The Franchise League – aka the greatest idea ever

As a professional time-waster, I can say without a doubt, that this is the most ridiculous way I’ve ever spent a couple hours. Yesterday, Sam tosses out the idea of a ‘keeper’ Draft League. Now, most of you know the point of the Draft Leagues is to reset the clock each off-season and give everyone a chance to start fresh.

But what if that wasn’t the point?

We’ve only had about 15% turnover rate in the Thursday night B Draft West for the last 3 seasons (year). Why couldn’t we take a group of 48 – 60 players that love playing at Wall Ball Area, take a handful of overly obsessed dedicated captains and let them run their own Franchise?

You’re telling me guys that play fantasy sports, obsess over the Trade Machine and all think they’re smarter than everyone else wouldn’t be dying to prove it using a defined Salary Cap and league rules for rec basketball players?

After about an hour of spit-balling ideas  with Sam yesterday afternoon, I decided to sleep on it.

I awoke this morning with a fever, and the only prescription is more Franchise League.

I’m going to layout the ground work as Sam and I have discussed. It’s fairly detailed, but I’m sure I missed a number of points that would NEED to be made rules so someone can’t easily game the system. I’m sure a couple of the things I missed are going to seem obvious to you. That’s fine, let me know so I can tweak the rules and make it the most fair, hypothetical, ‘Oh.My.God. They have to do that now!” league possible


1st Off-season
The first draft of the league would be conducted in the same manner as any other CAC draft league.
Captains are limited by their APR and order is determined by lottery, with chances determined by APR
The Draft snakes after each round.

Players are assigned initial contract value based upon the round they are drafted in. All dollar amounts in ‘millions’

Round – Season 1 – Season 2
1st  – $11 – $14
2nd – $8 – $10
3rd – $5 – $7
4th – $3 – $4
5th – $1 – $2
Captains have the choice to offer draft picks a 1 or 2 season contract, with the second season of the contract increasing based on the following escalations, based on the first season of the contract. These escalations are also applicable to contract offers to free agents and auction players.$4 or less – 2nd season + $1
More than $4 – less than $10 – 2nd season + $2
$10 or more – 2nd season + $3
If a captain offers a draft player a two season contract, the player has the right of refusal and can take a 1 season contract.

There will be a hard Salary Cap $40 million that teams cannot go over unless they have a Cash Exemption (see Trades). The Salary Cap will not come into play during the first season.
The season will be played as normal, with a 9 game regular season plus playoffs.
The major chances to this league coming during the 2nd and ensuing off-seasons.
2nd Off-season
The off-season will contain 3 major activity periods (Cuts, “Free” Agency, and Auction) with Trades allowed throughout the entire off-season, that will begin once the full player pool has been determined and paid for.
Captains can cut 1 player under contract each season for a $1.5 penalty against the cap (cap hit) for the following season

