Secrets of the game revealed...
I don’t know about you guys and gals, but I don’t fux wit the WSL Fantasy League. Maybe I’m just old fashioned, but fantasysurfer.com has always been my bread and butter. I actually placed 33rd in the world at the end of the 2015 season. (Still bitter about that misplaced prize pack too, Negs. I yearned for those woolen socks you had so carefully knitted.)
Anywho, this fantasy discussion will take place in the realm of fantasysurfer If you don’t have an account, make one. I actually think there’s still a BeachGrit club. Maybe let’s reinstate that bad boy, Negs?
1. John Florence: 12.5 mil
WA’s raw power and offshore-turning sideshore winds suit John to a T. Whether it’s Box, Main Break or North Point, it’s safe to say JJF’s the favorite in the field. John also loves being in WA. It’s one of his favorite places in the world thanks to the surplus of surf and relative dearth of humanity. My only concern is that he’ll lose focus on the event thanks to all the nearby distractions. Kid-in-a-candy-store syndrome.
2. Julian Wilson: 8 mil
You didn’t listen, did you? You fell for the hypebomb that was Wayward and threw Julian on your Snapper team. But I warned you. Jules doesn’t do well at Snapper because his wide-stanced, rounded-out surfing doesn’t fit the wave’s steep transitions. But if Julian and Snapper are oil and water, Julian and WA are peanut butter and bananas. Much like John, Julian’s surfing is built for WA’s open-faced, delightfully wooly surf. Box, Main Break or North Point, Jules will succeed.
3. Michel Bourez: 8.5 mil
Strong wave need strong man. Big wave come. Michel break wave in half. Grrrrrrrrrrrr. Also he’s a past winner here, which shouldn’t really matter, but it kind of does.
4. Mick Fanning: 5.25 mil
For that price, I’d take Mick in a skimboard comp. With how fantasysurfer is structured, you’re able to keep guys at their starting price for the whole year if you hold onto them. It’s kinda like stocks, except you can’t sell them for a profit once their worth increases. Either way, I’ll have Mick on my team for all eleven events this year. Probably the best 5 mil I ever spent.
5. Wiggolly Dantas: 4 mil
I basically have Wigs on my team thinking that the comp will move to Main Break. Of course I don’t want to watch Main Break, but it’s a probable outcome. Wigs loves bigger surf and his backhand lipper is so damn powerful, I could see him breaking into the quarters or semis with ease. Plus he fulfills my fantasysurfer diversity and equity requirement.
6. Frederico Morais: 3.75 mil
Remember that massive turn he did at Snapper? The one that had him beat contest-favorite Filipe Toledo? Now imagine that on a six-footer at Main Break. I’m a firm believer that big men excel in big surf, so I’m giving Freddy the green light in this one.
7. Ezekiel Lau: 3 mil
The big-man theory also applies to Bruddah Zeke. But aside from his obvious physical advantages, Zeke proved his worth against Filipe and Jordy at Snapper, which is not somewhere I’d have expected him to succeed, so I have full confidence in his ability to produce a result in WA. Let’s hope his surfing loosens up and he shows the top dawgs what he’s all about.
8. Jeremy Flores: 3.25 mil
Did you love Jer’s performance at Snapper? I did. Round one was a masterclass in railwork, while round two showcased his skills in and around the tube. Jeremy could be the most valuable pick in this entire event. If he gets the confidence rolling, he could easily win the whole damn thing.
Post script: With some basic arithmetic, you may realize that I didn’t utilize my entire salary limit of 50 mil. This is unusual for me, but I also think competitive surfing has been completely random over the past couple years, so I say fuck it! Throw caution to the wind and see what sticks. Wait, was that a mixed meta — nah fuck it!