Saturday, February 16, 2013

Some Of Us Never Stop Competing!

Article by Michael Sanduso

Sports, professional or amateur, are a staple of North American society and culture and football, baseball, basketball and hockey has millions of fans who both play and follow the sport. Often they believe they can do so much better than coaches or general managers, and perhaps they have no problem sharing their emotions at the TV! They just know if they were in charge they could draft better players, win more games and bring home championships year after year. With the creation of fantasy sports leagues, fans now have a chance to put their money where their mouths are. No matter what sport is their favorite, fans are guaranteed to find a fantasy league to let them live out their dreams of wheeling, dealing and coaching the very best.

The thrill of competition is the main draw for fantasy sports fans. No matter the sport you are particularly interested in, there is a fantasy league available. Season-long, weekly and even daily options are available as a way to compete with friends and co-workers. Season-long leagues let fantasy GM's draft players and create a team, and make decisions all season long. Standings are kept weekly, and the team with the most points at season's end is the winner. GM's are usually allowed to trade some players during the season and acquire others through the waiver wire when other GM's drop players from their team. Weekly leagues pit players against each other for one week, with cash prizes awarded at week's end. Daily leagues are growing in popularity due to the quick turnaround for prizes. Players can compete daily against others for prizes and the thrill of victory.

It's currently estimated that over 30 million people in the United States and Canada play fantasy sports each year. NFL and NBA fans can draft the likes of Tom Brady and LeBron James and pit them against Peyton Manning and Kobe Bryant in dream matchups. To get started playing in these leagues an entry fee is usually required. While some leagues are free to join, most others require a player to open an account and deposit some money before playing. Fees can range from as little as $1 to $100 or more depending on the league.

So once someone has signed up for a fantasy league, what does it take to be a winner? Dedication, preparation, gut feelings and lots of good luck usually separate winners from losers. However, there are certain things that a player can do to greatly increase their chances for success. These include understanding the league rules, careful utilization of fantasy draft guides, monitoring sports channels for breaking news about injuries, drafting a few unknowns that might have breakthrough seasons and watching waiver wires closely to see who's available.

So for those who always dreamed of being a GM for their favorite sports team, fantasy leagues give them an opportunity to test their skills. With a seemingly endless number of leagues to choose from, the chance to defeat friends and co-workers is always there. And for those of us who never want to stop competing, that's music to our ears and money in our pockets!

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