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Secrets to Being the Good Sport in Your Fantasy Sports League

playing fantasy sportsOnce upon a time, I thought fantasy sports leagues were just for bored people who couldn't actually play a sport. Fantasy players, my apologies! I didn't realize how much work goes into tracking all these real players' stats and plotting your next move or just how legit it is.

According to the Fantasy Sports Trade Association (yes, they have their own association ... fancy schmancy!), there are as many as 27.7 million people playing in one of these leagues on an average week. Some of them are playing for nine hours a week! And some are paying money for the whole thing.

I'm curious about wading in, but so intimidated I decided to ask for a little help on how not to be the bad sport of my new fantasy sports league. Fortunately, my friend Brett Singer -- blogger at Daddy Tips, commissioner of his fantasy football league, and all around nice guy -- was willing to spill on how to not be the jerk in your league.

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What do you absolutely not do lest you tick off your fellow players?

People who give up mid-season are a buzz-kill for fantasy sports players. If even one fantasy owner can't be bothered to put a fantasy team on the fantasy field, it screws up everyone else's real fun. For example, in the NFL, each real team gets a week off at some point during the season. It's up to each fantasy owner to submit a complete fantasy roster every week. If someone doesn't do that, they could hand an easy win to their opponent, and maybe knock someone out of the fantasy playoffs.

Are there actually ways to be a good gloater?

You have to know who you're playing with. Some guys (in my league, it's all guys, although I realize women play fantasy sports as well) can take more ribbing than others. Depending on the league, there may be money involved, and sometimes people can be a bit more sensitive because of that. And sometimes people can be jerks. No one in my league, of course. But I've heard stories. As with any gloating, being actually clever usually helps. Saying, "Nyah-nyah, I won, you lost, you suck" is kind of lame. Although, as with fart humor, "nyah-nyah" can be funny if used properly.

So what SHOULD you do in order to be a good fellow fantasy player?

Fantasy sports takes time -- I know that sounds silly, but it does. "Owners" are expected to at least field a full team every week and pay attention to NFL schedule changes, like the Thursday games (which are totally annoying for fantasy football, but they didn't ask me). That's why I've never participated in any fantasy sports other than football. It's a fairly short season, and with a few exceptions, all of the real games are on Sundays. With baseball and basketball, there's a lot more to keep track of.

Are you game for signing up for a fantasy sports league?

 

Image via Elvert Barnes/Flickr

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