I was beaten in my fantasy league, beaten 140-120 or something like that by my Dublin Hurricanes team-mate Eric 'Vegas' Valkys (what chance did I have, his nickname is Vegas!). My team, 'The Tusken Raiders' now stand at a perfectly reasonable 2-1, however there is a dark pall over them as we speak.
Why so? Brian Westbrook's ankle.
Westbrook was my first pick in our draft, and I was pretty chuffed to get him considering he is one of fantasy footballs leading lights. He almost single handed carried me to my first two victories. Sunday evening I was innocently watching the football when an alarming report came in from the crunch Pittsburgh/Philadelphia game. Word was Westbrook was out hurt.
Now, I don't really care who wins between those two, both entertaining squads, however the news on my fantasy stud was galling.
I sought clarification online. All I could find was;
''The Associated Press reports Philadelphia Eagles RB Brian Westbrook (ankle) suffered an ankle injury during the team's Week 3 game. He has not returned to action.''That night I was faced with several grim questions. Was Westbrook done for the season? Would he be back at all? How on earth would the Tusken Raiders recover?
The next day I logged on to check the latest, and found a promising report;
''Westbrook is day-to-day with a strained ankle, an encouraging sign for a Philadelphia Eagles team that can't afford to lose its top offensive player. An MRI on Monday revealed no damaged ligaments, coach Andy Reid said.''
Thankfully it doesn't look too bad for Westbrook, and the Tusken Raiders should stay competitive. It was while all this was going on that I spared a thought for those who drafted Tom Brady, most likely with their top pick in their own drafts. The knock on effect is that they would be turning to second round players to act as their money makers. Tom Brady owners probably will not be winning any fantasy leagues in 2008.
So at the end of the day what does it all mean? Is Fantasy sports taking over? No, of course not, it's just another added element to an already wildly enjoyable league, the NFL. Is it interesting to hear about someone else's fantasy woes? Only as much as it is interesting to listening to someone describe a bad beat in a poker game. Unless of course it's a really, really bad beat, like aces over kings being beaten by a straight flush, otherwise known as Tom Brady tearing his ACL less than half way into the first game of the season.
Now that's a bad beat.