DraftKings: How to Pick a Winning Lineup in Daily Fantasy Golf
We’ve been playing fantasy golf all our lives and have competed head-to-head with some of today’s best PGA professionals, but now that we’ve taken up careers as investors and businessmen, it’s hard to get out and play every week. Thankfully, fantasy golf has become very popular and companies like DraftKings host dozens of fantasy tournaments every week. The types of games and the amounts of money at risk can vary quite dramatically, but they are a lot of fun and can be very profitable once you figure out the right strategy for the game you’ve chosen to compete in. For now, we are enjoying the 50/50 events as we feel they are more akin to playing blackjack at the casino – you have a better chance at generating profits with a sound strategy.
Top 8 Tips for Daily Fantasy Golf
- Target Undervalued Players
- Given you have to manage your team within a $50,000 salary cap, finding undervalued players is key to helping build an optimal six player lineup. We like to leverage statistics to try to find the best undervalued options and our course fit statistic is used to validate a player’s tournament track record or figure out first time players who could perform well at each event.
- Try to Select the Winner
- Picking the winner yields you 30 bonus points plus all the benefits of a winner’s journey (lots of birdies, maybe a few eagles, birdie trains, bogey free rounds, under 70 each round, etc.). Each week, we like to pick at least one lineup that has our favorite for the week in it. Some weeks the pricing is obscene for the prohibitive favorite, but knowing the underdogs who will outperform can help offset the favorite’s salary.
- Players Who Make the Cut
- When filling out your lineup, look for players who you believe will make the cut, since two extra rounds over the weekend can make all the difference between winning and losing money. Even a round of all pars will yield you 9 points, but typically 20-30 points can be expected from a tournament round at an average course. Have players miss the cut is the quickest way to losing in a given week.
- More Aggressive Players Can Pay Off
- Since a birdie is worth 3 points while a bogey is only -0.5 points, a player who is more aggressive can score more points than the steady player. For example, a player who shoots even par but had 6 birdies and 6 bogeys would score 18 points. A player who had 2 birdies and 2 bogeys would score 12 points. Finding players who take more chances can pay off.
- Eagles Really Help
- Eagles count for 8 points, so in events when par 5s are reachable in two shots, it pays to go with those who make more eagles, all other things being equal. We’re working to factor this into our rankings as well.
- Vegas Odds
- When in doubt, see who everyone else is favoring to win a tournament. It’s a nice sanity check to make sure you’re not missing anything when making your selections.
- Choose the Right Information Source
- Stick with GolfStrat for all your fantasy golf information needs. You can sign up for DraftKings using the promo code GOLFSTRAT and get started with a 100% bonus up to $600 – essentially doubling your deposit. The minimum deposit is $5, so you can also get started with less and play lower priced games until you get the hang of it.
- Spread Your Bets
- Golf is inherently unpredictable, but a large sample size is easier to predict. We like to play several different lineups (smaller $ values) with the 10-15 players we identify as highly interesting (based on price or expected performance) each week.
- It’s also more fun to have many chances to win, especially if you’re going for the big prizes vs. the 50/50s
The DraftKings rules are quite simple. DraftKings assigns each player in the field a dollar value based on some internal algorithm but probably includes world golf ranking, recent performance and tournament history. You have a $50,000 budget each game to spend on six players. Players have salaries that range from as low as $3,000 to as high as $16,000. The goal is for your six-player team to score as many fantasy points as possible and to beat enough of your opponents to place in the money. You get 20pts for a double eagle, 8pts for an eagle, 3 points for a birdie, 0.5pts for a par, -0.5pts for a bogey and -1pt for a double or worse. Plus there are also bonuses for players finishing in the top 50 (varies by finish; 30pts to the winner), three birdies in a row (3pts), bogey free rounds (3pts), all four rounds under 70 (4pts), and hole in ones (10pts).