Fantasy golf is a thing

With the lack of options the last few months sports related, I, as most fantasy and sports betting fans, have been clamoring for something to bet on.

In comes the PGA Tour and the return of fantasy golf. I will not claim in this article to be a Fantasy Golf expert. I will give some insight though that has resulted in 3 weeks of events and 3 weeks of better than min cashes in all 3 events. I will give you my insight in what I look for in a golfer to pick, and also give some guys I am looking for big things from this week.

First I use FantasyDraft as my go to site. They are a smaller fantasy site, but have smaller fields and create a fan friendly environment to give everyone a shot at winning. They offer rake free fantasy. They do this by making it a membership site. But if you spend less than $100 a month in entry fees, you get to play for FREE (outside of buy-ins). I recommend anyone playing to check them out. They also have a FreeRoll this week for golf that is a great starter test for you.

Things to look for first when picking golfers.

-The 3 main stat categories I focus on are top 10’s made, FPPT (fantasy points per tournament), and cuts made versus tournaments played.

-On FantasyDraft you pick 7 players but they cut your lowest score… so picking players that make the cut week in and week out definitely helps your scoring big time. Players cut cannot get you anywhere. So checking the last few tournaments and the players results help big time.

-Top 10’s are important as well. More top 10’s equal higher point totals of course.

-And FPPT… the guys making the most birdies and eagles and the least amount of bogies will rack up higher point totals.

-The next thing to look at is the previous 2 3 years at the tournament. Golfers are creatures of habits. If they seem to finish top 5 always at the same event and course, it is a good person to choose. If they have made 9 of last 10 cuts… but missed the cut the last 3 years at a specific event, skip that guy.

-Weather is another key to look at. If the weather is going to be good, pick away. But when a colder, windy, rainy weekend is in the forecast, stick to steady hitters and guys that are most consistently hitting fairways and greens…. Bad weather is not always good for the bombers.

Onto this week and the Rocket Mortgage Classic in Detroit Michigan. Last year was the first year for the event. And most of the top 25 ranked players skipped the event, leaving Nate Lashley to win the event by 6 strokes (-25). It was his first PGA win.

This year, being only the 4th event since the tour stopped because of Covid, more big names are in the field than last season. Bryson DeChambeau, Webb Simpson, and Patrick Reed lead the field. When building the lineup you have to think of at least one of them to be apart of it.

I built my roster around the past champion Nate Lashley, Webb Simpson, and Hideke Matsuyama. Matsuyama missed the cut last week in his first event since the return of a tour. But he is a consistent top tier player that most likely will not miss multiple cuts in a row. He has made 11 out of his last 13 cuts along with 4 top 10’s in those 13 events.

Here is my full roster… I recommend making a change or two to it… we do not need 100 of the same lineup entered here.

-Nate Lashley, Webb Simpson, Doc Redman, Wesley Bryan, Adam Hadwin, Lucas Glover, Hideke Matsuyama.

After better than min cashing for 3 straight weeks… since I am writing about it this week for the first time… we will finish dead last…. hopefully not!

Comments, Questions, Thoughts? Let me know on twitter @ Beardaknowledge

Thanks for reading and following!

Matt Klentak Media Zoom Call Recap

Phillies General Manager Matt Klentak held a zoom call with the media today. Here are some of the highlights and tidbits in no particular order from that call.

-A small handful of players will be on the Covid list to start Spring Training 2.0. As more tests results come in, a few more may be added. You must have 2 negative tests to be reinstated and permitted to be with the team after a positive test.

-Zack Wheeler will leave the team for the birth of his child. He will not be taking an extended leave though.

-The Phillies will most likely not use a set DH. It will be rotated between the bench players and some of the everyday fielders to keep bats in the lineup but get some rest from the field.

-Andrew McCutchen is 100%. He finished his rehab about 3 weeks ago and seems to be ready to go.

-Alex Bohm and Spencer Howard will contribute at some point. But they will not be pushed.

-None of the Phillies have informed Klentak they plan to “opt out”

-They did not fill all 60 spots yet becuase it is easier to add then subtract. They plan on adding another catcher or 2 in the coming days.

-Odubel Herrera was considered for the 60 man player pool and will continue to be considered.

-JT’s extension is still too early to call on. There is too much uncertainty right now in baseball and in the long haul. They were not permitted to talk extension with him during the shut down.

