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Daily blurbs from the Guru
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7/12 - Hall of Fame Day!

It’s once again time to recognize those who excelled during the past year in various RotoGuru competitions. I am pleased to announce the RotoGuru Hall of Fame Class of 2015-16:

  • Evan Pasquali, champion, 2015 RotoGuru Invitational Baseball Challenge
  • Bill Miller, champion, 2015 GuruGolf
  • Paul Tani, champion, 2015 RotoGuru Invitational Football Challenge
  • Nadim Mahassen, champion, 2015-16 RotoGuru Football Pickoff
  • Triple Stack, champion, 2016 RotoGuru Market Madness
  • Luke Casey, champion, 2016 RotoGuru Market Madness (excl. basket units)
  • Dave Richards, champion, 2015-16 RotoGuru Invitational Hoops Challenge
For a more detailed recap and brief bios of these enshrines, please visit the RotoGuru Hall of Fame. Congrats to all of these competitors.

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3/14 - RotoGuru Market Madness is up and running!

This is the oldest of all of the RotoGuru game formats, now in its 19th year.

If you are new to the Market Madness format, don’t despair when you read the scoring rules. Even if you don’t “get it”, fill out a set of picks and try it for a year. Once you’ve lived through a tournament, you’ll catch on, and be much better prepared next year. If you want a few simple tips, try these:

  • For your shorts, look for first round upsets, and short the loser. For example, if you think that Austin Peay(16) will beat Kansas(1), then short the Jayhawks. You might also try shorting one or two of the top seed baskets (1-3). For example, shorting the #1 seeds gives you plenty of opportunities to profit from an early upset - as long as the tournament doesn't go too “chalky”!
  • For longs, pick the 4 teams you expect to survive to the Final Four. In many instances, it's good to take those teams not only as single teams, but also in their basket forms - unless you think the other teams in those baskets are really overrated.
  • Pick one or two double-digit seeds as longs. These will pay off well if they make it to the Sweet 16.
Actually, my best advice is to use the scoring simulator. Pick each of the games as you would for a typical bracket, and then let the simulator calculate the returns under your scenario. Use those returns as a basis for your picks - picking your longs from the top of the listing, and your shorts from the bottom. Or let the simulator do that for you (if you're running it while logged in to the contest site).

Every year, there is a lot of attrition between the contest registrations and the actual entries. It's not unusual for as many as 25%-30% of the registrants to not submit a set of picks. I'm sure that some of that is simply forgetfulness, but I suspect a larger issue is the confusion factor. One of the dominant feedbacks that I get from people who play for the first year is that they felt pretty befuddled when making selections, but once they see how the tournament and the scoring play out, they can't wait for next year. The simulator was designed to help you get over that initial hump.

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3/8 - I discovered that some DNP games were incorrectly being included as games played for some players in the various RotoGuru NBA stats reports. This caused some per-game averages to be understated.

I think I have it fixed. But please let me know if you think otherwise. If a player does not appear in a game, it should not be included for determination of per-game averages.

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2/9 - The seasons are a-changing.

With the conclusion of the NFL playoffs, the champion of Football Pickoff is ISLAM, who has now capped off a ridiculous three-peat. This was the tightest contest ever, with only 7 points separating the top three contestants. Prize winners will be notified by email sometime during the next week. For a full listing of available prizes, see item 7 of the rules.

I've made a few enhancements to the NBA data file that is now available on s subscription basis. See this thread for a description of the file, including the enhanced version [post 4].

GuruGolf should be launched this coming weekend. The official announcement will be made in the RotoGuru Golf Forum.

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1/9 - Many DailyHoopsData and RotoGuru users already pull down NBA DFS data in text format from various sources. This allows them to manipulate and massage the raw data to meet individual needs.

I've developed a consolidated text file that includes game-by-game player history for the entire 2015-16 NBA season. DFS points, salaries, and positions are shown for each gameday for the four affiliated DFS sites. Data on games started, minutes played, and final team scores are also provided. If you've been cobbling together your database from multiple sources, this file might be your one-stop shopping solution.

For the moment, I'm making this file free to all. However, it will eventually be a premium service, for which I'll probably charge a flat $20 (per user) for daily access throughout the remainder of current NBA season, including the playoffs. I need to do this because advertising is one of the primary revenue sources for the site, and those who access this data file will be getting it ad-free.

