bismack and Nurk. I do like replacing Tobias though, who else avail?

  2. JJ says:
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    Hey JB, I’m in the finals right now in a 10 team H2H league. Blake Griffin is available, is he worth a hold for Sunday since his suspension will be done? Might finally drop Faried for him.

    Rubio
    Turner
    Barton
    Ibaka
    Jokic
    Barea
    Faried
    Lillard
    Horford
    Douglas
    Draymond Green
    Monroe
    KCP

    • JB Gilpin

      JB Gilpin says:
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      @JJ: Nice work! Mehhhh I don’t see how holding a blank for 3 games/6 days would be worth one Blake game on Sunday, I’m prob not

      • JJ says:
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        @JB Gilpin: Cool thanks man! Do you think it would make sense to drop Faried or Jokic for J Val or Henson? I feel like I got too many Nuggets

        • JB Gilpin

          JB Gilpin says:
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          @JJ: Def nabbing Henson, yeah I’m probably indeed swapping both I don’t trust the Nugs either haha

  3. Adam

    Adam says:
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    I apologize for not getting my recap in! School is crazy this time of year…

    That was a pretty epic matchup for a semi-final! The trade for Batum did me in, since he went absolutely crazy this matchup. I won’t make any excuses about injuries and DNPs , since I knew the risk coming in. Even with the injury to Randolph, and a couple other fluky DNPs, I think I put myself in a position to win, which is all you can ask.

    My strategy from the beginning, was to put together a competitive team, and I think this can be done every year. I don’t believe in the slow building process, with years spent not competing… That would just be too irritating. Granted, the risk for benching is higher with vets, but young players often are inconsistent as well, so there are pros and cons.

    I move into next year with the core of Westbrook, Love, Aldridge, and Hood. I have a few cheaper guys, with some specialist stats, but these will be my main guns. Should be able to build around them effectively. Going back to the ole draft and deal strategy, to turn my young drafted players into consistent veterans. I’ll be curious to see what Lebron goes for, since he’ll likely be hitting the auction if I can’t deal his $77 salary.

    (Yes, I still have a matchup with JB this week, but we’re competing to be the 2nd and 3rd loser, so not a lot of glory there. On second thought, I still should win, just so JB can’t do any talking… We’ll see how it goes!)

    All that being said, great job Jokic! It was a great matchup, and it’s been a great season! Best of luck in the finals Slim, you’re gonna need it!

    • JB Gilpin

      JB Gilpin says:
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      @Adam: No worries man! Did you see the intro to my daily notes? haha.

      What about my strategy? Slow building PLUS competing?

      • Adam

        Adam says:
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        @JB Gilpin: Haha yeah, that was great! You mean slow building plus “competing?” The answer is in the punctuation!

        • JB Gilpin

          JB Gilpin says:
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          @Adam: hah did you see my punctuation in the “def” for slim and i’s matchup!?

          • Adam

            Adam says:
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            @JB Gilpin: That’s no coincidence! It matches how “healthy” and “competitive” your team is! xP

            • JB Gilpin

              JB Gilpin says:
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              @Adam: Ah. “I gotcha”

  4. Lior says:
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    Wow JB, that’s tough to handle. I had nearly the same thing happen in my matchup for dynasty! It came down to Marcelo Huertas vs John Wall and Roy Hibbert in the Lakers game last night. Wall saved me, and I won FG% by .003 (pretty much the same as Slim), won the matchup 5-4. I also have Noel hurt going into this week, which will hurt my steals and blocks, but my team has been on fire from downtown (LaVine/Matthews/Bogdanovic) after I had almost no shooters to start the year. I made a ton of moves at the deadline but still kept my youth, so I’m pretty satisfied with my team in the inaugural season, going into the finals.
    Good luck to Slim and Mr Green!

    • A Hill O' Beans says:
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      @Lior: Thanks Lior, and good luck in the Commenters REL championship. I’ll be coming for you next year (Mr Green by the way), but until then I’ll be rooting for you since you did such a good job putting the league together!