Opinion: From what I can gather most of this is as expected. Two things stuck out to me as I followed along to several reporters accounts of the call. First Andrew McCutchen being 100%. That is huge to this team and they were much better last year with him at the top of their lineup than without him. And secondly the JT’s extension talk. I do not like to read too much into it, but it may seem Klentak is dragging his feet a bit there. If JT walks at the end of the season, it will be a complete disaster for the franchise. There is no way that the Phillies front office can allow that to happen, no matter what the financial situation is throughout baseball. Matt Klentak sounds so unsure of the situation. This has to be where John Middleton steps in like he did with signing Bryce Harper and get the deal done. If Realmuto leaves the Phillies in the offseason I can guarantee Klentak will no longer be employeed by the Phillies either

All in all though baseball is almost back… time to start breaking down the roster in the coming weeks! Let me know your thoughts and opinions on the call, JT’s contract, and all things Phillies!

Philly Needs A Reminder Of Its Boxing Greatness

WIP deserves a lot of credit for the GOAT of Broad Street list. They generated content and controversy by letting the fans do their thing.

There are plenty of issues with the list, but perhaps the most glaring is the omission of one of the premier Philadelphia athletes, whose career spanned 28 years. In that span he became one of his sport’s greatest champions and owns several records. Philadelphia forgot about Bernard Hopkins.

That’s right. Bernard Hopkins, according to the Philadelphia fan base, is not of one of the 20 greatest athletes of the last 50 years from the city. Frankly that’s just wrong. I’ve said so on Twitter, and I even called in (first time in a long time) to say that list was incomplete without Hopkins. The reasons as to why Bernard Hopkins belongs on the list is nearly is along as his career. So let’s go through some of the reasons.

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Career Longevity

After Hopkins was released from jail in 1988 he jumped into the ring, losing his pro debut. He wouldn’t lose again until 1993, against the legendary pound for pound great Roy Jones Jr. His career from then on would be mostly wins with a rare loss here and there. Through his 28 year long career he would only lose 8 times. Over his 67 pro fights, he had 36 fights that had a world title on the line. That means Hopkins spent 53% of his career with a title on the line. The majority of one of the longest careers of a pro athlete ever was spent at the top of the food chain in both the middleweight and light heavyweight division. He’s also the oldest boxer ever at the age of 49 to hold a world title.

Only Bobby Clarke can touch Hopkins’s career longevity, and that’s if you include his time as the Flyers general manager and senior vice president.

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Strength of Competiton 

We don’t need a ton of words of this one. It’s just a list of world champions that Bernard Hopkins faced in his career.

Sergey Kovalev, Beibut Shumenov, Tavoris Cloud, Chad Dawson twice, Jean Pascal twice, Roy Jones Jr. twice, Kelly Pavlik, Joe Calzaghe, Ronald “Winky” Wright, Antonio Tarver, Jermain Taylor, Oscar De La Hoya, Robert Allen three times, William Joppy, Felix Trinidad, Keith Holmes, Glen Johnson, and John David Jackson. That’s 23 fights against the very best competition has to offer.

Considering the nature of boxing, Hopkins facing this many quality opponents and beating the majority of them is astounding.

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Records & Accolades 

As mentioned before Hopkins is the oldest man to own a world title. During his time in the ring he was regarded as one of the smartest and best defensive fighters in boxing. He defended the IBF middleweight title 20 times against 17 different fighters, which are both records. He was named Fighter of the Year by The Ring Magazine and the Boxing Writers Association in 2001. In 2004 he defeated Oscar De Lay Hoya to become the first man ever to hold the world title of all four major sanctioning bodies of boxing. The Ring has him ranked 3rd on their list of best middleweights of the last 50 years, and Boxrec.com has Hopkins as their 7th best pound for pound fighter ever. He was also a lineal light heavyweight champion as well.

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This man knocked down Ali…and you think McNabb is better!?

He along with Smokin Joe Fraizer, who should’ve finished higher than 13th should be remembered and revered more by the Philly faithful. Frazier was twice in the consensus fight of the year, (with the Thrilla in Manilla being one of the greatest fights of all time,) and was the winner of the Fight of the Century, where he beat Muhammad Ali. Both men excelled in ways against top competition in ways the other members of the GOAT list can’t possibly match.

On the next list, the fans must do better. Presently you can all start with supporting the Philly fighters all in line for world title opportunities like Tevin Farmer, Danny Garcia, Stephen Fulton, Jaron “Boots” Ennis, and Julian Williams who are all in line. You could also check out local shows and see some fantastic athletes at shows like Joe Hand’s Xcite Fight Night’s at Parx Casino, Ragin Babe’s “Philly Special”, and the others that pop up in and around the are.