The interface and mechanism for a subscription service has not yet been developed, so there is no opportunity to sign up yet. Until that is set up, you can access it for free using this url:
http://rotoguru1.com/cgi-bin/nba-dhd-2016.pl

The data fields in each line are colon delimited, with data headings in the top line. Hopefully, most of the data elements are self explanatory. If you have feedback or questions, please use the related thread in the RotoGuru Hoops Message Forum.

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1/4/16 - Happy New Year!

The NFL regular season is in the books. Be aware that, as in prior years, I will not be continuing statistical reporting for NFL DFS games during the playoffs. Frankly, I don’t have access to NFL player stats during the playoffs. So, you’re on your own. And with no more than four games per weekend, you really ought be able to figure out your lineups without reams of supporting data.

Football Pickoff will continue throughout the playoffs, however. So keep on pickin'.

Congrats to Gurupie twolves, who got hot at the right time and marched to the RIFC championship from the #6 seed position. His score in week #15 of 227.16 was (I believe) the highest scoring week for any RIFC season.

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10/28 - I've spot-checked a number of reports this morning, and - at least on the surface - they appear to be working properly. But the devil's often in the details. So this is where all of you can help. If you find any apparent errors or glitches, please let me know.

Here is a list of the most popular reports:

Many pages provide options for text formatted output (usually SCSV delimited).

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10/7 - Time for another “monthly blurb.”

First, congrats to Pablo’s Peapods, champion of the 2015 RIBC. I’d like to assemble the final standings of all of the 2015 RIBC qualifying leagues. If you participated in one of them, please send me a link to your league standings page, and I’ll get it posted in the forum.

Congratulations also to GuruGolf champion Bilmill, 2015 champion. This is Bill’s 4th GuruGolf title, having also won in 2006, 2007, and 2012. Probably not just luck!

RIHC basketball leagues have been formed, and drafts will be getting underway in the next week or so. Check in at the basketball forums to follow their progress.

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9/5 - Football’s in the air!

I’ve been quietly getting the various football tools up and running for 2015. There’s more to be done, and some data needs to be scrubbed, but here’s a quick rundown

  • Sortable Stats - preseason salaries with prior year regular season stats. Fanduel, DraftKings, and FireLeague data has been loaded. DraftDay and StarFantasy still to be done
  • Assimilator - for Fireleague only. One of the oldest tools ever produced at RotoGuru, originally developed for the Small World game. FireLeague offers the current incarnation of that game format.
  • Football Pickoff - back for the 17th consecutive season!
  • RIFC Draft Rationales - the draft itself will complete this weekend.

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7/19 - Hall of Fame Day!

It’s once again time to recognize those who excelled during the past year in various RotoGuru competitions. I am pleased to announce the RotoGuru Hall of Fame Class of 2014-15:

  • Bruce Scott, champion, 2014 RotoGuru Invitational Baseball Challenge
  • Neil Crowell, champion, 2014 GuruGolf
  • Terence Wilson, champion, 2014 RotoGuru Invitational Football Challenge
  • Nadim Mahassen, champion, 2014-15 RotoGuru Football Pickoff
  • nwspring, champion, 2015 RotoGuru Market Madness
  • Craig Morris, champion, 2015 RotoGuru Market Madness (excl. basket units)
  • Scott Sternberg, champion, 2014-15 RotoGuru Invitational Hoops Challenge
For a more detailed recap and brief bios of these enshrines, please visit the RotoGuru Hall of Fame. Congrats to all of these competitors.

         Comment on this blurb

6/5 - Wow! Almost 2 months since the last blurb. Actually, that’s not entirely accurate, since I’ve been posting some updates on DailyBaseballData.com, where most of my attention is during baseball season. But I figured I should probably provide some updates here as well, for those who don’t typically venture to that domain.

  • If you go to the front page at DBD, you’ll see a panel in the upper right that lists the day’s starting lineups as I get them from my stats provider. Often, lineups are provided 3-4 hours in advance of game time.
  • The RotoGuru daily fantasy point report is now picking up live stats, including starting lineups. This page also provides an opportunity to download data in SCSV (semi-colon separated values), for this who want to import data into a spreadsheet.
  • The DBD live stats report has also been enhanced, with more sorting options (by team, or by lineup order). You may find that report format more suitable for smartphone display, as the width is narrower and there are fewer advertising graphics.
All of these reports are feeding off of the same underlying stats feed, which is generally updated at 10 minute intervals once game action starts. If you are looking for sources of info on starting lineups or live stats, you may want to check out these three links to see whether any of the formats work well for you.

