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Old 11-02-2015, 05:47 PM   #1
Potemkin
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Default Why you (probably) won't win fantasy sports

Why you (probably) won't win money playing DraftKings, FanDuel

By Drew Harwell
The Washington Post
After sitting through your 30th DraftKings or FanDuel commercial of the day -- Scott H. won $15,000 off a $5 bet! -- you may find yourself thinking: Maybe I should try my hand at daily fantasy sports. It's like that fantasy-football league at work, just sped up a little, right? How hard could it be?

The game, as the ads say, is straightforward: A bettor pays an entry fee (between 25 cents and about $5,000), joins one of the site's many contests and then starts crafting a fantasy team by choosing professional athletes (each with a price; the team can't go over a "salary cap") and then getting scored on how well they play on the real-life field.


But beyond the simple concept, daily fantasy gameplay is loaded with quirks, risks and hidden pitfalls that critics say can stack the deck for veterans while casual players lose out.

"I've thought from day one that this game was sort of broken from a game-design perspective, and I still think so," said Ed Miller, a poker author and game consultant. "These are fundamental game-design flaws, and the problems are built into it in a way that is not easy to fix."

First, let's get a few basics out of the way: Daily fantasy sports is betting, full stop. If bettors don't want to lose money, there are plenty of places they can keep it nice and cozy somewhere else. Lots of people win, and lots of people lose but still have fun anyway.

But the game's structure and fairness isn't just a cause of concern for new players. It also presents a potential minefield for the billion-dollar sites' corporate leaders and investors, whose success depends on persuading players to keep coming back to play.

As New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman, who launched an inquiry into the sites following a big data leak, told CBS This Morning on Thursday: "No one's going to place bets if they think it's a rigged casino."

The "sharks"

When you go to Las Vegas, you're probably not sidling up to the poker table with the best players in the casino. The all-stars generally choose the top tables and biggest buy-ins on which to make their cash.

But in daily fantasy sports, any player of any skill level can play any game -- and, often, the best bettors play in bulk, betting on hundreds of matches at the same time. If you're a newbie, there's a very high chance you'll play against the best on the site, and that they may wipe you out.

The industry's top-ranked player, a 26-year-old Amherst College graduate named Saahil Sud who plays full-time as "maxdalury," enters almost every game, every day, from thousand-dollar buy-ins to chump-change games.

Look at his numbers for a week ago Monday on RotoGrinders, a player stats site, when he anted up for almost 600 games on DraftKings -- and won a ton of them. He loves new players! Last week, he retweeted another player, saying, "Someone come play with me and @maxdalury #itseasy."

More: http://www.dailyherald.com/article/2...ess/151019683/
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Old 11-02-2015, 08:22 PM   #2
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It's gambling. How long will it continue before it is shut down?
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