It’s fair to say that many of the fantasy sports players are simply sports fanatics who play as a hobby. However, as you’re playing anyway, you might as well take it seriously and implement a solid strategy. The truth is that in fantasy sports, there is no such thing as ‘the’ strategy, rather it’s a series of things you have to understand well. It’s always a puzzle and not a one-way approach. In the below we share the most important tools that help you in the direction of creating a solid strategy.
First things first
When you’re just starting out playing fantasy sports, it’s best to stick to playing one sport only. Each fantasy sport has a different set of rules, type of draft, and point system. Therefore you’re best off to learn the fine things of one sport and build from there. In order to get a feel for how playing fantasy sports work, without risking real money yet, try out one of the many online mock drafts. Sports sites like ESPN and Yahoo provide them, but you’ll also find simplified versions on FanDuel and DraftKings.
While going through this mock draft process, you familiarize yourself with different players, how easy or hard it is to get your first choice and whether or not they are promising in terms of statistics. The stats are what counts most in fantasy sports. That’s because they hold valuable information about the players. Not only their potential to thrive but also their risk, for example, their past injuries.
Finding stats is not nearly as hard as filtering out the relevant information to use for your strategy. Especially with fantasy sports becoming so popular, there is a LOT of information to find out there. From previous performance to goals scored, misses and so on. The statistics you find online also provide a lot of information that doesn’t necessarily indicate anything about the quality of the player. The trick is to only take into account the statistics that actually tell you something.
There are a lot of sources to draw information from, but do your own research in terms of which one is credible. You will find a lot of sources that don’t provide the most accurate information. The problem is also that fantasy sports are a fast-paced business. That’s why particular information quickly becomes irrelevant or incomplete.
What fantasy sports players also often underestimate is the importance of common sense rather than formal stats. If a particular player has been in the news a lot lately, has problems in his private life, or maybe the upcoming matches are not on familiar terrain, all of these could indicate that a player isn’t going to perform at its best. It’s up to you to validate all the different information and above all, make sure that you rely on credible sources.
Not all fantasy sports contests are equal. An important strategy when playing fantasy sports is in the first place to know where to find value. It’s tempting to take part in the high-profile contests that everyone and their neighbor talks about, but if you want to win money, you need to look further than that. If you have clear for yourself what type of fantasy sports you want to take part in, compare different sites.
When you click on a contest, you will find information in terms of entry fee and also whether there is a GPP. That is a guaranteed prize, which means that even if there aren’t ‘enough’ participants for that contest, they will give out that prize. A guaranteed prize contest that gives $10.000 to the winner with only 100 participants is much more valuable than the same contest with 500 participants. When you learn to filter out where the value is, you have already taken the most important step to win.
Low stakes, high stakes
You might want to try out a sport that you don’t have a lot of expertise in. It can nevertheless be a good opportunity to participate but only do so for low stake contests. There are a lot of different types of contests out there. Some of them have an entry fee of only a few dollars, while others cost around $10 or $20 to take part in. Test out the market, get some experience in low stakes contests and as you gain a good understanding and build a strategy, you can move on to the higher stake contests.