Congratulations… Me!

I won the second installment of the 2013 Lottery with the winning number of 59 and Don’t Shit the Money Bed! will pick second in this season’s draft. I had the third highest chance of winning (15%), so sorry to Greg and Emilio. And congratulations to me.

The third pick will be decided at the close of the Dow today, so check the Journal’s homepage at about about 1:30 pacific to see who will pick third! Good luck to everyone left!

And, if one of Winerman’s, or my, numbers comes again (97–99, 45–59), the winning number will simply be the second- and third-to-last digits of the DJIA (i.e., the two digits on either side of the decimal), and so on as necessary.

Picks 4 – 12 will be determined by reverse order of last year’s standings in accordance with League rules.

Congratulations Winerman!

Justin has won the Lottery with the winning number 97 and Suckmy Winermans will have the number one overall pick in the 2013 Bad News Barristers Draft. Congratulations! With the lowest odds of winning (just 3%), Justin has pulled off the unthinkable. Although it must suck to be Greg right now, this is truly what the Lottery is all about.

The second pick will be decided at the close of the Dow today, so check the Journal’s homepage at about about 1:30 pacific to see who will pick second! Good luck to everyone left!

Although it’s unlikely, if one of Winerman’s numbers comes again (97 – 99), the winning number will simply be the second- and third-to-last digits of the DJIA (i.e., the two digits on either side of the decimal), and so on as necessary.

The third pick will be decided tomorrow. After that, picks four through 12 will be determined by reverse order of last year’s standings in accordance with League rules.

Lottery Today!

The 2013 Bad News Barristers Lottery is today!

Although it won’t be official until the print edition of the Wall Street Journal hits newsstands tomorrow morning, check the Journal’s homepage after the market closes this afternoon to find out which lucky owner will have the number one of all pick in this season’s draft!

Remember, it’s the last two digits of the Dow Jones, so if–hypothetically–the Lottery had been on Friday, the winning number would have been 83 and Weiss would have the first pick. So close, Dave!

The number two pick will be decided by the Dow’s closing number tomorrow.

Here are your number assignments:

Greg 00 – 24
Emilio 25 – 44
Brandon 45 – 59
Ben 60 – 72
Dave 73 – 84
Lane 85 – 92
Erik 93 – 96
Justin 97 – 99


Rule Proposal Deadline – Wednesday

Just a gentle reminder that the deadline to submit new rule proposals or propose rule changes is this Wednesday, July 31, 2013.

Thanks to those who have already submitted suggestions. If you still want to propose one, please do so this week, so I can have the ballot out early next week.

After the ballot is distributed, there will be a one-week voting period to cast votes on the proposals.

Lottery Postponed – Sorry!


I am really sorry to say that I am not able to hold the Lottery today. [insert typical lawyer excuse here] Basically, I haven’t had time to paint my balls…

My ping-pong balls that is. And I’m traveling next week, so the earliest I could do the video draft is the week of August 5th. That sounds like a painfully long time to me, so we are going to revert back to the tried-n-true stock market lottery…

And so, the Lottery winner will be determined by the final two digits of the Dow Jones Industrial Average at the market close on Monday, July 30th. The official number will be those reported on the front page of Wall Street Journal on Tuesday, July 31th. Here are your number assignments…

Greg 00 – 24
Emilio 25 – 44
Brandon 45 – 59
Ben 60 – 72
Dave 73 – 84
Lane 85 – 92
Erik 93 – 96
Justin 97 – 99

Good luck to everyone in the Lottery and again, I am really sorry I didn’t get my shit together in time to have the video lottery this weekend as planned.

More Money, More… Fun!

When the Bad News Barristers began in fall of 2007, gas was $1.25 per gallon, a gallon of milk cost a quarter, and you could get a z-job on any corner for a nickle and a song… A $50 entry fee made sense in that time and place. But in 2013, even a dime-bag costs twenty bucks. You can see where this is going…

I propose that we raise the entry fee. But rather than just give the champion more sweaty cash, here are some ways more money might mean more… Fun!

The most obvious way to spread the good times around is to keep final payouts the same and to add mid-season payouts. We could, for instance, offer $50 to the highest scoring team every week. Or, we could give $100 to the last undefeated team, or the mid-way points

Another fun twist would be to offer $100 for the best draft(er), or best general manager–which could be determined through league-wide votes. I suppose it’s possible that people would just vote for themselves, but with 12 votes, I still expect the cream to rise to the top.

Although I’m not set on any amount or specific use for the money, I do think if we could offer some early-to-mid-season payouts for certain achievements, it would increase excitement for everyone. And we can do all of that by increasing the entry fee by just $50 per team. There are probably a number of other good ideas for what we could do with a little extra cash–which I welcome by email or in the comments…

Trade-Deadline Party in Vegas?

Regarding League Finances

As many of you have noticed, the League has transitioned from using to collect fees and distribute winnings to using In case you’ve wondered, here’s why…

LeagueSafe was an excellent option back in 2007 when sending money to-and-fro online was a tricky business, but it lacks the flexibility that services like WePay offer (and that our League demands). The League needs to be able to accept payments in any amount, at any time of financesyear, and without penalty. LeagueSafe could not deliver that. To say nothing of the fact that there is no good reason to allow a third-party service to retain the time value of League funds (however paltry that sum may be). LeagueSafe is for beginners, the Bad News Barristers are seasoned veterans.

