Pearl Jam Fantasy Draft Recap and Predictions – Part 2

By: John Farrar | May 6, 2022

As the tour finally kicks off, I wanted to give everyone a preview of the other Pearl Jam Fantasy Leagues that are happening. Last week we covered the league that Randy and I are in, the Matt Cameron League, but there are more that our patrons and listeners are doing, and I wanted to have some fun, spotlight them and see how they’re shaping up.

Before reading, take a look at https://livefootsteps.org/LO4L_fantasy/ to see everyone’s picks, and follow along there throughout the tour to see how wrong I ended up. Good luck to everyone and thanks for signing up! Don’t worry, my predictions will most likely be completely wrong. We’ll revisit in October and see how I fared. And now, with tongue firmly planted in cheek, and with no idea of what’s actually going to happen in San Diego on Tuesday night and beyond, here are some predictions:

Dave Abbruzzese League

Bradley’s Team: Destined To Remember

Bradley went all in on Ten, a tried and true strategy for success. Nothing here sticks out like a sore thumb, and Baba is a great cover to take. He should get some streak points in the early encores, if that pays off it could be a strong team.

Jason’s Team: Red Mosquito

Despite not grabbing the song that he named his team after, Jason managed to do pretty well. He’s got Quick Escape, which will most likely get played at every single show, and he’s also on the Dirty Frank bandwagon, which if it gets played as often as it did during the Earthling shows, will be a gamechanger.

Brian A’s Team: Satan’s Bedfellow

Another team that wasn’t able to grab their namesake song. Help me out here, guys! That notwithstanding, a great group of Ten songs here should be very productive. Also I like going in on Big Wave for this west coast run, I wonder if the plan is to drop it after this leg and pick up something else for Europe. Hmm.

Eddie’s Team: Dead Man

What is it with these teams and not taking their namesake songs? Have some confidence! Anyway, despite the pessimistic moniker, this is a solid team with a good set of b-level songs. Corduroy stands out as the best pick, and if the two covers are broken out regularly, could be a great finish. I’m hoping for Happy When I’m Crying too, dude.

Chris E’s Team: The Unemployables

Alright, I give up with these team names. Chris has Rockin’ in the Free World, the best song in the draft (covers are worth 2 points each), he should do well in the early part of the set, and Army Reserve could be a sleeper, it gets played more than you might think. He doesn’t have any of the heavy hitters but it’s a solid team.

Dylan’s Team: The Better Vans

RVM, Daughter, and Release are all top-level songs. I don’t see much down the list getting played often, he’ll need Retrograde to show up more than the 1 out of 4 it did in 2021. I Won’t Back Down and Footsteps could end up being a nice surprise, especially if they’re back-to-back.

Aurelien’s Team: Dirty French

The first one with two Gigaton songs, that gives him a leg up right off the bat. Better Man and Do the Evolution will be monsters, if they get played together, and throw in an In Hiding or LBC, and he could be looking at a very good finish.

Deb’s Team: I Got deb

Finally! Someone took the song that they named their team after! That alone should make her the runaway favorite. Dance and Given to Fly should pay off nicely, along with a good sleeper pick in Wishlist. I don’t see much down the list contributing, but there’s enough to challenge here.

Abruzzese League Predicted Finish:

  1. Bradley
  2. Aurelien
  3. Deb
  4. Chris
  5. Brian
  6. Dylan
  7. Jason
  8. Eddie

Dave Krusen League

Chris A’s Team: Three Crooked Hearts

Missing an A-list song, that would really help, but those are the breaks sometimes in these drafts. He should do well in the early part of the set, another who’s hoping for more Retrograde in 2022.

Joey’s Team: The MFCs

Even Flow and RVM are guaranteed points, and he’s all in on the Untitled/MFC combo. Lukin is a wildcard, if it pairs with some of his picks that will be a nice bonus, enough for a high finish.

Brian J’s Team: Stardog Champion

A fantastic set of songs on paper, Porch, Small Town, Ledbetter, etc. If River Cross pairs up with any of those, look for a strong performance. Maybe the best set of Uncommon songs among all the leagues. One of the favorites.

