Dry your eye fantasy guy(s) (and gals!), you don't have to wait until next November to play more fantasy basketball!
Thanks to FantasySportsMadness.com you can continue playing the game you love while our most loved (and hated) teams battle for the NBA's ultimate prize.
In case you haven't, check out Bleacher Creature Len Laber's FantasySportsMadness.com, you can play playoff fantasy basketball in two ways, One and Done and/or Survival.
In One and Done, you select your own lineup of players each round of the playoffs and can only use a player once, while in Survival, you either choose or draft with league members a full roster before the playoffs begin.
Here's my tips for both styles of play:
One and Done
You have to be very strategic in picking your team each round because there are two major factors that come into play.
1) What teams will be playing next round?
2) How many games will be played in each series?
To help with the first question you are going to be better off selecting players from teams that will not be playing next round, or traditionally the 5-8 seeds. The top five players I like from the 5-8 seeds are Dwyane Wade, Dirk Nowitzki, Chris Paul, Tim Duncan, and Tony Parker.
Will there be an upset in this year's playoffs? Right now the best upsets look to be Miami over Atlanta, Dallas over Denver, San Antonio over Portland, and Philadelphia over Boston.
That means that using a star player from a team like Dallas, who's poised to upset the Nuggets, might leave you shorthanded in the next couple of rounds.
Looking at the second question, it might still be a strong move to gamble on the players from these potential upset teams because they should go longer than the 1 vs 8's that can end up in a sweep.
I would stay away from almost all of the Detroit, Chicago, and Utah players because I don't have much faith in their playoff hopes.
You know how most players produce for their teams by now, so instead of spending your time researching which players to pick focus on the matchups.
My sleeper pick for the first round of the One and Done league is J.R. Smith. I think Denver has a good chance of playing a full series and I question if Josh Howard will be healthy enough to stick Smith.
The strategy for the Survival league is a little more straightforward. Pick the best players who will produce for you the longest.
It is tempting to pick Dwyane Wade and Chris Paul in this league because of their ability but it looks like they won't make it out of the first round.
Stick with stars that have staying power like LeBron James, Kobe Bryant, Dwight Howard, Pau Gasol, Rashard Lewis, and Mo Williams
REMEMBER: Signups close Apr. 18, so sign up at FantasySportsMadness.com today and tell 'em John Lorge sent you!