Meanwhile, RotoGuru and DBD have been getting some recent notoriety as well. I recently had a lengthy interview which was published at oligolf.com. And the Daily Baseball Data site has been highlighted as as a useful resource in two recent books written by Jonathan Bales, including Fantasy Baseball for Smart People. Always nice to get free, favorable recognition!

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4/7 - Congrats to Market Madness Contest winner nwspring with a score of G$883. The winner of the Basket-Free Contest is Chuck Rules???, with a score of G$331.

The winning entry was long Kentucky, Wichita State, Arizona, Michigan State, and Duke, plus the #1 and #7 seed baskets, plus the Big 10, SEC, and Pac 12 conference basket. He had only one net negative score on his long side (SEC basket) and only one on the short side (Gonzaga).

The best possible score this year would have been G$1124. Interestingly, Kentucky appears only in the form of the #1 seed basket (long). The other three final four teams are included as longs, as well as their seed baskets (#1 & #7) and conferences (Big 10, ACC). Longs also included NC State[8], the #8 seed basket, and the Pac 12 basket. The best short this year was the Big 12 seed basket, while the top scoring long was the Big 10 (with two teams in the final four). Here is the complete list of units, sorted by net return.

Prize winners will be notified by email within the next week. Thanks to all for continuing to support this oldest of all RotoGuru Contests.

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3/20 - There are 311 entrants in this year’s Market Madness Contest (about the same as last year.) I've posted a sortable summary of 2015 unit selections. Click on any linked column heading to sort by that column. A few quick observations:

  • Favorite shorts are Kansas, Big East basket, Georgetown, #4 seed bracket, and Virginia
  • Favorite longs are Kentucky, Arizona, Wichita State, Michigan State, and Iowa State (oops!).
  • Kentucky was the most active unit, with 177 longs and 30 shorts. Still, that means that Kentucky does not appear (in its pure team form) on one-third of all slates.
  • Every unit had some activity. The two units with the lightest activity were Belmont and North Dakota State, each with on long and one short.
Meanwhile, the four RIBC league drafts are all underway. Rationales for all picks in the top RIBC league are being posted (on approx. a two-round lag) in this thread.

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3/17 - RotoGuru Market Madness is up and running, and awaiting your contest entries!

If you are new to the Market Madness format, don’t despair when you read the scoring rules. Even if you don’t “get it”, fill out a set of picks and try it for a year. Once you’ve lived through a tournament, you’ll catch on, and be much better prepared next year. If you want a few simple tips, try these:

  • For your shorts, look for first round upsets, and short the loser. For example, if you think that Coastal Carolina(16) will beat Wisconsin(1), then short the Badgers. You might also try shorting one or two of the top seed baskets (1-3). For example, shorting the #1 seeds gives you plenty of opportunities to profit from an early upset - as long as the tournament doesn't go too “chalky”!
  • For longs, pick the 4 teams you expect to survive to the Final Four. In many instances, it's good to take those teams not only as single teams, but also in their basket forms - unless you think the other teams in those baskets are really overrated.
  • Pick one or two double-digit seeds as longs. These will pay off well if they make it to the Sweet 16.
Actually, my best advice is to use the scoring simulator. Pick each of the games as you would for a typical bracket, and then let the simulator calculate the returns under your scenario. Use those returns as a basis for your picks - picking your longs from the top of the listing, and your shorts from the bottom. Or let the simulator do that for you (if you're running it while logged in to the contest site).

Every year, there is a lot of attrition between the contest registrations and the actual entries. It's not unusual for as many as 25%-30% of the registrants to not submit a set of picks. I'm sure that some of that is simply forgetfulness, but I suspect a larger issue is the confusion factor. One of the dominant feedbacks that I get from people who play for the first year is that they felt pretty befuddled when making selections, but once they see how the tournament and the scoring play out, they can't wait for next year. The simulator was designed to help you get over that initial hump.

         Comment on this blurb

2/23 - GuruGolf has launched for 2015, returning for its 11th season. Created in 2005, the general format has been largely unchanged over that period, offering a salary cap style with both best-ball and worst-ball scoring. While there are a variety of fantasy golf games available today, most do not offer the best-ball format, where your golf foursome performs as an integrated unit, and where a well synchronized team performance can outdo a group of four high performers who all tend to birdie the same holes. The game is free to play, so if you are interested, check it out. This week’s event, The Honda Classic, tees off on Thursday morning, so get your foursome set by then.

