Alt+Tab: Building a Bankroll While Looking "Busy" at Work (12/14)

I’ve been playing DFS since 2014 with varying levels of success. Despite a couple of GPP wins, I never built a consistent bankroll. I was making regular deposits into my DK account and never built a solid foundation to fund my playing. In hindsight, the problem is obvious: I wasn’t good at GPP’s and that’s all I played. I never played cash games because there wasn’t the allure of an ultra-sexy payout. As a result, any money I deposited to my account would quickly disappear and I had to start over.

Towards the end of last year’s NBA regular season, I started only playing single-entry cash games. This quickly became a much more profitable approach. I wanted to see where this strategy could take me over the course of an entire season, so I started fresh with the ’19-’20 NBA season. I wanted to write this blog to document my progress towards organically growing my bankroll. Hopefully, I can share what I’ve learned by analyzing what works and what doesn’t.

December 15th Update

Yesterday. Was. A. Disaster.


I believe this is the lowest I’ve placed in a cash game. Not only did I fail to cash out, but I nearly finished in last place in every contest.

Here are actual photographs of me watching my lineup throughout the evening:

7:30 PM

9:30 PM

11:00 PM

8:00 AM Today

It was rough. Needless to say, it set me back a good amount and dropped my bankroll below $500. Here’s where I currently stand:

YTD Deposits: ($165)
Current Bankroll Total: $494.08
Net Gain/(Loss): $329.08
Organic Growth Rate: 199.44%

So What Happened?

Entry Fees: ($50)
Total Winnings: $0

I almost never play Ben Simmons because I’ve been burned by him so many times before. My lineup was going to include one of Simmons or Tobias Harris, so I opted for the savings of $1,000 and went with Harris. By no means was he a bust – he hit 5.66x value which is fine. Given how the rest of my lineup performed, though, “fine” wouldn’t be enough.

The fast-paced game environment was a better fit for Simmons, and his 55.25 FPTS definitely confirm that. I let the “I’m always wrong about this guy” mindset make the decision for me last night even though it was clear who the better play was. The projections agreed with it, the ownership agreed with it, and the results definitely agreed with it. It can be hard to ignore your bias against a player that has burned you before, but I really needed to last night.

The 9 FPTS provided by Matisse Thybulle set me back further. Since he can play multiple positions, his minutes were pretty secure since Al Horford would be out. He ended up playing 27 minutes, so his opportunity was there, but he didn’t deliver. This was a bad choice on my part as well. He’s not a high-usage player and is really volatile.

Domantas Sabonis was a massive disappointment as well. This seemed like a great matchup and I thought he was a lock for 45 FPTS. I’m not sure what the problem was here. Looking at the gameflow tracker, it doesn’t seem like he got into foul trouble. It just looks like he was really inefficient in the time he was on the floor. At a salary of $8k+, that hurts.

KAT and Kawhi Leonard both had huge games, but this was hardly a surprise. It was a beautiful game environment and it seemed unlikely they would bomb. While they did great, the 50% ownership on each means that I didn’t gain any leverage on the field. Same with De’Anthony Melton. It was a coin-toss between him and Tyus Jones, and both of them did fine. Again, the high ownership doesn’t help anything.

I was also going to play one of Omari Spellman or Marquese Chriss. CLEARLY I made the wrong decision and that really hurt. Spellman played nearly as many minutes as Chriss (21 vs. 23), but Spellman’s 0.35 FPTS/min was lethal. My last hope was a low-owned Bogdan Bogdanovic. Spoiler alert: that didn’t work at all. He was a huge letdown despite playing 29 minutes. He seemed like a great value play at $4.7k, but there wasn’t much fantasy production left over after Buddy Hield put up a massive game.

This is a demoralizing loss, but we need to put it behind us and keep moving. The important thing is to not chase my losses tonight. It’s easier said than done, but I’m determined to stay at $50 in entries.

So What Did We Learn Today?

  • I need to let go of personal biases against certain players. In DFS, decision need to be made based on logic and reason instead of emotion. Everything set up well for Ben Simmons and fading him was a mistake.
  • Don’t put too much faith in low salary players. I had too much faith in Bogdan and it backfired.
  • Stay the course and resist the urge to chase your losses.

Good luck tonight!

About the Author


  • sochoice

    • 2017 DraftKings FBWC Finalist

    • 2017 FanDuel WFFC Champion

    Great writing. Yes, your lineup stunk, but at least you have a sense of humor about it today.

  • TMH887

    @sochoice said...

    Great writing. Yes, your lineup stunk, but at least you have a sense of humor about it today

    Thank you, sir! Much appreciated!

  • bradleyvos

    Enjoyed this post – good detail into the process and psychology. You will be alright – all part of the grind!

  • TMH887

    @bradleyvos said...

    Enjoyed this post – good detail into the process and psychology. You will be alright – all part of the grind!

    I appreciate it, man! Thanks!

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