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New Features highlight the 2013 Fantasy Challenge

12/06/2012, 6:00pm EST
By Alexander Hinkley for NLL.com

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Registration for NLL fantasy lacrosse will begin soon with exciting improvements in store for 2013.

Registration for the 2013 NLL Fantasy Lacrosse Challenge will be opening soon with a ton of new improvements lined up for this year. There were over 2,900 registered teams last season and this year’s new features will make playing fantasy lacrosse easier and more fun for both hardcore and casual fantasy sports fans alike.

The fantasy interface will have much more information available to managers this season including weekly player value changes to help distinguish whether or not the players on your team are performing well. Determining which players were gaining or losing value was difficult last year unless you wrote the numbers down somewhere at the start of each week. This season, you will be able to see the changes on a week-to-week basis which should help to make hot streaks and cold streaks more readily apparent.

A player’s opponent for that week will also now be displayed on the “My Team” and “Transfer” pages of the interface. This will help active fantasy managers avoid players who have unfavorable matchups or bye weeks without having to waste time cross-referencing each player with their team schedule.

The rosters themselves are also getting a bit of a revamp. We’re cutting out one of the transition slots this season, which will bring the total number of roster spots for each team down to nine (from 10). With only 40 active fantasy players eligible at transition last season, the fewest of any position other than goaltender, it didn’t make sense to require managers to fill nearly a third of their roster with them so one got chopped.

Another big roster change this season is that we are moving from using individual goalies to a team goalie system. This was a feature that several fantasy managers suggested at the end of last season due to the inconsistency in goaltender scoring and should help to make teams that use multiple goaltenders, such as Buffalo and Minnesota did last year, more reliable. The way it works is that you choose a team to fit your goalie slot rather than just one player, and then earn fantasy points for either goalie. Let’s say you bought “Minnesota” as your goaltender, you would then earn points when either Evan Kirk or Tyler Carlson is between the pipes.

Part of the fun of fantasy sports is being able to sift through player stats and identify trends. That’s why we’re making more stats available to you right on the interface. Starting this season, you’ll be able to click on a player’s name and a lightbox will open with his stats. One other useful improvement when it comes to player information is that players will finally be able to be marked with various types of statuses letting you know if they are injured or otherwise not on the active roster.

Sign-ups for the fantasy game will officially open over the course of the next week. Stay tuned to NLL.com and the league's official Facebook page for more registration details. If you registered a team last year and remember your login information, you will not need to register again for this season.

Be sure to register and get your rosters set before the 2013 NLL regular season begins on Saturday, Jan. 5 when the defending champion Rochester Knighthawks take on the Washington Stealth at Comcast Arena in Everett, Wash.

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