Sport Of Fantasy

Sport of fantasy

Fantasy sport, often known as rotisserie sport or roto, any of a variety of games that allow a person to play a virtual game or season of a sport. In fantasy sports, fans take on the roles of both general manager and field manager for their team, assembling a squad through a draft and trades and assembling lineups in pursuit of the highest statistical output. Fantasy baseball and fantasy gridiron football are the two most popular fantasy sports in the United States, where the bulk of fantasy sports are played.

Baseball was the first sport to be used for fantasy purposes, as it is best suited to the concepts of the game due to its thorough yet accessible scorecards and long statistical record. One of the earliest forerunners of fantasy baseball was the APBA board game, which was introduced in 1951 by entrepreneur Dick Seitz (American Professional Baseball Association). (The APBA was preceded by All-Star Baseball, which was debuted in 1941 but is widely regarded as too basic by many experts to be considered a real forerunner to modern fantasy games.) Strat-o-matic, a game similar to APBA, initially introduced in the 1960s. After purchasing the APBA or Strat-o-matic board game, players ordered cards each year that included the statistical statistics for the previous season’s ballplayers. The outcome of the player’s “at-bat” or turn was determined by a mix of data on those cards and the rolling of dice. In the 1990s, computerized versions of those games allowed the statistics for a season from any baseball league in the globe, as well as those from previous big league seasons, to be programmed in. Rotisserie baseball inherited the cult status that APBA and Strat-o-matic had achieved.

Rotisserie baseball was created in 1980 by author Dan Okrent and a group of baseball-obsessed pals who convened at the Manhattan restaurant Le Rotisserie Francais on a regular basis. They were the foundation of the inaugural rotisserie league. Unlike APBA, which is based on previous season performance, rotisserie baseball and its subsequent Internet-based fantasy variations are played during the regular baseball season. The rotisserie baseball season begins with a player draft (often done as an auction), in which each team in the league selects 23-27 players from big league rosters (with predetermined quotas for each position). The rotisserie league winner is determined by the statistics that those players accumulate over the course of a season. Batting average, home runs, runs scored, runs batted in, wins (pitching), saves, earned run average, and walks plus hits per innings pitched are the typical statistics used in that game. Team managers can replace underperforming or injured players with new ones as the season develops.

Fantasy baseball evolved from the rotisserie game and takes advantage of the Internet’s capabilities to communicate data with a distributed group of individuals. Online fantasy baseball includes statistical management for small rotisserie leagues as well as large-scale leagues with numerous teams owning the same player.

Fantasy baseball’s success created a new industry of statistical services and magazines that examined players from a fantasy standpoint and offered team-management tactics. Furthermore, the introduction of sophisticated statistics, known as sabermetrics in baseball but widespread in other sports, in the late twentieth century resulted in better-informed fantasy players as well as a wider range of statistics to utilize in fantasy scoring.

Gridiron football fantasy

Fantasy gridiron football began in 1962, when Bill Winkenbach, then a part owner of the Oakland Raiders football team, gathered with some pals in a New York City hotel and formed the GOPPPL, the first fantasy football league (Greater Oakland Professional Pigskin Prognosticators League). The basic idea was straightforward. Members of the league would “draft” actual National Football League (NFL) and American Football League (a rival professional football organization that merged with the NFL in 1970) players to their fantasy franchises, and the members would accrue points and compete against each other based on the actual performance of those players in games.

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The typical yearly fantasy football league has 10 or 12 teams and follows a conventional pattern. Each club has a weekly roster of 12-16 players, with a starting lineup consisting of a quarterback, one or two running backs, two wide receivers, a tight end, a flex (a running back or wide receiver), a kicker, and a team defense/special teams player. Prior to the start of the NFL regular season, a draft is held. A “snake draft” is the usual draft format, in which each team in a league chooses one player in turn in round one. Round two player selection will then begin with the team who selected last in the first round and terminate with the team that selected first in the first round. This process is repeated each round until all teams have drafted enough players to fill their respective squads. Following the draft, clubs may make a variety of roster changes through trades with other teams in the league or through the waiver wire (claiming players not previously on the roster of any team in one’s league).

The actual games begin with the first week of the NFL season and are usually scored as follows for offensive players: six points for rushing and receiving touchdowns, four points for passing touchdowns, one point for every 25 yards passing, one point for every 10 yards rushing or receiving, two points for any two-point conversion, three points for a field goal, and one point for an extra point. The points scored by team defenses/special teams vary greatly between leagues.

Beginning in week 1, each fantasy team in a conventional fantasy football league is assigned a regular-season schedule consisting of one weekly head-to-head game. The team whose players score the most fantasy points over the course of the week wins. The clubs with the best records at the end of the regular season usually advance to the playoffs, which usually begin in week 14. In one of the most basic play-off designs, the top two teams receive first-round byes, while the following four teams compete for the chance to proceed to the final four in week 15. In week 16, two teams proceed to the fantasy championship, with the winner declared league champion. (Typically, fantasy leagues do not play games in Week 17, the final week of the NFL regular season, because NFL clubs that have clinched a playoff spot are more likely to rest their premier players, depriving some fantasy teams of their best assets.)

As the game evolved, many variations in scoring systems (most notably, leagues that add one point per reception made), league rules (such as auction leagues, in which participants bid on players rather than using the snake draft, and keeper leagues, in which participants can keep certain players on their roster from year to year), and season length emerged. Fantasy football leagues centered on college football and the Canadian Football League are also available.

Other types of fantasy sports

Many other fantasy sports rose in popularity around the world as the Internet spread. In addition to the more prevalent leagues featuring team sports like basketball and ice hockey, fantasy leagues focusing on individual sports like golf and auto racing arose in the late twentieth century. Although fantasy sports originated in the United States, they quickly spread to other countries, most notably Canada and the United Kingdom, with fantasy hockey dominating in the former and fantasy football (soccer) dominating in the latter (primarily leagues involving players from England’s Premier League). Tennis, cricket, and Australian rules football are some more popular fantasy sports around the world.

Fantasy sports have grown into a multibillion-dollar industry, with yearly revenues exceeding $1 billion by the early 2010s. Almost all major sports media channels, such as ESPN, Yahoo Sports, and Fox Sports, as well as countless specialist Web sites, feature various fantasy games, including both free and paid leagues (and usually promise subsequent payouts if the participant wins). Fantasy sports are also popular platforms for league gambling, as many leagues require dues from each member, with the pot being dispersed at the conclusion of the season to the league champion or among the top finishers.

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