Two years ago I saw an article on Grantland from Bill Simmons talking about an NFL Wins Pool that he and his friends play that looked simple and fun. With the NBA season right around the corner, plus my never ending desire to have action on as many things as possible, I decided to get together nine friends to create an NBA Wins Pool using the exact same format.
There’s only two things you really need to know about this league:
1. Each owner drafts three NBA teams and all you care about are wins. The owner with the most combined wins is your victor.
2. The draft isn’t a snake format but instead a unique drafting system that looks like this:
Team 1 — 1st pick, 20th pick, 26th pick
Team 2 — 2, 16, 29
Team 3 — 3, 13, 30
Team 4 — 4, 18, 25
Team 5 — 5, 15, 27
Team 6 — 6, 19, 22
Team 7 — 7, 11, 28
Team 8 — 8, 17, 21
Team 9 — 9, 14, 23
Team 10 — 10, 12, 24
We randomly selected where each owner would draft, and since this is our first year doing the league we really have no clue if there is an ideal draft spot. I ended up with the 6th slot, which I felt good about.
Since it is hard to get 10 people in the same place at the same time we opted to do this draft via email, which ending up being surprisingly easy. We finished the draft in less than two days and aside from the occasional pick of a team that was already drafted we ran into no issues. I created a Google Doc that I shared with the other owners that listed each owner, the draft pick, and their selection. This proved to be a very simple way to know who was drafting next, and which teams were selected.
Here’s a look at how our NBA Wins Pool draft shook out:
Pick – Owner – Team
1. Roberts – Oklahoma City Thunder
2 .Stafford – Chicago Bulls
3. Dan – Cleveland Cavs
4. Kiddo – San Antonio Spurs
5. Tim – LA Clippers
6. Rob – Dallas Mavericks
7. Greg – Golden State Warriors
8. Howie – Portland Trail Blazers
9. Neal – Toronto Raptors
10. Kevin – Houston Rockets
11. Greg – Washington Wizards
12. Kevin – Minnesota Timberwolves
13. Dan – Charlotte Hornets
14. Neal – Memphis Grizzlies
15. Tim – Miami Heat
16. Mark – New Orleans Pelicans
17. Howie – Phoenix Suns
18. Kiddo – Atlanta Hawks
19. Rob – Brooklyn Nets
20. Roberts – Denver Nuggets
21. Howie – Detroit Pistons
22. Rob – New York Knicks
23. Neal – Indiana Pacers
24. Kevin – Sacramento Kings
25. Kiddo – Los Angeles Lakers
26. Roberts – Orlando Magic
27. Tim – Boston Celtics
28. Greg – Utah Jazz
29. Mark – Milwaukee Bucks
30. Dan – Philadelphia 76ers
I ended up with the Dallas Mavericks, Brooklyn Nets, and New York Knicks on my squad. I felt like I got kinda screwed picking 6th instead of 5th as there is definitely a drop off in win potential between the Clippers and the Mavericks, at #19 I got the Nets but was targeting the Hawks, and at #22 I took the Knicks by default as the other options were equally undesirable.
On the plus side I’m a fan of Mark Cuban, Dirk, and the Mavs so I’m cool with rooting for them. Plus with the addition of the tag team Chandler and Chandler (Tyson and Parsons) the Mavs should be improved.
For the Nets, maybe Deron Williams will return to the form that had him neck and neck with Chris Paul for best point guard, and Brook Lopez will stay healthy (which is like asking for Sam Bowie to stay healthy). I could also watch this video of Joe Johnson breaking Paul Pierce’s ankles on loop, so that’s worth something.
As for the Knicks, I’m now all in on Carmelo Anthony and
JR Smith Jose Calderon Shane Larkin. In Zen Master I Trust!
The one real wildcard of the NBA Wins Pool draft was the Timberwolves going 12th. Maybe this is Ricky Rubio’s MVP season and Andrew Wiggins lights the NBA on fire, but it’s gonna be tough sledding in the West for such a young squad.
Now excuse me while I go pre-order my Carmelo Anthony MVP trophy.
Which of the 10 owners squads do you like the best? Give me your thoughts in the comments or on Twitter @BaconSports.
H/T: Bill Simmons