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Podcast: An Un-American U.S. Open; Serena’s Endorsements; An Analytics Approach To Fantasy Football
Hot Takedown

Welcome to this week’s episode of Hot Takedown, our podcast where the hot sports takes of the week meet the numbers that prove them right or tear them down. On this week’s show (Sept. 1, 2015), FiveThirtyEight’s Carl Bialik previews the U.S. Open and discusses why American men’s tennis is in a slump. And be sure to keep your ear out for a special podcast with Carl throughout the Open.

After that, we discuss Darren Rovell’s tweets about Serena Williams, endorsements and race. And we look at whether there’s anything that advanced analytics can teach you about drafting your fantasy football team.

Stream the episode by clicking the play button, or subscribe using one of the podcast clients we’ve linked to above. Below are links to some of the articles we discussed on the show.

  • Carl Bialik on the decline of U.S. men’s tennis.
  • As U.S. tennis fades, Carl writes that other countries like Spain and the Czech Republic have stepped up.
  • Is Serena the greatest of all time, or just an all-time great?
  • Darren Rovell tweets about Serena Williams, and Bomani Jones (among others) responds.
  • The academic paper we discussed on the show, “Optimizing Draft Strategies in Fantasy Football” by Papa Chakravarthy.
  • Significant Digit: $500,000. That’s how much Major League Baseball paid for the domain in 2000. Grantland’s Ben Lindbergh recently wrote about baseball’s quest to buy up every team’s URL and why is holding out.

Can analytics help with your fantasy football draft?

If you’re a fan of our podcasts, be sure to subscribe on Apple Podcasts and leave a rating/review. That helps spread the word to other listeners. And get in touch by email, on Twitter or in the comments. Tell us what you think, send us hot takes to discuss and tell us why we’re wrong.

CORRECTION (Sept. 2, 10:13 a.m.): An earlier version of this post incorrectly referred to the nationality of some rising tennis players. They were from the Czech Republic, not Czechoslovakia.

Kate Fagan is a writer for espnW and a regular panelist on the FiveThirtyEight sports podcast Hot Takedown.

Chadwick Matlin was a deputy managing editor at FiveThirtyEight.

Neil Paine was the acting sports editor at FiveThirtyEight.

Carl Bialik was FiveThirtyEight’s lead writer for news.