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2/3 - Congrats to Football Pickoff Champion ISLAM, who outdid Seattle by winning back-to-back championships. He also won the Midseason championship, so that prize will roll down to midseason runner-up Gman40, and the playoff champion was Hawkeye, the only entrant who correctly picked all 11 playoff game winners.

All prize winners will be notified by email by the middle of February. See item 7 in the rules for a listing of all prizes. Thanks to all who played, and please come back next year.

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1/28 - Today I am introducing a new DFS affiliate: Star Fantasy Leagues. Although formed in 2012, this site is now fully operational and poised for growth. They cap the amount of lineups a user can enter into any single contest, deliberately keeping their contests smaller as many players are not interested in playing a 90,000 person tournament. Daily contests are now offered for NBA and NHL, and (of course) MLB and NFL contests will also be offered in-season. In addition to a variety daily contest formats, SFL offers a full season league platform for traditional fantasy players. Baseball leagues will begin forming during spring training.

For those who played NBA DFS contests at DraftStreet over the past years, Star provides an almost seamless transition, as the point formula for NBA contests is the same (see scoring formula). That also makes it convenient to integrate into the RotoGuru arsenal of analytical tools, as that scoring formula has already been tracked (in the background) all season, in spite of DraftStreet’s demise. I’ve started picking up NBA contest salary history for Star since mid-January. So you can immediately take advantage of tools and/or reports such as Daily Fantasy Points, sortable stats, and individual player histories. If you would like to try out the site, please register using this link. You can register for free and immediately play in daily freerolls. If/when you decide to make a deposit, you can get a 20% deposit bonus using code SFL20.

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1/15 - The 2015 MLB schedule is now available in spreadsheet format. The Excel spreadsheet has two formats, each displayed in a separate sheet - one with dates in a column, and the other transposed with dates in a row. Suit yourself. The spreadsheet can be downloaded here: MLB_schedule_2015.xls. (Note that this spreadsheet will not be updated during the season to adjust for postponements.)

HTML formatting is also available using the standard MLB Schedule Grid Display Generator. This tool provides several formatting options, and will be updated during the season to adjust for rescheduled games.

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Click here for prior daily blurbs, by month:

2014: All year

2013: December . . . November . . . October . . . September . . . August . . . July . . . June . . . May . . . April . . . March . . . February . . . January

2012: December . . . November . . . October . . . September . . . August . . . July . . . June . . . May . . . April . . . March . . . February . . . January

2011: December . . . November . . . October . . . September . . . August . . . July . . . June . . . May . . . April . . . March . . . February . . . January

2010: December . . . November . . . October . . . September . . . August . . . July . . . June . . . May . . . April . . . March . . . February . . . January

2009: December . . . November . . . October . . . September . . . August . . . July . . . June . . . May . . . April . . . March . . . February . . . January

2008: December . . . November . . . October . . . September . . . August . . . July . . . June . . . May . . . April . . . March . . . February . . . January

2007: December . . . November . . . October . . . September . . . August . . . July . . . June . . . May . . . April . . . March . . . February . . . January

2006: December . . . November . . . October . . . September . . . August . . . July . . . June . . . May . . . April . . . March . . . February . . . January

2005: December . . . November . . . October . . . September . . . August . . . July . . . June . . . May . . . April . . . March . . . February . . . January

2004: December . . . November . . . October . . . September . . . August . . . July . . . June . . . May . . . April . . . March . . . February . . . January

2003: December . . . November . . . October . . . September . . . August . . . July . . . June . . . May . . . April . . . March . . . February . . . January

2002: December . . . November . . . October . . . September . . . August . . . July . . . June . . . May . . . April . . . March . . . February . . . January

2001: December . . . November . . . October . . . September . . . August . . . July . . . June . . . May . . . April . . . March . . . February . . . January

2000: December . . . November . . . October . . . September . . . August . . . July . . . June . . . May . . . April . . . March . . . February . . . January

1999: December . . . November . . . October . . . September . . . August . . . July . . . June . . . May . . . April . . . March . . . February . . . January

1998: December . . . November . . . October . . . September . . . August . . . July . . . June . . . May . . . April . . . March


RotoGuru is produced by Dave Hall (a.k.a. the Guru), an avid fantasy sports player. He is not employed by any of the fantasy sports games discussed within this site, and all opinions expressed are solely his own. Questions or comments are welcome, and should be emailed to Guru<davehall@rotoguru2.com>.

 
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