Breaking Down the DK 400K Micro Millions Main Event

It was a dominant performance.

Maxdalury captured the DraftKings 400K Micro Millions Main Event like a true boss. He finished in first place…and third…and fourth…and seventh…and 291 other cashes. Yes. 295 cashes in a single tournament by my count, out of 400 lineups. Now that is having a night.

The huge volume (400 lineups) and prize money captured my attention, and raised several questions. How profitable is this long term? Did anyone else try this and fail? How many lineups does the average player enter? Is mass entry alone enough to give you an edge, or is success truly based on the skill of the player regardless of how many entries?

I felt the need to examine how others chose to participate in this contest, and attempt to make sense of any advantage to be gained purely by playing so many rosters.

(Being just one tournament – I caution that this is for illustration purposes, and that more data is needed to truly examine “few entries” vs. “multi-multi entries” in a large field GPP.)

Let’s first take a look at how players entered this contest:

Total Entries: 22,900
Unique Participants: 8564
Largest # of Lineups: 400

Number of Entries Number of Entrants % of Entrants
1 Entry 5166 60.3%
2 Entries 1410 16.46%
3 Entries 631 7.37%
4 Entries 339 3.96%
5 Entries 334 3.90%
6-10 Entries 425 4.96%
11-25 Entries 209 2.44%
25-50 Entries 33 0.39%
50-100 Entries 12 0.14%
> 100 Entries 5 0.06%

What we can assume by looking at this information is that there aren’t many DFS players deploying a strategy of entering more than 10 lineups. Roughly 76.5% of people who decided to play this event fired 1 or 2 bullets. Only 5 people entered more than 100 lineups. The pool of players entering with huge volume is small.

Return on Investment

Next, we look at profitability. If entering a boat load of lineups only works when you hit the big score… then surely there will be winners and losers among the pool of players who chose to mass enter the contest. Here are some interesting notes on the outcomes:

- Maxdalury wasn’t the only person who entered 400 lineups. Another user entered 400 lineups, but lost about $5,500 on the investment.

- One player entered 271 Lineups at cost of $5,420, and only returned $30 back to his bankroll.

- Of the 10 players who played the most lineups, only 3 returned a profit.

- The total revenue of those who entered 100 or more lineups was over $260,000. Two of these players had multiple top finishes and constitute the majority of the winnings. 4 of these players showed a negative return. (note: two players entered exactly 100 lineups)

- Only 1 player who entered between 25 and 100 lineups profited more than $1,000. By contrast, 3 players within that same group lost more than $1000

- If you profited more than $100 – congratulations. You’re one of roughly 100 players that managed to accomplish this feat.

Key Assumptions

Looking at a single tournament isn’t the best way to evaluate the broader strategy of multi-entering. However, I am prepared to make a few assumptions we can evaluate in the future.

1. With a top heavy pay structure (very top heavy in this case: 25% to 1st) – you must be confident in your DFS skills when deciding to pay up for big volume. A big score is required just to recoup your investment, and there is no guarantee you can make that happen regardless of how many bullets you fire.

Translation: Individual skill is perhaps MORE important when investing heavily. If you don’t find the baseline premise for a few days in a row (for Maxdalury – it was a combo of SAC vs.ORL game – Oladipo/Gay/Frye/Cousins/Payton) then you could find yourself in the middle of a hefty downswing.

2. When this strategy works – it can work REALLY well. It is worth entertaining the idea if you have the bankroll to support variance.

3. Turning a profit in a large field GPP is difficult. The illustration of how relatively few players return serious profit was a reminder to play for the top prize. Nobody sets a lineup with intention to lose… but it should go without saying that construction needs to center around maximizing upside, and finishing in first place.

Editor’s Note: Check out this forum thread for more discussion on multi-entering GPPs.

About the Author

  • Chris Gimino (ChrisGimino)

  • Chris Gimino is a top mind in the DFS industry and one of the primary contributors at RotoGrinders including one of the most accurate ownership projection systems in the industry. A multiple time live-finalist, Chris delivers actionable tools and advice for RotoGrinders Premium subscribers that helps them make informed decisions for their lineup builds.

