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What kind of trader are you? Are you the free wheeling dealer? Are you the guy who worries about another owner getting over on you? Are you a trader that likes to offer only fair trades the first time? Maybe your style is to take a little hit nowtrader to build equity for later trades?

Maybe you are the guy who is always looking to win every trade? Are you the owner that sends out a ridiculous offer to gauge interest? Are you the guy that sits on trades forever hoping that they expire or get taken back? Or maybe you just hit reject without giving a reason? If you are more about the second set of questions, this article might not be for you…

Those are all great ways to not make that many trades in a dynasty league and/or any other kind of league. The thing that is unique about dynasty leagues is that the owners hopefully are constants, aka the same owners year after year and relationships count. You may never be friends or friendly with everyone in your league, but at least you can find out their needs, help teams acquire what they want, and assist them if you can.

Talk to them first, find out what they need. Make it about them.

If you want to be a successful trader, find out what the other team perceives itself needing. There is no point offering a QB when an owner feels that their biggest weakness is at TE. Ask the potential trading partner a question: if you could improve one position or aspect of your roster what would it be, then wait for the answer.  You know what you need and now you know what the other owner desires!

It is ok to give a fair offer with someone, the first time. Some people love to talk someone into trading with them. I have a friend that has burned through six leagues with his trading tactics after agreeing to a trade then he: raises the stakes, changes offers for different players, etc.  Sure you might get a great deal from someone thereby winning the trade, but will they trade with you again?

Legitimate offers let the other owner know you aren’t playing around; you want to get a deal done. That is the same when you take a woman out, don’t take her to McDonald’s and talk down to her, and then expect a wild ending. Respect and listening skills go a long way helping you get lucky in life and in fantasy football.

Take care of who needs to get taken care of first

Who has the immediate need, you or your potential trading partner? The owner that needs to make the trade is the one that has the most gain. I always try to be helpful to another team, but not too helpful, as I may need help later. By letting an owner improve their situation before you do, it may go a long way.  When I am doing well in a league and need to improve a spot, I am willing to trade a young player for a proven player to make sure I go farther in the playoffs. This way an up and coming team gets youthful help while your team gets a productive older player to push you farther into the playoffs, win-win not #winning.

When I am trying to rebuild a dynasty team, I try finding teams that are doing very well and that have a lot of young players they aren’t using in their lineups. I am more than willing to trade my older guys to get younger and acquire more rookie draft picks. Once I have a solid team, I am willing to trade those draft picks for solid younger players. Rookies are as great as a shiny new quarter, but they spend the same as an old quarter. I prefer trading for 2nd and 3rd year players that haven’t hit yet for unproven 2nd round and higher rookie picks. The relationships that you build with a good trade can lead to more trades and more rewards.

Will another partner help the possibilities?

If a team needs help at a position that you aren’t strong, you still can help that team make a trade. By using the relationships that you have built with friendships and trades, your team could gain an advantage through goodwill and specialized owner knowledge that may be quite helpful. By being of service, karma can help you out when one of your players get hurt/cut/etc. If your team or you are perceived as a non-threat, you may get some unexpected help. Other times, you can use your knowledge of other teams and turn that into a three-way deal that benefits everyone.

Bottom line

Dynasty leagues are built on relationships: some good and some bad. If you help out a team, they will be more likely to assist you as well. If a team you have a solid relationship is in trouble, you can help them with spare parts and they would do likewise for your team. Bottom line, relationships count when you are looking for a trade partner. Heck, I have been known to recommend another team not help a bad trading team in need unless they receive a good deal as a karma payback. By listening to how the other owner values their players, it will give you an idea on how to trade with them and how to make them feel like they won the trade. Owners that feel they won the trade will always want to come back to you again for more. Try to deal with teams that are in different stages than yours when looking for trade partners, and be willing to help a team find a good trade even if it is not with your own team.

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