Monday, July 11, 2016

Fantasy Olympics 2016 Overview

Welcome to the 2016 Fantasy Olympics! We're bringing it back from 2012 with only a few minor changes. As a benefit to all of us (myself included) here is a review of how it all works:

While NBC's Olympic television coverage would suggest the USA is the only country competing, Fantasy Olympics is all about rooting for those countries you know very little about competing in athletic events you didn't know existed.

Fantasy Olympics is a low time-consumption competition in which participants can put in as much or as little effort as they would like. It consists of two main activities, a draft before the Olympics and a daily choice during the Olympics.


  • The Country Draft (Pre-Olympics) - During the month of July we will take turns drafting a small selection of countries and this effectively will become your Olympic roster and you score points for their medal success.
  • The Event Selection (During the Olympics) - During each of 16 days of the Olympics there will be three select Olympic events awarding medals. Each player will select one of the three events and will score for all of their countries that medal in that event. See schedule below:



The Details

The Country Draft:

  • There will be five rounds of the draft, everyone will select at least five countries.
  • First round draft order will be generated via random number generator.
  • It is a snake-style draft (it will reverse order for the second round).
  • With historical dominance from the big three (US, China, Russia), additional late-round picks will be given to players who don't end up with the a top three draft pick.
The Event Selection:
  • Each day of the Olympics will have three events available to select from.
  • You will select one of the three events.
  • The will score for any and all of your countries that medal in the event you select.
    • Gold medal Gold = 6 points
    • Silver medal Silver = 4 points
    • Bronze medal Bronze = 2 points
  • In the instance that a single country earns multiple medals in an event, only one medal will count.

Let's look at some examples:

2012 Men's 200m (T&F) Olympic Medalists:
Gold medal   Jamaica
Silver medal   Jamaica
Bronze medal   Jamaica

In 2012, if a player drafted Jamaica and selected this event, only Usain Bolt's Gold medal (6 points) would count. No points for the additional medals for Jamaica.

Now let's say you were building a strategy around distance events on the schedule and decided to draft the countries of Kenya & Ethiopia specifically for their historically dominant distance athletes:

2012 Women's 5000m (T&F) Olympic Medalists:
Gold medal   Ethiopia
Silver medal   Kenya
Bronze medal   Ethiopia
Assuming you drafted both Ethiopia/Kenya and selected this event on the schedule, you would earn a total of 10 points, Ethiopia's Gold Medal (6 points) and Kenya's Silver Medal (4 points). The Bronze medal is disregarded as Ethiopia may only score one medal this event (Gold).

Team Events:

Lastly, the event schedule focuses on a lot of events that take place over the course of a single day. This leaves out many events that take place over the course of the Olympics like Basketball, Golf or Tennis. Four of these events were also selected:
  • Men's Beach Volleyball
  • Women's Field Hockey
  • Men's Water polo
  • Men's Handball
You don't have to do anything for these events (other than consider drafting countries that might medal), but they reward slightly more points to countries that medal:
  • Gold medal Team Gold = 10 points
  • Silver medal Team Silver = 6 points
  • Bronze medal Team Bronze = 3 points

If you'd like to revisit the London games you can find our closing summary here. Draft order is coming soon. If you're curious what 2012's draft looked like: