Fantasy Fishing: Stick with shallow-water powerhouses


Jerry Cunningham
If conditions call for it, Dean Rojas may do well by cranking off a deep-water point.

We’re back for 2016, and this year on Bassmaster Fantasy Fishing, it’s going to be awesome!

We have a great schedule to play with this season. The first event is the Bassmaster Classic on a thriving fishery. Grand Lake is consistent — and full of big largemouth bass! Fishing shallow or deep is the pro’s choice; both are good this time of the year.

I am somewhat familiar with Grand Lake, and I think it will be won shallow, up in Elk River. The Classic is hitting on Grand Lake on the prespawn/spawn transition, and the lake is so full of bass, the pros’ areas will keep replenishing.

Here are my Fantasy Fishing picks.

Bucket A: Rojas

Dean “The Machine” Rojas is a master shallow-water power fisherman. I think he’s going to flip his way into a Top 10 finish. Being from out West, Rojas has mastered the deeper water, and if conditions call for it, you’ll see him out cranking off a deep water point.

Bucket B: Christie

Local Jason Christie is my pick to win this Classic. He learned to fish on this lake, and he even notched an FLW win here back in 2013. He is a master shallow fisherman, and he can adapt to any conditions here.

Bucket C: VanDam

Kevin VanDam is still the best. Regardless of what seems like a couple of “off” seasons for him, you can’t count him out, especially in a Classic. He can fish any way possible, and he will figure out these big Grand Lake bass. Watch him show everyone he is still the greatest angler in the world.

Bucket D: Iaconelli

Mike Iaconelli is a master angler and extremely versatile. He can flip, toss a deep diver or fish a worm, and he is comfortable doing it all. The New Jersey native will shine in Okalahoma.

Bucket E: McMillan

I know Brandon McMillan from his years over at the FLW Tour; he’s part of that famous McMillan family out of Southern Florida. A shallow-water master, McMillan will excel to the top on Grand Lake.