Comments

  • GQ1NYC

    I’m a three lineup guy max. I enjoy single entry contest because you dont have to worry about someone loading up with 100 entries. I remember the last million dollar NFL contest where some guy had over 600 lineups. thats not skill, that just generating lineups. I too wish they would cap all tournament entries.

  • risaac67

    There was a lot of concern about the 400 entry guy. I saw a lot of people were upset about it. I am glad someone did this research to show that just because you enter 400 does not guarantee you victory. I think this article illustrates that even you have the bankroll to play multiple entries, you still have to be good to win.

  • devobrain

    I was one of the guys who entered in 100 entries, but it was only b/c I saw guys like McJester, Maxdalury, and others who had kept entering in LUs as the day went by. I was only thinking initially of entering in 50 LUs (30 were secured with tickets), however in my head it became more of an arms race, when I saw others entering in way more LUs than myself. The only way I felt somewhat competitive with them was if I had 100 entries or so. It turned out to be the right move, but nonetheless, I hated that I felt I needed to invest more just to have a shot in this kind of tournament. It really feels like to win these kinds of tournaments it ends up being who has the bigger bankroll to spend. Unfortunately, it’s the nature of the beast. With 400 LUs out there, you can afford to take more risks than the player with 1-5 entries, therefore increasing your odds of having that 1 LU that hits.

    Props though to Maxdalury, he took a big gamble and it paid off. But I wouldnt mind if the sites themselves set a limit on how many entries one player can enter in these types of tournaments.

  • aloeup

    • 2014 DraftKings FFWC Finalist

    @Phatjer300 said...

    Max isnt the first person and he wont be the last, McJester is still the King of Giant GPPs with hundreds of Entries. But too the guy who entered 237 times and only won 1 cash of $30. Id quit DFS for good. I won 10 entries Via $5 satellites that were going on everyday. 3/10 cashed .Im a 1 too 2 Lineup guy, I play for fun. Hope to win some cash. i think 400 entries is Absurd. A limit should be put in place. Max at 100 and maybe more on bigger tourn. Great Writeup Chris.

    If they put the max at 100 entires then they would have to greatly reduce the size of these huge prize pools. The amount of entires somebody enters doesn’t matter IMO. I don’t see the difference between 5,000 LU’s entered by 4,000 people OR 5,000 LU’s entered by 5,000 people – either way you’re competing against 5,000 LU’s, period. You don’t notice the many times these multiple entires don’t cash. It’s only when they’re at the top of the leader board that it becomes bulletin board material. I don’t think these guys should penalized for: 1. Having a big bank roll, 2. Being very good at what they do. We’d all do it if we could.

    With all that said, I think this was a great piece. Good to show the breakdown of the numbers and dispel some of the conspiracies.

  • lux_tx

    Great article, Max styled on everyone and caused a scene on Grinders lol. Great strategy that can work if your good enough and have the bankroll. Absurd Phatjer? The only thing absurd is the bank he just collected lol.. if it works it works, and its obvious these guys play for more than just fun, we should all take notes and step our game up

  • lux_tx

  • lux_tx

    @GQ1NYC said...

    I’m a three lineup guy max. I enjoy single entry contest because you dont have to worry about someone loading up with 100 entries. I remember the last million dollar NFL contest where some guy had over 600 lineups. thats not skill, that just generating lineups. I too wish they would cap all tournament entries.

    Everyone! This man found the secret to winning a million dollars look quick! All you have to do is create over 600 lineups and you are guaranteed to win, no skill needed!

    Honestly though, you play with what you can.. our lane is the single entry contest until we have the bank roll.. there is no secret guarantee like having 600 lineups because if that were true everyone would be rich, but in real life without a strategy & skills you’ll go broke

  • noddy

    It doesn’t matter who enters how many lineups. You are still competing against the same number of lineups. Great article!!!