      • Lior says:
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        @A Hill O’ Beans: Haha thanks man, appreciate it. Your team is pretty scary for next year! R-Jax, Capela, Jonas, KCP, Gordon, Smart, Hezonja, Lyles, Booker…basically all the cheap young guys! Let’s hope everything goes well this week, and I’m sure next season will be a lot of fun

        • JB Gilpin

          JB Gilpin says:
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          @A Hill O’ Beans: @Lior: wait wait wait, mr green you’re cheating on the rel and playing in the commenters rel?!?!?!?

          • A Hill O' Beans says:
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            @JB Gilpin: haha yeah. I think you already knew that from when it was first setup, but you know, I’m a glutton for really deep league punishment. Actually now that I think about it, I think you rated my Commenters REL team way back when, haha.

            • JB Gilpin

              JB Gilpin says:
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              @Lior: @A Hill O’ Beans: Haha yeah I remember that now, I just wanted to call you out for CHEATING ON US! But seriously, thanks for hopping in there, awesome to see good competish in that league as well 🙂

  5. A Hill O' Beans says:
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    I get that Serge Ibaka attempting more threes has taken him a little farther from the basket this year and last, but has anyone noticed that his REB% this year has gotten pretty darn close to Andrea Bargnani’s career REB%. Which, in case you’re wondering, is bad. Of guys that are at least 6’10” and play at least 25 MPG he has the 4th worst REB% in the NBA. For some reason I thought he used to at least be average at rebounding, but maybe I’m wrong.

    • JB Gilpin

      JB Gilpin says:
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      @A Hill O’ Beans: hah yeah it’s bad. Either Durant and Westbrook are slashing or taking bad jumpers, then Kanter and Adams gobble up boards. Glad I traded Ibaka away when I did!

  6. patrickindo says:
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    what’s up guys, after a lot of grit and strategy i’m in the semi-finals after hanging around 14th place the whole season in my 16 team 9 cat h2h league.

    i’m losing 4-5 early in the week and losing points by quite a margin thanks to his devin booker and rodney hood going off -_____-” also my Harden only has 3 games this week and my other scorers are slumping right now in Jordan Clarkson, Reggie Jackson, and Pau Gasol. I’m thinking about ignoring the scoring cat while streaming but it’s still early in the week.

    Anyways, I have to get rid of my Salah Mejri after such high hopes last week. Waiver wire is looking pretty barren with Larkin, JaMychal Green, Raymond Felton, and Sean Kilpatrick all picked up this morning. J-Rich is long gone, as well as Nurkic, Leuer.. Waiver wire not looking great at all — #deep league problems.

    Some names that are getting minutes and are available include Andrew Nicholson, Alex Ajinca, Dewayne Dedmon, Justin Anderson, Bobby Portis (but only if Gasol is sidelined), the only Brooklyn Nets’ available is Karasev and Merkel Brown. Also thinking about Jae Crowder as soon as he’s able to play but seems kind of risky.

    I’m looking to use 1 move to get rid of Mejri and save my final 2 moves for the weekend depending on my needs.

    I’m thinking replace Mejri for an Orlando player as they have 3 games in 4 nights starting tomorrow. Between Nicholson and Dedmon who would you pick up? Also is a Jae Crowder pick up when he’s available to play a league-winning or league-losing move you think? It may take some time to ramp up his work load is what I’m thinking.

    • patrickindo says:
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      @patrickindo: just saw dwight powel is available, what do you think of him as a pick up (after getting 30 minutes tonight)? he has 2 games until the weekend; versus getting someone like Nicholson or Dedmon with 3 games

      • JB Gilpin

        JB Gilpin says:
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        @patrickindo: Oh nice, good work man! Uggghhh yeah hood getting hot again sucks…

        Yeah gambling on Jae Crowder is towards the top, I like Nicholson though especially since he plays tonight/Thur/Fri so you can get 3 games outta him and still have a move for Sat/Sun. LOLOLOL I wrote that before finishing through your comment. Gimme St. Nich.

        I’ll stick with him over Powell too, love Powell’s upside long term, but I don’t trust Carlisyle and these vast changes game in game out to rotation

        • patrickindo says:
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          @JB Gilpin: yup, gotta milk those schedules. Awesome, thanks man.

          • JB Gilpin

            JB Gilpin says:
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            @patrickindo: Hah nice, any time!

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