Ask The Commish: I Kicked Two People Out of My League, Now What?

By Reginald James
Reginald James

Hey commish,


I kicked two people out of my league this week  for collusion. Totally frustrating, and never thought I’d have to deal with such utter crap. Not going to get into it all, I just really need your help. The first thing I knew I had to do was find replacements, but I don’t know anyone else to bring in. We’re down to ten, so at least we’re at a good number instead of like eight. But also, what do I do with the players from these teams if I can’t find replacements? I don’t know what I’m going to do about this. It’s not fair to keep them unavailable, but how do I make it fair if I dump them onto the waiver wire? Do I hold a redraft? I don’t have a lot of time to figure this out. Do you have any suggestions?


You’re right, time isn’t on your side. What a nice gift they gave you all, four weeks into the season, huh? What a mess. Sorry you have to deal with this, but now you get to earn those commissioner wings. Let’s go!


I wish you luck in your search. It’s hard enough sometimes finding one person to fill a vacancy in the offseason, much less two after the season has already started. If it’s impossible to find two living and breathing replacements, you might have to manage the teams yourself, which would suck, I know, but you might not have a choice, right?


Of course, you’ll tell the league exactly how you’re going to do this. I recommend setting the two rosters by using the player rankings from the same source each week like ESPN, or Pick one. If it’s not one of those two, just make sure you don’t have to pay a subscription to check out their rankings like at some other fantasy sites. This way, everyone can easily see for themselves the rankings you’re using.


Roster the running back slots using the running back rankings. Roster each position in the same way. However, roster the flex spots using the overall player rankings. Don’t make any trades with the two teams. Don’t work waivers unless you have no other alternative. If you’re forced to acquire a player from waivers, choose the top-ranked player available using the same ranking source. Tell the league what you’re going to do before you make the transaction.


While this option calls you to be more active than you may like, it’s the best move for you as a commissioner, because all your choices and moves are transparent. This also allows the rest of the league to be involved right along with you through their ability to exercise some sense of oversight.


What if you get stuck with 10 members?


On one hand, this would alleviate you stressing to find new people when, as you said, you don’t know anyone. I know what that’s like personally - it’s difficult, and this isn’t the preseason. However, it’s potentially going to mean a lot more maneuvering for both you and the rest of the league. You might not be able to literally remove two teams on the platform you’re using. You might be forced to create a new league in order to continue with ten members. Are you willing to do that? Managing two ghost ships yourself looks a lot better at this point, eh?


I imagine a lot of the record keeping you’ll be doing will have to be done manually depending on the platform you’re using. Meaning, you’ll have to readjust rosters and maybe even enter adjusted scores on your own. If you have to redo the league, talk to the league and decide whether or not you’re going to retain the win-loss records, or start over completely. Keep in mind, not everyone has played the two people you booted.


Next, you’re right, I would not dump the players. I also wouldn’t hold a redraft for what, 30 - 40 players? Of course, the starters will be attractive pickups, but there are likely a number of bench players that no one would draft in any scenario. I guess it depends on what size rosters and bench depth your league has.


In any case, I don’t think you should have a draft with worthless rounds for players that no one wants. Instead, hold an auction. This way, people will only bid for the players they want. Then you’re done. The auction doesn’t have to be mandatory. Some folks might be quite happy with their current team.


You could require that anyone who is interested in the auction, needs to contact you privately with a list of the players they are interested in. Give them a deadline to give you their list to help expedite things. Then, maybe you’ll have a leaner, ready-made auction list, where only those players that people really want are considered. This might help you have a shorter auction. There will still be room for auction gamesmanship, but hopefully done with a smaller list. You may be able to come up with some other version that works for you all.


Please keep me posted on how everything goes.



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