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SBI MLS Fantasy Corner


Here’s a message for the select few fantasy MLS owners who had Edson Buddle in their lineups last week. Why are you wasting your time with fantasy soccer and why aren’y spending that time playing the lottery?

Buddle’s hat-trick was like fantasy gold for the fortunate few to take the chance on the streaky striker. Fantasy coal status belonged to the FC Dallas defenders who played badly enough to help get their coach fired just a tad bit more quickly than he might have been otherwise.

SBI MLS Fantasy guru Stephen Zaffuto has his weekly take on the MLS fantasy scene and he has some good tidbits and advice to share as you get ready to set your fantasy lineups:


Alright, if you had Edson Buddle in your starting lineup last week, raise your hand. Anyone? No? Is that a hand? Oh, just stretching, right. Not even you, Ms. Buddle?

So maybe Edson Buddle wasn’t a popular pick last week. If you were one of the lucky few to have him and his hat trick on your team, however, you’re looking like a genius right now. You’re also probably ahead of me in the standings.

So where did this come from? With the advantage of hindsight, it seems that Buddle was just the type of high risk, high reward play that separates the men from the boys in fantasy sports. A starting forward with a history of having breakout games, on the team with the most goals in the league, playing against a struggling FC Dallas side – though I wouldn’t have necessarily projected a hat trick, the upside in Buddle was undeniable.

In the future, I plan on highlighting a few guys every week that I think can come in “Under the Radar” (to use the most apt cliché for the situation) to have a big week. This will be good for you because you might get a good tip on a player you would have never thought to use yourself. It’s also good for me, because it comes with a ready-made excuse if my picks fail epically – I have to take high-risk guys! Of course they might fail!

Here’s a quick rundown of important notes for the week:

  • Houston’s GK and D have the benefit of a matchup against San Jose this week.

  • Toronto FC and DC United play each other twice, once at each sides home field. (Editor’s Note: Because the first TFC-DCU game was played Wednesday night, both teams rosters have been locked for the week.  Our apologies.)

  • Colorado (3-1-0, 8 GF, 2 GA at home) hosts Chivas USA (0-2-2, 6 GF, 10 GA away).

  • Juan Carlos Osorio is serving a suspension for a red card in last week’s game.

  • FC Dallas and Houston play two games each next week, so heed last week’s lesson and start stocking up now.

Money In the Bank


Omar Cummings ($295K) – The obvious pick would have been a forward from TFC or DCU, but neither team has an advisable pick at the position. Cummings, on the other hand, has emerged as a very good finisher for the Rapids newly-potent attack. With goals in the team’s last two games, Cummings will look to continue his streak by exploiting a Chivas USA defense decimated by injury and ineffectiveness.

Honorable Mention: K. Cooper, A. Moreno, D. Dichio


Dwayne DeRosario ($398K) – D-Ro and the Dynamo are heating up at the same time. I highly doubt that’s a coincidence. Look for the corn-rowed Canadian to have at least one chance to do his quirky goal celebration dance against San Jose’s floundering defense. The best part is that it’ll be on Thursday Primetime, so you can watch it in HD!

Juan Carlos Toja ($376K) – In addition to a favorable matchup at home against RSL, I fully expect FC Dallas to come out firing, as the players try to impress their interim coach and/or whoever the permanent successor to Steve Morrow may be. Is this the week the “Bogota Waterfall”, or whatever they call his hair, returns to prominence?

Honorable Mention: M. Gallardo, A. Guevara, C. Gomez


Gonzalo Segares ($231K) – The Costa Rican defender has been great so far this year for the Fire’s league-best defensive unit. There’s no telling exactly what the Fire-Red Bulls game will look like, but if there were some situation in which a gun barrel was nuzzled gently into my temple and my life depended on providing a one word answer, I’d have to say it might be “physical”.

Honorable Mention: M. Harrington, C. Marshall, W. Barrett, H. Freeman, M. Burch


Pat Onstad ($460K) – This one’s somewhat of a gimme. Onstad is coming into form with only three goals against in his past four games and plays against a San Jose offense that is on pace to be the most futile attack in the history of the league. He may not even have to break a sweat and tarnish his Just For Men – Touch of Gray-style sideburns.

Honorable Mention: J. Busch, B. Coundoul

Head Coach:

Fernando Clavijo ($237K) – Though he may be one of the most maligned coaches in MLS for some of his indefensible moves (who needs Beckerman anyway?), you can’t argue with the fact that he has the Rapids playing some good soccer this year, especially at their home fortress high above the Rocky Mountains.  Facing a Chivas USA team which seems to always have two or three of its best players out every week – for injury, suspension, or both – Clavijo looks like a pretty solid bet to get you some sweet pointage.

Honorable Mention: Ruud Gullit (outcoached Morrow so badly last week that he lost his job), John Carver (Ed. Note: Carver was the original pick, but is no longer eligible)

Under the Radar

MF – Stuart Holden, HOU ($175K) – Remember back in March? Holden was an up-and-coming star, a young swashbuckler with a bright future, starting on a team destined for dominance in the Western Conference. Well, the Dynamo has struggled early and Holden has missed most of the season due to injury. Both of these obstacles seem to be in the midst of a reversal, and now is probably the right time to go out and grab Holden. For your fantasy team. Otherwise you’ll probably be arrested and your neighbors will be sent notification of your transgressions (he’s young, get it!?).

Interestingly enough, none of the people I’ve highlighted in this article were born in the U.S. What does that say about the current state of MLS, at least insofar as it affects your fantasy team? Discuss.  Just kidding, stay quiet.

SBI Fantasy Top Ten:

  1. RB Trophyless – 983

  2. JCO is a weasel – 959

  3. Tang Naranja – 956

  4. Bruce Arena Starship – 947

  5. fhgwhgads – 941

  6. Vourvourou FC – 932

  7. St. Armand United – 927

  8. Neumannation Sensation – 919

  9. North Shore United – 899

  10. SC Wlake – 881


  1. Segares has done nothing for me thus far but get yellow cards. Plus CHI is idle next week. I just dumped him. NM

  2. Toja? how can you recomend Toja? Even if he plays two games he doesn’t crack the top 50 field players. The new coach instead of motivating him, could just bench his behind.

  3. some guru he is I already figured out my team for the whole year and I am in the SBI league. I went from 400 to almost the top 100 in a month.

  4. He looked like the Buddle of old last week.

    Could this have been the game to get him out of his slump since he left Columbus?

    Is it a gamble, or will the real Edson Buddle begin to emerge again? That first goal looked like the old Edson Buddle. The boy still has a great touch.

    Maybe now that Kyle Martino is officially gone from pro-soccer, the curse he brought to Columbus players has finally lifted.

    Go Buddle! Show them it is not a fluke!


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