Earlier this week, Toronto FC received bad news involving Bright Dike‘s injury. He will miss the entire 2014 MLS season due to a torn achilles tendon. With this unfortunate news in mind, newly-transferred designated player Jermain Defoe‘s MLS fantasy stock now skyrockets.
In the offseason, Toronto brought in USMNT players Defoe and Michael Bradley within the same week and bolstered their lineup after a mediocre 2013 season. Between a new league, unfamiliar teammates and pressure to shine in MLS, Defoe has his work cut out for him as he transitions from EPL side Tottenham Spurs to Toronto. Let’s look at Defoe’ fantasy value this season.
Defoe’s experience in both EPL and on the USMNT will be great for TFC, but will be bad news for opposing defenses. It is clear that Defoe will be the consistent starting striker for Toronto, and that is good news for fantasy owners. Game after game, it will be Defoe taking defensive back lines on in one vs. one scenarios, and if I were to predict, I think Defoe will get a shot on goal eight out of 10 times. Of those 10 times, Defoe might find the net about half of them.
With his MLS arrival, Defoe is easily one of league’s best strikers. Yes, we should not assume that Defoe will dominate the league, but he should still be successful from a fantasy angle.
By having another solid, exceptional USMNT player on the team, Defoe’s fantasy value is worth even more. With Bradley starting in the midfield, his accurate passes will bring chances for Defoe. More chances and shots on goal means one thing: more goals. With all three of those things increasing, DeFoe’s points should be close to double-digits every game.
As a reminder, MLS fantasy teams have $120 million dollars to fill their 18-man roster. Defoe expectedly does not come with a cheap price tag. However, he has the potential to become the cream of the crop in the league, and that would carry over to the fantasy points. Defoe’s potential can be compared to you eating at a fancy restaurant. The bill will cost a lot, but it will be worth it because of the value of the steak, or in this case Defoe’s play.
While Defoe is worth spending $10.5 million on, sacrifices will have to be made in other areas. By sacrifices, I mean you will have to take cheaper priced players. This does not mean your team will suffer, but it will take more effort to figure out who to pick. One wise option would be saving $1.0 million by choosing a solid goalkeeper option in Zac MacMath at only $5.0 million.
Defoe will be one of the best MLS strikers. You would be a fool to not pick him. He will be a goal scoring machine game in and game out. Just a friendly reminder though — TFC and Defoe do not play in MLS Week 1, so you will need a cheap backup for the opening weekend.
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