WePay is way more flexible, but since it ties to a personal bank account (rather than in escrow with LeagueSafe), it requires that funds be tracked to prevent administrative mistakes. And while I would never embezzle from the League, it is not impossible to imagine a dispute over whether an owner had paid their dues as the result of a bookkeeping error. To solve that problem, I created a separate bank account with Citi (ending in x1099) solely for Bad News Barristers league business. So whenever you receive a WePay invoice from the League, you can be assured that your money will be deposited directly into the League account where it will remain safely until it is to be properly distributed.

Does this stop me from absconding with all of the League’s dough? No, I suppose it doesn’t. It does, however, mean that all monies going in-and-out of that account are League monies, which makes it very easy to monitor–including producing an accounting of all League financial transactions to any owner who might request it.

The Bad News Barristers have an excellent record of paying all League fees on time. Thank you very much for your continued diligence in making those timely payments. And of course, do not hesitate to ask any questions regarding League finances.

Proposing the K-System

What’s wrong with the current keeper system? For starters, it doesn’t promote trading the same way our draft pick trading does. But worse then that, it allows players to be locked up in perpetuity (yes, like Aaron Rodgers). And it’s confusing–I can’t tell you how many times I have been asked if someone can trade a player in the off-season that they don’t intend to keep (for those who still don’t know the answer–no, you can’t). Despite these flaws, every year someone suggests adding keepers! Well, I’ve got a proposal that will change all of that: the K-System.contract Here’s how it works…

Every player drafted is automatically signed to a 1-year contract. This is nothing more than a change in terminology, it simply means that you have the rights to that player for the season in which you drafted him (unless you trade him before the deadline, or cut him).

But here’s the twist–each season every owner will have a single 1-year extension and a single 2-year extension to give to two players that remain on a team’s roster when the season ends. For instance, this off-season I would sign Aaron Rodgers to the 2-year extension and Jonathan Stewart to the 1-year extension (yes, my team is that bad–I just checked, and no joke, I have Titus Young on my roster).

Fast forward to this time next year: the Stewart contract will be up (thank God) and Stewart will re-enter the draft, for one of you lucky SOBs to nab. A player can’t be extended by the same owner twice (and I wouldn’t want to with Stewart), but that is how the K-System prevents controlling a player indefinitely. So I can’t sign Rodgers to the 2-year extension and then try to extend him again (with my 1 or 2-year extension) when that runs out. Still with me?

In the summer of 2014, Rodgers will be entering the final season of his 2-year extension and so I will have him “under contract” until the trade deadline in 2014–at which point he would become a free agent at the end of the season and re-enter the draft. Here is where the system really promotes trading–if I trade Rodgers at the beginning of 2014, the owner who acquires him can extend him for 2 more years, which means Rodgers’ new owner will have him for the 2014, ’15 and ’16 seasons (although that owner will face the same dilemma in the summer of 2016).

That makes Rodgers a lot more valuable at the beginning of 2014 then the end of it, because it means 13 more weeks of production from Rodgers. The same would have been true of Jonathan Stewart right after we inked his extension. The possibility of a sign-and-trade makes things much more interesting.

Now don’t forget that I also have two more extensions to hand out in 2014. Since I can’t extend Rodgers (who’s still under contract) or Stewart (who’s 1-year extension is up), I will give the 1-year extension to Jordy Nelson and the 2-year extension to Trent Richardson, both of whom I (hypothetically) drafted in 2013.

So, what does that mean for the 2015 season? Well, if I don’t trade Rodgers (or anyone else), I will have the rights to Rodgers, Richardson, and Nelson for the 2015 season. Without trading, I won’t have more than 3 active contracts at once, because the Rodgers and Nelson deals would expire after 2015 and I will only have two new extensions to hand out in 2014, plus the last year of the Richardson deal.

I say “without trading,” because there is nothing stopping an owner from acquiring multiple players with one or two years left on their deals and carrying over several players without drafting. But, I imagine that it would be difficult to do that because you only have so much to trade away–I think its a very exciting wrinkle, though.

How would draft pick compensation work then? Well, you don’t get any compensation for cutting (ie, dropping) a player to whom you have given an extension. Or if you acquired a player under contract from another team and cut him, again you get nothing. But if you choose not to use one your two annual extensions, then you will receive a compensatory draft pick in accordance with rules we already have for not using your keepers. This helps ensure parity because we don’t want teams to end up in an infini-loop of shitty players and shitty draft picks.

I think this would be a real improvement to our current system, but not really a significant departure from our current model. I would like to put the K-System on the ballot this off-season to be implemented immediately. I know that we traditionally wait one year before implementing a new rule, but if we do that, then I would have Rodger for 4 more years (thru 2016) because I wouldn’t have to burn my 2-year extension until 2014, which is too long, in my opinion. In this special case, I think it makes sense to institute the K-System right away, if the league votes it in.

I welcome any questions or thoughts in the comments or by email.

Call for New Rule Proposals

As in previous year, the floor is now open for all owners to propose new rules (or rule changes) that would take effect beginning with the 2014 season. Note: There are three rule changes going into effect this season.

Since an open email chain gets confusing very quickly, however, please email me directly with your actual suggestion, so I can synthesize overlapping suggestions and submit all the proposals to the League for a one-time vote.

That doesn’t mean you can’t discuss ideas or suggestions with the rest of the League. You can always email the league–using the League contact page or at–or post on the Rules forum page. But if that seems like too much work, you can just email me and I will put the idea up for a straight up-or-down vote.

Please submit all suggestions no later than July 31. Please visit the Rules page for a refresher on current league practices.