The Closest Title Race Yet?

What an eventful season it’s been so far. We’ve had Hamlin’s inability to speak at the auction. We’ve had the whole league bidding 100mill on Pogba. We’ve had some very Josh-like benchings from several managers (mostly Josh). We’ve had the best Deadline Day ever. We’ve had the worst rebrand in history (you know who you are), and the worst ever start to a league season (cheers Bond). We’ve had Smalling-gate. We’ve added WordPress and we’ve added the Fantrax Pools. We’ve had last minute wins, and last minute Survival eliminations (Allen assist –> Sigurdsson assist –> Allen assist).

And as if all of that wasn’t enough, we’ve got an unbelievable title race on our hands. Just 1 game separates the top eight. EIGHT. These are extraordinary times that we live in. So the question we are looking to answer this week is: Is this the closest title race ever? I’ve got a record of every Fantrax result ever, so we can check. Lets go to the numbers.

The league leader has already changed eight times this season, with four different leaders. Here are the deets:

LEADER WEEKS
Team fisher8080 1 to 2
Ozone Athletic 3 to 4
Boz’s Pandas 5
Ozone Athletic 6
Boz’s Pandas 7 to 8
The Groovy Penguins 9
Boz’s Pandas 10
The Groovy Penguins 11

So how does this compare to previous seasons. Well, in both Season 1 and 2, the lead changed only six times the entire season. We’ve topped that already. So you could argue that the first 11 weeks of this season are already more competitive than the whole 38 weeks from the last two years. Here are the other seasons:

LEADER WEEKS
FC Borrill 1
FC Salvidge-a-point 2 to 9
Ozone Athletic 10 to 19
FC Salvidge-a-point 20 to 25
Ozone Athletic 26
FC Salvidge-a-point 27 to 38
LEADER WEEKS
Boz’s Pandas 1 to 3
Peperami Barmy Army 4 to 7
Ozone Athletic 8 to 10
Peperami Barmy Army 11 to 27
Hammerhead Sharks 28 to 34
Peperami Barmy Army 35 to 38

Now in terms of the league table itself. We’ve established that there is just one win between first and eighth. The league leader (Mills) is on 21 points, with the eighth placed Hammerheads on 18 points.

1 The Groovy Penguins 21 406
2 Elm Grove Elite 21 376
3 Peperami Barmy Army 21 364
4 Boz’s Pandas 21 355
5 Chris Talling’s XI 18 396
6 Ozone Athletic 18 394
7 Team fisher8080 18 353
8 The Hammerheads 18 340
9 Real Sosobad 16 371
10 Leweys Legends 15 321
11 Clem’s Lems 15 320
12 Gooch United 13 327
13 Salamanders 9 305
14 Bobbond Allstars 6 318

In both of the previous seasons, after Week 11 there was a 9 point gap between 1st and 8th. The top 2 (Season 1) and top 3 (Season 2) had an extra win at this point, while 5th-8th (Season 1) and 7th-8th (Season 2) had an extra loss. So we can conclude that the best teams have got worse, and the mid-table teams have got better, all of which contributes to a wide open title race.

Another point to note is how fewer fantasy points have been scored by the league’s best teams compared to last season’s champions PBA. Peperami (446) had 40 more points than the Penguins have got currently (406). We can’t really compare Season 1 because only pure assists counted that year, so less points were on offer. But we can compare the league leader’s score as a percentage of the total points scored in the league. Ozone had 9.6% in S1, with Peperami in at 9.1% in S2. The Penguins have currently scored 8.2% of all fantasy points. A 1% drop doesn’t seem like much at first glance. But if the entire league had all scored exactly the same points, the joint leader would be on 7.1%. So, if you’re still following at this point (and I wouldn’t blame you if you weren’t), the difference between the league leader and perfect equality has halved compared to last season. All of which supports our idea of a competitive title race.

Here are the historic Week 11 Tables from the archives. Incidentally, Mills has gone from worst team to best team in two years:

1 Ozone Athletic 24 386
2 FC Salvidge-a-point 24 352
3 Elm Grove Elite 22 355
4 Peperami Barmy Army 18 331
5 Hammerhead Sharks 15 372
6 FC Borrill 15 352
7 Gooch City 15 337
8 Team fisher8080 15 307
9 Bayer Neverlosen 15 291
10 Clem’s Rems 12 325
11 Gooch United 12 294
12 Team Dick_mills 10 307
1 Peperami Barmy Army 24 446
2 Ozone Athletic 24 416
3 Bobbond Allstars 24 384
4 Miceglas 19 336
5 Hammerhead Sharks 18 386
6 FC Salvidge-a-point 18 323
7 Boz’s Pandas 15 388
8 Team fisher8080 15 348
9 Elm Grove Elite 13 378
10 Gooch United 13 364
11 Clem’s Rems 13 278
12 The Groovy Penguins 12 295
13 FC BayerNeverlosen 12 282
14 Leweys Legends 9 282

Who do you think will win the title this year? Your guess is as good as mine.

Cheers,

Your friendly Commish.

P.S. I’ve arbitrarily chosen the above logo for Team Fisher8080 because finding him on Fantrax is more unlikely than Finding Nemo.

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