Merle’s Team: Mookie’s Garden

Has the two big heavy hitters from Yield (GTF and DTE), which is always a solid strategy. Dance is automatic, and two underrated covers as well. Look for a top half finish at least.

Matt B’s Team: I’m Stone(d)

He has Rockin’ and Quick Escape, and…some other stuff. Blood, Wash, and Can’t Deny Me might be a bit of a stretch, but you never know. Rockin’ should keep him competitive at least, and there’s the Red Mosquito Resurgence factor at play as well to keep an eye on.

Henry’s Team: Bugszs

Here’s this league’s entry in the Dirty Frank sweepstakes. There’s more: Alive, Jeremy, Crazy Mary, it’s a good bunch of songs, but the bus driver again will make or break it.

Curtis’s Team: Boxers and Bags

Heavy on Vitalogy, with some sleepers (In Hiding, Whipping, Army Reserve). If things break for him, he could make a run at the title. SBWM should be one of the most-played Gigaton songs on the tour.

Craig’s Team: Bettor Man

All in on the openers, grabbing Long Road and Release, and Seven O’Clock should be one of the higher-tier Gigaton tracks. Add in Better Man and Black, and you’ve got one of the favorites.

Krusen League Predicted Finish:

  1. Brian
  2. Curtis
  3. Craig
  4. Merle
  5. Joey
  6. Henry
  7. Matt
  8. Chris

Matt Chamberlain League

Matt S’s Team: Mookie Blaylock

A team heavy on early 90’s favorites, plus he managed to grab Rockin’, which is always a recipe for success. Very good Uncommon songs as well, this should be an impressive team with a strong point total.

Mike P’s Team: Last Brexit

Another very strong team, Baba is the next best cover, and another good set of 90’s favorites. Can’t Deny Me is maybe a stretch, we’ll see if it sticks around with all the other new songs they’re going to play.

Sean R’s Team: Given to Mookie

Wow, this is going to be a tough one to call, here’s another very good team on paper. Seeing lots of opportunities for streak points as well. Setting Forth is a sneaky good cover choice as well.

Mike G’s Team: Gagaton

Here’s this league’s entry in the Dirty Frank Sweepstakes, but he also has Quick Escape, Alive, Crazy Mary, and Evolution, so there should be a solid foundation even if the bus driver doesn’t pay off.

Sean V’s Team: EvenVo

After Dance and Given To Fly, two strong songs, I’m not sure there’s enough here to make a push for the title. Watch out for Whipping, given current events that could make a comeback.

Andrew’s Team: Down (Under)

This could be a sleeper team if Red Mosquito continues its hot streak, and Last Kiss and Let Me Sleep make anything more than one-off appearances. Small Town and Porch will rack up points.

David J’s Team: Brain of J-ames

It looks like he’s going to need Wishlist to continue its 2021 resurgence, and for River Cross to be a consistent performer, to make a push for the top half. I just don’t see some of the more aggressive songs sticking around as much as they’ve done in previous tours.

Kieran’s Team: Freaky_Frank92

Some great B-level songs here, but it’s missing 1 or 2 anchor songs that can get points day in, day out. He’s going to need some luck for things to break his way.

Chamberlain League Predicted Finish:

  1. Matt
  2. Sean R.
  3. Mike P.
  4. Mike G.
  5. Andrew
  6. Sean V.
  7. David
  8. Kieran

Jack Irons League

Aaron’s Team: The Dissident Is Here

2 Gigaton songs should provide a bonus over the length of the tour. All Night and In Hiding are good value as Uncommon songs too, I like this team’s chances.

John H’s Team: Stupid Pop

Zero Gigaton songs is an interesting strategy, there’s some good stuff here that will get points, but I wonder if the lack of Gigaton will make the difference in the end.

