Only mistrust of fellow owners can motivate trade veto requests

By Marty Gitlin |

Perhaps I shouldn't have been shocked to read about a Fantasy league in which every trade prompts two or three veto votes. But I was.

Not that the notion hasn't occurred to me. It's bound to when you've been in the same league for 25 years. I have heard of many deals since 1989 that prompted the following words to escape my lips: "Wow! How stupid!" But that exclamation has always motivated me simply to wish I had been the one to take advatage of the nitwit willing to accept such an offer.

Don't get me wrong. Our league is generally filled with knowledgeable and astute owners/general managers. The occasions in which a trade even raises an eyebrow are rare. That's why nobody in that quarter-century has ever requested that a trade be vetoed. The idea that a deal should be scrapped suggests that an owner has surrendered or is seeking at his own expense to either aid or destroy a fellow league member still in the race.

That concept is so foreign to the primary league with which I am associated that it's unfathomable despite its 18-team depth and 24-player rosters. Owners whose teams are in last place, even in September, are clawing to escape the cellar. One and all are trying to move up in the standings, even if they are playing for nothing but pride. We're as cutthroat as they come - 25 years can breed incredible competitiveness and intensity - but nobody has made a bad trade on purpose.

The idea of vetoing or requesting to disallow trades smacks of distrust. Perhaps those who participate in leagues in which several of its members ask to veto every trade should seek Fantasy competition elsewhere or instruct their fellow owners to become less suspicious.

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