DraftStreet Diary: Another Exclusive $300 Freeroll on Friday

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Tonight’s the night, if you like money for nothing. The latest Sheridan Hoops Freeroll closes at 7:00 EST. It’s a 1-day fantasy contest, free to enter, with no strings attached. The best team wins $100 cash!

Finishing second ($60) or third ($30) or even 15th ($5) also pays off. Consider it a reward for our loyal readers, and an opportunity to see how much fun daily leagues are — if you haven’t discovered that already.

They can be lucrative, too. The $100 bankroll I begin with each Monday was down $31 after three nights. On Thursday, I cautiously spent just $11 on four teams comprised entirely of Knicks and Nuggets. Three of those entries won $10 each, and the other — finishing second of 550 entries in the $2 GPP (Guaranteed Prize Pool) — was worth $125. Now entering the weekend with a profit of $111, I’ll be raising the stakes a little.

In addition to the Freeroll, there’s a Qualifier for the 2013 DraftStreet Fantasy Basketball Championship, where the grand champion wins $50,000. Tonight, 600 teams will vie for a seat in the DSBBC Main Event. It costs $11 to enter, with $1,500 in consolation prizes, including $350 for second place and $120 for third. On the theory that you can’t win the fifty grand if you don’t try, I’m in.

Like any great game, the rules are simple but winning is a challenge. Players are eligible at one of three positions: G, F and C. Pick two of each (plus two Utility players) within a $100,000 salary cap. The scoring system has eight categories: PTS = 1 pt; REB = 1.25 pts; AST = 1.5 pts; STL = 2 pts; BLK = 2 pts; you are penalized for TO (-1 pt) and -0.5 pts for each missed FT or FG.

Freeroll 15 Jan. 4
Stars Over $13,000
LeBron James $23,266
Kevin Durant $22,393
Kobe Bryant $19,957
James Harden $18,930
Josh Smith $15,870
Scrubs Under $9,000
Terrence Ross $6,790
Bradley Beal $8,699
C.J. Miles $8,114
Jamaal Tinsley $7,621
D.J. Augustin $7,575
Starters $9,000 to $13,000
Luis Scola $11,298
DeMar DeRozan $12,042
Deron Williams $12,946
Joe Johnson $10,257
Goran Dragic $11,224

Today’s chart, offering five suggestions in each of three price ranges, is for the Freeroll only. Other Friday leagues, like the DSBBC Qualifier, have a slightly different salary structure; the computers make daily adjustments and the Freeroll prices were set earlier in the week. For example, Raptors rookie Terrence Ross costs $8,975 in most leagues after the best game of his career on Wednesday. He’s an even better bargain at just $6,790 in the Freeroll.

There are literally millions of possible combinations. Enter early, then you can make unlimited lineup changes until the 7:00 pm deadline. Breaking news, late scratches and sudden inspirations often cause me to shuffle the roster, but for now, here’s my team:

F1 Josh Smith (ATL-F) $15,870
F2 Luis Scola (PHO-F) $11,298
G1 James Harden (HOU-G) $18,930
G2 DeMar DeRozan (TOR-G) $12,042
C1 DeMarcus Cousins (SAC-C) $15,449
C2 Tyler Zeller (CLE-C) $9,108
U1 Joe Johnson (BKN-G) $10,257
U2 Terrence Ross (TOR-G) $6,790

Whether you’re a fantasy hoops beginner or a so-called expert, the Salary Cap game is easy to learn. It’s a bit like an eight-piece jigsaw puzzle, with the LeBron James piece ($23,266) bigger than all the others. If you key on LBJ and/or Kevin Durant ($22,393) you’ll need to find smaller pieces that fit.

Take your best shot at the $100 first prize in tonight’s Freeroll. What have you got to lose? Don’t keep it a secret; challenge your friends for bragging rights.

My Fantasy Spin, published by 9:00 every morning, previews all the upcoming games and looks back on the previous night’s results, with the latest in who’s hot, who’s not and who might be next.

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