Greetings from San Juan, Puerto Rico! Finally found a good pocket of wi-fi so it's time to break down all that went down in Fantasyland last weekend.
First and foremost, kudos to a few of my fantasy sleepers having nice games, like my man Dominic Oduro who got on the scoresheet quickly in his new uniform.
As far as my fantasy weekend went, it was incredibly bittersweet. Saturday, I was sitting pretty at 52 points after all of the matches, ranked 781st out of 17,000-plus, and was winning my head-to-head matchup in MLS Fantasyland's official league.
On top of that, I still had Thierry Henry (my captain) and Will Johnson still to play. I'm thinking I'm primed for an all-timer of a fantasy weekend. And then, they combine for only 3 points, I lose my game, and drop to 8,000-something in the overall standings. Not happy.
I hope your weekend went well, and that you've already started looking at your Week 2 lineups, and that perhaps our little community here has helped you out a little bit!
Let's take a look back at First Kick and who were the Stars and Scrubs in Fantasyland.
Mike Magee, LAG (18pts). Mike Magee went all, "Landon, stay in Cambodia" on us last weekend. If you had him in your squad you're extremely happy, and just as shocked as the rest of us. If you're not shocked by his performance, you're lying to yourself.
Graham Zusi, SKC (14pts). A little more predictable here, with Zusi getting off to a fast start in Philadelphia. He's going to play a huge role in Sporting KC's march to MLS Cup, so if he's not on your team yet, he should be.
Josh Williams, CLB (14pts). Williams pretty much hit for the cycle last week as a defender: clean sheet, played all 90 minutes, and scored a goal. Can't get much better than that right? At ONLY $5.1m this week, he's a nice sleeper pick-up.
Eddie Johnson/Chris Wondolowski/Thierry Henry/Will Bruin (1pt). It's so hard to consistently score points as a striker in soccer, so you can't be terribly hard on them from week to week. However, given these were four of the most sought-after forwards in Fantasyland heading into the season, it's slightly disappointing they didn't contribute.
Sal Zizzo/Will Johnson (1pt.) Tough opening weekend for the Portland duo, which was surprising considering how amazing the match was. I still expect good things from the Timbers this year, so don't panic just yet.
WHO TO START/WHO TO SIT
Interesting weekend of games coming up, and seeing as it's only week two, you'd be pretty crazy to blow up your fantasy squad after just one week. However, if you're looking for a little added pop, or want to switch a couple things up, here are a few quick-hit suggestions:
START: Jerry Bengtson. New England opens their season in Chicago on Saturday night, and with the Fire coming off giving up 4 goals to Los Angeles, you'd have to feel confident of a decent game from the Honduran international.
START: Matt Besler/Aurelien Collin. Pretty favorable match up for Sporting Kansas City heading to Toronto. TFC doesn't exactly light up the scoreboard, and should have trouble against such a strong SKC side.
START: Raul Fernandez. The FC Dallas keeper looked incredibly strong last week and led Fantasyland goalkeepers with 9 points. With a good matchup against an absolutely in shambles Chivas USA squad, Fernandez is worth the $5.5m.
SIT: Kyle Beckerman. This really has more to do with matchup than it does form. D.C. United plays a very physical, often unattractive brand of soccer (see: last week) and this is the type of match I can see getting slowed way down, and becoming chippy at times. It's difficult to predict yellow cards and such, but this seems like a game where Beckerman could get a little over-the-top.
SIT: Darren Mattocks. The Whitecaps, at times, looked incredibly dangerous going forward last week. They were fast, dynamic, and menacing against Toronto FC. However, this Columbus defense is VERY good. I expect Mattocks to struggle a bit, like he did last week (only 2 points).
SIT: San Jose/NYRB defenders. After watching NYRB's incredible match in Portland, and knowing how talented and offensive San Jose can be, this game feels like a 2-2 or 3-2 shootout to me. I expect a full-flowing, attractive game of soccer between the two, and that spells trouble for the fantasy hopes of defenders on both sides.
Hope you are enjoying your fantasy experience so far in 2013, and I hope that I can help a little. I'm definitely not an expert, or guru by any means, but I've certainly seen my fair share of MLS soccer for the better part of two decades!
What do you guys think? Who do you like/dislike? Let's get the chatter going in the comments and see if we can put together a dynamite XI!
Adios from Puerto Rico!