Answers to the 10 Most FAQs about Cage Match

Rick Roos


In celebration of two years of doing Cage Match, Roos answers the 10 most frequent questions about the column………

As it turns out, I took over Cage Match from the venerable Steve Laidlaw two years ago this week, so I thought I’d mark the occasion by answering the ten most frequently asked questions (FAQs) posed to me during my time at the Cage Match helm, and also give my thoughts on what I’m trying to accomplish with the column, which is actually where I’ll start.

The Goals of Cage Match

I strive to provide the “story behind the story” when it comes to two specific players – that is, a level of statistical detail about them well beyond what’s normally at your fingertips. By the time you’ve finished the column, I want you to feel like you’ve been presented with a thorough and unbiased fantasy analysis of two players.

But as much as it’s about the two players battling in that particular week’s match-up, I’m also hoping each column will give general insight and “food for thought” knowledge that can be applied to other players already on your team or that you might be interested in owning. In short, I want this to be a column poolies can truly benefit from reading each week.

Your Ten Most FAQs about Cage Match

1) How do I choose match-ups?

The first thing I look for is guys I haven’t previously featured. The couple of times I’ve covered a player more than once, it was because I felt his situation had changed significantly. With forwards, I also aim for positional similarity, since that makes the match most relevant.

Next, I focus on scoring, going by points per game average to help me locate more hidden possibilities than if I went by straight points. Only then do I look at age; and I try not to select two players with a gap of more than five years between them, since that wouldn’t be ideal for poolies in keeper leagues. And in a perfect world, I’d also try to select two players who have similar contracts, due to the growing interest in cap leagues.

2) How long does it take me to prepare each column?

In all, probably about four (or more) hours per week between researching, writing, rewriting, and proofreading. I’ve never written an entire column in one sitting, for a couple of reasons. First is I have a day job (attorney), so I write mostly at night and on weekend in bursts of 30-60 minutes. Second is writing only small chunks at a t