Reid, Mike, Andrew and first time guest Derek get together to review the many high points from Round 16. Water-logged conditions, red cards, dumb luck and get excited about the fantasy potential that several teams have for the next round. Round 17 is a double-game week, so they break it down by each team to help you identify who you want to target before teams lock on Wednesday.
Hopefully everyone enjoyed the breather MLS Fantasy managers had over the past couple of rounds, because we have double game weeks galore on the docket in Week 17. The player who put the slow period to best use was Martin Blais, manager of CANTONA KUNG FU FC, who led the way with 129 points last week. Congrats!
With four MLS matches on the slate on Wednesday followed by a full pack of matches over the weekend, Round 17 has plenty of fantasy potential. Not every game has surefire fantasy targets, but there are plenty of solid options around the league – I’ve compiled my top picks below.
Also, don’t forget that the manager with the highest overall score at the end of this round will be crowned Midseason Champion and will win a 2017 MLS All-Star prize package!
Limited Time: For much of the season, many fantasy managers have been tempted by Alec Kann (ATL $4.4) thanks to his low price and experienced backline. Unfortunately, he’s only returned two clean sheets all year. This round could be different as Atlanta faces two of the worst offenses in the league at D.C. on Wednesday (7:30 pm ET | MLS LIVE) and back home against Colorado on Saturday (7 pm ET | MLS LIVE).
Budget Option: If Kann feels a little too risky for you, then consider Clement Diop (LA $4.0). Even with a trip to streaking Colorado on Wednesday (9 pm ET | MLS LIVE), I think the LA Galaxy have one of the easiest DGWs of the week. It did look like Diop was still working out some post injury rust last week, but with key defenders back in action for Round 17, I think he has a chance at a clean sheet at the Rapids and back home against SKC, who have struggled to score on the road this year.
Matching Set: While Atlanta’s ‘keeper may soon change with Brad Guzan’s impending arrival, their first-choice defense remains consistent. If you want to double up on the Five Stripes this round, then the best option is still Leandro Gonzalez Pirez ($6.1). He is one of the more expensive defenders in the league, but the center back usually gets a couple of bonus points per game, has some offensive potential and has a shot for a clean sheet in both games this week.
Value Pick: If you are looking for a DGW defender with a good record for clean sheets then consider Joevin Jones (SEA $5.2). Seattle have hit a rough spot offensively, but at home, they have kept a clean sheet in three of their last four games. That’s a great record going into a DGW and Jones is the cheapest reliable way into the Seattle defense.
Budget Mid: There are a lot of great big name, expensive, midfielders to pick from this week, but if you’re looking for someone on the cheap, consistent side, then Micheal Azira ($6.6) should be on your list. Colorado haven’t been a great source of fantasy points this season, but as a defensive midfielder, Azira is not reliant on goals for his production and he averages about 5 points per game. With two challenging games against LA on Wednesday and at Atlanta on Saturday (7 pm ET; MLS LIVE), Azira’s score could reach double digits this week.
Differential: The goals just keep coming for Josef Martinez (ATL $9.4) – now, will he finally start playing major minutes? We don’t know that answer yet, but we will be able to see Atlanta’s starting XI before fantasy teams lock. After his great performance against Columbus last week, I think Martinez will see time in both of Atlanta’s matches this round. As long he starts against D.C. on Wednesday, he’s worth the risk.
SGW Option: If you’re looking for a single game week player then I think there’s only one option, Nemanja Nikolic (CHI $10.5). MLS’ leading scorer has 13 goals this season, including three in his last four games. Nikolic’s success has made Chicago a Supporters’ Shield contender, and he should have plenty of chances against an Orlando team that’s been leaky in defense and will be coming off a quick turnaround – and lots of air miles – on Saturday at Toyota Park (8:30 pm ET | MLS LIVE).
WHICH PLAYERS are you considering for Round 17?
FOR MORE fantasy advice, be sure to check out the articles and charts posted at MLSFantasyBoss.com.
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