  • mball1297

    Very interesting article. As you say, keep in mind that this is an extremely small sample size. The other massive-entry players will probably have great days or weeks at other times. I think skill is always important in this game, but luck also always plays a huge role. Like with a lot of things, the guys with the most money can take the most risks and then profit the most.

  • mball1297

    @aloeup said...

    The amount of entires somebody enters doesn’t matter IMO. I don’t see the difference between 5,000 LU’s entered by 4,000 people OR 5,000 LU’s entered by 5,000 people – either way you’re competing against 5,000 LU’s, period.

    The difference is in the specific entries you see. Yes, either way, it’s 5,000 entries, but someone putting in 400 entries will take more risks than someone putting in 5. If I have 5-10 entries to use, I’m not going to take a shot on Eric Decker against Miami. If I have 200 entries, I might give him a shot in one or two of them. So, if it’s 5,000 lineups from 5,000 people, there’s almost no chance you’re going to see fliers like that.

  • fleming45

    @Mod518 said...

    8% of the entrants have 43.6% of the entries. What a joke.

    Think first. Without the sharks playing the volume they do in these massive GPPs, then guess what? These GPPs wouldn’t be anywhere near the size they are this year. These guys can’t win every tournament, so have fun, keep getting better, and don’t forget that the industry is soooo big now that you can lose 364 of 365 days and still profit for the year with just 1 big finish.

  • Kleano

    Great post, was hoping someone would break down the entry numbers of that tourney.

  • Fillip09

    I wonder how many of those entries Max paid total entry fee for…I am thinking zero. I played a few .25 satellites and he was entered in all of them. I checked daily in most of the really cheap satellites and he was in most so he probably paid a fraction for the 400 entries being he is a top player. I see a few of the top winning guys go this route as the competition generally consists of guys with small bankrolls, newbies, or non pro’s who don’t make a living at DFS.

  • MrIntensity

    Great job! but let us not group together top players and goofballs. Not all heavy volume guys are winners, try to make money or care about anything at all. Instead of viewing some monkey who entered 237 times and cashed once as a sign we should play less volume because it is obviously optimal. We should thank science that he has not lost all his money yet or become discouraged. This gravy train does not last forever see poker. Enjoy it!

  • MrIntensity

    Also of many of entries are unique? I see a lot of line ups with 3 to 5 entries per player.

  • PopFlyBoy

    • 599

      RG Overall Ranking

    • Ranked #17

      RG Tiered Ranking

    Good to know that “buying” GPPs doesn’t really work. Great analysis.

  • pandabear415

    I played like 5 entries and won a GPP but I have played 36 entries in one GPP and only came out winning 2.50.

    400 entries is absurd. 100 is bad enough. even 50. even 36 for me!

    I play from 5 to 15 a day now and 15 is a bit much already. live and learn

  • xraysteve

    Great article!!!

  • Cameron

    RG Co-Founder

    • 2014 FanDuel NFL Survivor Champion

    • 2016 RG Season Long Champion: NFL

    Looks like Blogger of the Month prize has been locked-up early :-)

  • GamblerGrinder

    Good stuff.

    Entering multiple lineups is all about the sleepers that you pick. If you have a genius sleeper that you put in a lot of lineups you will profit. Obviously this can backfire to and cost you $$$.

    Nothing against Max… but I question his strategy in this GPP. Think he had way too many lineups with Frye. Think he got a bit lucky Frye was way over his value. Anyways still a dominate performance.

  • jimmykick

    id like to know what his return was. I dont recall the entry fee or what first place paid. Nor do I recall what third…and fourth…and seventh…and 291 other cashes paid.

    Great article. Those guys are really exploiting the system.

  • Iforgotmorethanuknow

    Great article

  • milldarrio

    Lituation

  • sugewhite

    Great article!
    Agree that there should be a better cap on number of entries, but realize these multiple entry guys help support these sites…

  • FluentBets813

    If you look into it a little more you will also see maxdalury won with multiple entries the next night too

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