Captains are not penalized with a cap hit if a player decides to not return between seasons. That cap money is immediately freed up and available for use heading into the free agent period. A player not returning the following season does not count as a ‘cut’ against a captain.
No cuts can be made after free agency starts. Deadline for cuts will be determined each season
“Free” Agency
Any player who’s contract has expired, or has been cut, and is also returning for the following season up will be subject to the rules of free agency
Every “free” agent must be signed before the auction draft
Contracts to free agents, and auction pool players, can only be offered as a whole number or .5
Player A – 1 season @ $2
Player B – 2 seasons @ $4.5 and $6.5
All bids are made known to all the captains so each captain has a chance to bid on each player. To sign a player captains must also have enough cap space to sign additional players to get to the required 6 players
Free agents must sign with the highest bidding team. This will prevent free agents from joining a friend’s team for below market value.
Mike Strange will not be able to join Matty Bell’s team for a $4 contract if he is offered more $ from a different team.
Preference is given to contract offers that are for 2 seasons if there are two contracts offered of the same first season amount.
Offer 1 – 1 season @ $4.5
Offer 2 – 2 seasons @ $4.5 and $6.5
Offer 2 would be awarded the free agent player
If there are two identical bids in season length and contract money, the free agent can choose their team.
“Free” Agency period will be determined each season
Auction Draft
Every subsequent season after the first, there will be an auction to add new players to the league. Every new player to the league will be a part of the auction draft. This will be in lieu of the traditional ‘draft’ in order to prevent tanking down the stretch of a regular season.
The auction draft is the last off-season transaction period before the season starts
Team captains bid on each player in the auction pool and every team must have 6 players at the end of the auction
Captains must have enough cap room to sign the player bid on plus additional cap room to have the required 6 players signed to the team for the bid to be valid
The minimum contract offer is $1 for 1 season.
Preference is given to contract offers that are for 2 seasons if there are two contracts offered of the same first season amount.
Ties in bids (same $ and length) to the same player will be broken by worst record the previous season. That captain will be awarded the player.
A player in the auction pool cannot refuse a contract offer of 2 seasons.
Auction date will be determined each season
Can be made at any time during the off-season, from the beginning of the Cuts until the very last player in the auction pool has been given a contract.
Trades must involve an equal number of players and can include Cash Exemptions. The monetary value of the contracts and cash exemptions must be within 125%
Team 1 Trades player A – 1 season left at $6
Team 2 Trades player B – 1 season left at $3
Team 2 can offer a Cash Exemption of anywhere from $2 to $4.5 in order to make the trade work. This exemption will be added to Team 1’s Salary Cap and deducted from Team 2’s
Captains can offer a 1 season contract extension to the player(s) they traded for if it fits under the salary cap. The additional dollar value will be assigned by the escalation chart based on the players salary for the upcoming season. Players can decline the contract extension but cannot prevent the trade.
Additional Notes
Captains that vacate their team between off-seasons will be replaced. A new captain must fall within the original captain’s APR limit AND must be a Free Agent during the off-season that a captain vacates. A player from within the APR range on the team that has a vacant captain spot can become a captain if they are not a free agent.
At the end of the Auction period, there can be no more trades. The season will then proceed as normal, with a 9 game regular season plus playoffs, until the next offseason, when you do it all over again!
I’m not saying that Sam and I are saying that we should implement this next season. But we’re also not, not saying that.
Comments, concerns, ideas?


  • So is this for B Draft or can anyone sign up for it? Cool idea. Might cost me my job though b/c I would spend just as much time managing this team as Theo Epstein does his (except his time is an actual team).

  • If we were to do it (yes please) it would be an open league that would run at CAC, the night TBD. It wouldn’t be ‘A’ or ‘B’ just, Franchise. Either Tuesday or Wednesday seems to make the most sense right now.

  • In season trades. 1 day half way through the season. All trades made. So, max someone could be on during a season would be 2 teams. Gives GMs a chance salvage whatever is left. Same rules would apply as off season trades

    • The problem with in-season trades is that you could trade the world for a good team in Season 1 and then just not captain in Season 2. Obviously a dickhead move, but I’m sure it would happen.

      • that could happen but is unlikely – if a captain gave up everything for 2 really good players would an incoming captain really be that upset about it if he had 2 first round caliber guys under control? Plus if most of the incoming guys are on a 1 season contract then you start fresh in the FA and Auction pool

        • How would incoming captains be assigned to teams vacated by outgoing captains if multiple spots open up, especially if one team is clearly better than another?

          • if a player on a team that has an open captaincy is within the captain APR limit (20-30? not sure what it will be yet) and would like to captain that team, they’d get first priority.

            After that if there are still multiple captain spots open it will have to be randomly assigned by a lottery.

            Captains taking over would have to be willing to be a captain no matter which team they ‘won’

  • I will review the details in more depth to poke some holes, etc. but all I can say is that I’m in favor of anything that maximizes the importance of intelligence and strategy since its clear I’m head and shoulders above everyone else (especially with Matty gone).

    • We’re all anxiously awaiting the holes you poke Noah, that way I can plug them!

  • In-season trades would be a sticking point because of the way the stats system is currently set up – anyone traded wouldn’t get their stats on their main player profile b/c we’d have to create a new one, so ‘Matt Kaplan 2’ would need to be made when Kap is under performing at mid-season and given away for pennies on the dollar

    • We have yet to determine exactly how we are going to pick captains. There will probably be an APR floor and ceiling (20-30?) not sure WHICH league the APR will be based on, however. Depends on the pool of players as it signs up I guess

  • Seriously, I’ll never give Tibbs another compliment in my life, but dude good stuff, I want in.

  • Love it! It is like the super league…but better! I just want Jesse to be a captain for this, he will have all season to make terrible trades. How long until he has somehow turned his starting roster into himself, chao, chao again and uh, dick kensworth.

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