Bryan C’s Team: Sitting Bullshit

Ahh, Dirty Frank, how often will you be played? There’s been one person willing to roll the dice in each league, and here is Bryan taking a stab. If it pays off, he’s a genius, if it doesn’t, it could be a long year.

Jimmy B’s Team: Out Of My Mind

Alive and Given to Fly, along with State, will be there all year adding points at almost every show. He also ended up with 2 Gigaton tracks, looks like a very strong team.

Frank P’s Team: Dirty Frank 2020

It’s a very good team, Corduroy and RVM are giants, but I’m not sure how many streak points he’ll be able to get. If he can luck into a few extra here and there, he’ll finish near or at the top.

Paw Paw’s Team: Can’t Deny Paw Paw

Lots of heavy emotional tracks here, Black, Immortality, Light Years, River Cross, the list goes on and on. Could pay off, considering the state of the world I’m not sure there will be many lighthearted PJ shows this year.

Steve B’s Team: Brain of 23

Better Man and Even Flow together is like the Bash Brothers of the late 80’s, hitting bombs every night. Will the supporting cast do enough to get them to the top? Hard to say, going to need a little bit of luck.

Bob F’s Team: Bob Freebird and the Cropdusters

Grabbed Rockin’, which is one of the top songs if not THE top song on the board. That, combined with 3 Gigaton songs, the most of any team in this league, makes him a strong contender.

Irons League Predicted Finish:

  1. Bob
  2. Aaron
  3. Jimmy
  4. Frank
  5. Paw Paw
  6. Bryan
  7. John
  8. Steve

Jimmy Shoaf League

Michael K’s Team: Satan’s Bed & Breakfast

Has Whipping and Wishlist, two of my sleepers, if those pay off look for a high finish. With some luck down the list, might just be there at the end.

Tom G’s Team: Echo Victory

Went all in on closers, grabbing Indifference and Ledbetter. Very nice group of songs, including Dance, should be very solid if not great.

Gabe’s Team: All Hail the Lucky Ones

Here’s our Dirty Frank team, high risk high reward on that one, but he also has Quick Escape and Never Destination to lock things down every night. Good team.

Brian T’s Team: Left the Porch

Porch and Given to Fly and…hope for the best? I always pull for the teams with the Stone songs, and Brian got Mankind, kudos to you sir.

David R’s Team: Release the Footsteps

Only missing Leatherman for the trilogy, it’s available if you need it David…We’ll see if Oceans can steal some points on this west coast run.

Randy M’s Team: Toronto Tremor Christs

I like the Release/Small Town/Seven O’Clock combo, that could end up being very good for some streak points. Not sure about the covers, but a solid team nonetheless.

Brooke K’s Team: B Girl

Good strategy grabbing the opening two Gigaton tracks, Who Ever Said and SBWM, and the Lukin/Not For You combo. Everything’s in place for a near-the-top finish.

Jason W’s Team: Mr. Faded Glory

All in on the early years, Alive, Jeremy, Once, Breath, Footsteps, these all have a chance to rack up big points and contribute some streak points along the way as well. Crazy Mary and Masters of War are a good covers combo.

Clay D’s Team: Matt tubes the bile beer

Black, Corduroy, Retrograde, and a really good set of Uncommon songs. I like this team’s chances, he has good value top to bottom.

Kirk W’s Team: Love Boat Captain’s

Wow, how did he manage to get Rockin’ AND Baba? AND 3 Gigaton tracks plus Get it Back? Hand him the championship already…unless it all goes wrong.

Shoaf League Predicted Finish:

  1. Kirk
  2. Brooke
  3. Tom
  4. Michael
  5. Clay
  6. Jason
  7. Gabe
  8. Tom
  9. David
  10. Randy
John Farrar

Content Editor & LO4L Host

I was obsessed with Pearl Jam in the early 90's, and then became a collector of their live bootlegs in the 2000's. I’ve seen them 9 times in 6 different states. I’m continuously blown away by their ability to create transcendent moments in concert. I owe them for my love of vinyl, live music, and so much more. I’m happy to have the podcast and this website as an outlet for that obsession.

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