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Great image from @theChampside on Twitter

Philadelphia was a boxing town, and it will be again.

Newton New to Patriot Land

Sunday evening, Adam Shefter reported that Cam Newton signed a “one year, incentive-laden,” deal with the New England Patriots, which will reportedly be a maximum of 7.5 million dollars

After 9 seasons, Newton was released from the Carolina Panthers on March 24th and was sidelined the majority of the 2019 season due to a foot injury.

The former No. 1 overall pick, 2010 Heisman Trophy Winner, and 2015 NFL MVP will join a Tom Brady-less Patriots quarterback room consisting of; Jarrett Stidhim, Brian Hoyer, J’Mar Smith, and Brian Lewerke.

Will the Patriots dynasty survive without Tom Brady? Can Cam Newton fit Bill Belichick’s system? Will Cam Newton make a comeback to continue building his legacy? These are among the questions surrounding the upcoming season.

A Tobias Talk

UPDATE: Since I wrote this on Feb 25, the 76ers played 7 games up until the stoppage in play. In those 7 games, Tobias averaged 22 points per game while shooting 36% from 3 on 5 threes per game.

The Sixers have some problems. It’s pretty clear for a team with championship expectations, being the 6th seed a week before the all-star break is not good, simply put. That being said there has to be some kind of problem or problem. As fans, we usually want to pinpoint and fix the problems, usually using hindsight.

I think firing Brett Brown is usually the most popular fix. While that could come to fruition my guess it’s after the season. Then we look at players and fit. Al Horford to the bench and staggering his and Joel’s minutes to limit the time both of them are on court with Ben at the same time. Which could very well fix some problems? Maybe it fixes everything, I don’t know.

What I do know is TOBIAS HARRIS IS NOT THE PROBLEM.

Say it again, TOBIAS HARRIS IS NOT THE PROBLEM.

Tobias Harris despite has been one of the more consistent players on this team. He also is not “just ok” or an average player.

Here is how Harris stacks up as compared to an average SF according to realgm.com.

 

As you can see he is clearly above average in most categories in comparisons to an average small forward. All this being said, Tobias is naturally a power forward. Tobias is clearly not average or just Ok while playing outside his more natural position a lot of the time.

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Some quick numbers in regards to Harris’s season :

  • 19.2 points per game
  • 47% from the field
  • 36% from 3 (this can be adjusted (trimmed mean)  if you want assume Harris’ 6 game stretch that he shot 1-24 from 3 is an anomaly. We can take out that stretch and take out his best 6 game stretch where he shot 13-26 and it leaves you with 38%.)

Some more numbers:

  • Home: 19.1 PPG, 49% from the field, and 38% from 3
  • Away: 19.2 PPG, 45% from the field, and 34% from 3
  • Vs Top 10 record: 19.1 PPG, 49% from the field, and 42% from 3
  • Vs Top 10 Defense: 19.9 PPG, 44% from the field, and 41% from 3

3 POINT SHOOTING

A big knock on Tobias this season has been his 3 point percentage. 36% is an obvious drop off from his 43% he was shooting with the Clippers for the first half of last season, again Tobias trimmed mean is about 38%. To put in perspective what 43% from 3 is, Steph Curry is a career 43% 3 point shooter. While 43% may be an unrealistic goal, I think a good goal should be somewhere between 37-41% with the hope it hits more towards 40%. That being said, over the past 30 games Harris’ has shot 39% on 3.7 attempts per game. Prior to those 30 games, I have broken down into 6 game stretches, where Harris shot 40%, 4%, 58%, 29%, and 37% respectively.

Over the past 30 games, Tobias has seemed to settle into his 3 point shot. It would be nice to see him elevate his attempts to closer to 5 or 6 a game, but I can live with 40% on 4 3’s a game. 

tobias for 3

Tobias doesn’t jump off the page at you as a 170 mil dollar man. And he does have his deficiencies. But he is the third scorer that this team needs. In what was a very inconsistent start for Harris, he has seemed to really settle down over the past 30 games. Bringing his 3 pt percentage up after that awful cold streak and overall has been pretty consistent elsewhere. The Sixers are a better team with him on the court than off, as you can see the Sixers offensive rating is +3.3 difference with him on the court.

With Ben possibly being out for some time, Tobias is going to need to step up his scoring,  as will other players. Tobias was the lead man for the Clippers last season, and he definitely has shown the ability to score in bunches, hopefully, he can carry a large chunk of the scoring load down the stretch because the team is going to need it.