Finding the Balance: Analysis, Reflection and Beyond

Happy Easter Weekend, everyone! Hopefully, you are all getting to spend lots of time with those closest to you while sneaking in whatever your current sport(s) of choice are without getting into too much trouble, and continuing to have luck in DFS! I, personally, other than dabbling here and there in some NBA postseason, have entered my annual DFS hibernation period, due to the fact I just do NFL and NBA.

However, before I jump onto my banana boat and float off into the ocean, it’s time to see what the data from this season looked like…

Data Analysis

This was an exciting year, as upping the buy-in had the effect I hoped it would, and it was a much more profitable year than I’ve ever had in the past. It’s always a bit scary doing that, but clearly I hadn’t needed to be as nervous in the past and perhaps it’s time to do it yet again next year. We’ll see!

Now, for how often I cashed per site, please keep in mind that, just because I cashed doesn’t necessarily mean I profited; I just keep track because, as we say time and time again in this game, yes, walking away with something can help salvage your bankroll, which is important… but it also helps with your confidence, which helps eliminate (or at least limit) the second-guessing that often rears its ugly head during cold streaks.

Site Days Attempted Days Cashed Cash Percentage
FanDuel 63 30 48%
DraftKings 169 77 46%
Yahoo 169 95 56%

I’m cool with those percentages. I would be silly to sit here and say I didn’t benefit on Yahoo from not yet achieving veteran status, as there was often plentiful overlay in the later slates, even so much so that a few GPPs were essentially 50/50’s with higher payouts. I don’t know if those stats are continuous or start over next year but, if they don’t, I’m definitely going to have to up my game because I don’t think I’ll be cashing at that nightly rate going against all you DFS pros every night!

Season-Long Reflection


I’ve mentioned this before, but I’m honestly really disappointed that FD, in my opinion, took the fun out of their product this year. In fact, it was so bad that, had I not had a large NFL cash before the season even started, I’m not sure I would have played even as much as I did. As it is, I went from being not only a daily player, but playing anywhere from $2 to $5 each day for the last handful of seasons, to a player that played a total of $63 this season. To put that into perspective, I played over 10x that on DK and Yahoo, which had never been full-time sites for me before. It makes me wonder; if me, a small stakes player, capped his play that significantly, did others, too? Or, perhaps FD does know what they’re doing and I’m in the minority, and people like the new game. I guess time will tell… if next season rolls around and they go back to the original format, we’ll know that it wasn’t quite as successful as they thought it would be. Fingers crossed, as I would love to be able to go back to full-time FD again in the future!


Whereas FD was pretty disappointing, DK was great. Sure, the play was fun and I had a lot of success financially, but the Tiered Rewards were fun, too. Not only that, but being able to double-dip with the Loyalty Programs really not only encouraged me to play basically every day (that 25k crown reward for NBA was pretty motivating!), but logging in daily and getting something, even if it was small, added in a lot of fun. To bring the whole thing into perspective as a small-stakes player, I usually start with about 10x my daily bankroll for an entire season, so it costs me about $40 to play an entire NBA season, and reaching the Diamond status not only gives me a ton of crowns to fund my play, but the daily rewards alone will fund not only my NBA play for all of next season, but my NFL as well. Now, that’s loyalty to the little guy! If I’m going to be completely honest, I’d be shocked if these rewards don’t go down a little bit next season, but, for now, they’re really awesome.


Yahoo was a ton of fun, and I should have put more time in than this long-ago. Sure, the tourneys were small and the payouts aren’t very big, but it kind of reminds me of Daily Joust back in the day and Fantasy Feud after that, with smaller tourneys where you can really get into a nice rhythm. If you never played there, it definitely has a bit of a learning curve due to the salary format, but, once you figure that out, it’s really fun. Basically, it’s FD scoring (without the stupid drop the lowest score part) with positional flexibility and late swap. They also implemented a “projected” score as well as payout this season, adding another level of fun to the picture. What’s not to like?

Personal Life:

For the first time ever, I made it an entire season without DFS getting in the way of my personal life. I’ve mentioned this a handful of times, but when your sig other asks is if you’re even playing quite a few times throughout a season, you’re either the bathroom master and your sig other is oblivious, or you’re finding ways to play at unobtrusive times and it’s not getting in the way of home life. I’m proud to say that we had zero DFS arguments this entire season, and, when she saw how much I gained during the season, she asked if I am going to up the bankroll next year. Go figure.

What’s Next?

… I have no idea. This challenge has been going for seven years, and has changed quite a bit, from $1 play on one site to 5x that on multiple. It’s also seen me get married, as well as have not one, but two boys (my wife wants another kid so she can get her daughter, of course). It’s also seen me get a dog, two cats, build a home, and move into that home. So it’s hard to just walk away from something that’s been part of my life for so long. But there’s also the part where there isn’t a whole lot left to do… so that’s where I’m open to suggestions! I can’t make any promises, but would love to hear what you guys think: What do you think I should do for a challenge next year? Please let me know in the comments and we’ll see what happens!

Lastly, for those of you who have followed along all season long, thank you! And for those of you who have not only followed along this season but for multiple seasons (or even all), thank you even more. I’ve always told people that RG is a heck of a community, and you guys have made this a ton of fun from day one… and hopefully you’ve been able to get something out of my trials and tribulations, even if it was just a chuckle at some of my ugliest lineups. Sorry for those of you who have been around the whole time and were waiting for that first-place finish that continues to elude me; One would think it would have happened by now, since we’re probably about 2500 entries into them at this point! I’ve had a decent amount of top-ten finishes, but that elusive first-place finish still manages to stay just out of reach, which is unfathomably annoying on those nights where everything seemingly falls perfectly into place. However, the overall journey has been a blast, and I wish you best of luck until next NFL season when I’ll come out my hibernation and return to make some donations to the cause, as NFL is definitely not my forte!

Until then, thank you for reading, and best of luck trying to balance your life and DFS!

About the Author

  • Jim Hill (jimfred82)

  • Jim Hill, aka jimfred82, is a happily married father and teacher who has been playing fantasy sports since 2001. He began his DFS career in the pioneer days when $5 was the minimum contest entry and nobody had even heard of 50/50’s. He mainly plays low-dollar NFL and NBA, and has been blogging for RotoGrinders since 2011, publishing hundreds of blogs with a variety of content ranging from NFL, NBA, bankroll challenges, and his lifelong disdain for Kendrick Perkins.


  • zpruitt3

    Congrats on the great season! Those cash percentages are very impressive. Good to hear you have been able to balance your dfs hobby with real life stuff. Have been reading your blogs for years now.

  • jimfred82

    • Blogger of the Month

    @zpruitt3 said...

    Congrats on the great season! Those cash percentages are very impressive. Good to hear you have been able to balance your dfs hobby with real life stuff. Have been reading your blogs for years now.

    Thanks, zpruitt! Appreciate the constant support!

  • joeycis

    • Blogger of the Month

    Really fun read all year long — but this one was great. Glad to see that you were able to balance everything so well while still putting together good stuff.

    Look forward to you coming back next season.

  • jimfred82

    • Blogger of the Month

    @joeycis said...

    Really fun read all year long — but this one was great. Glad to see that you were able to balance everything so well while still putting together good stuff.

    Look forward to you coming back next season.

    Thanks, Joey! Not sure what next season will entail, but hopefully I can think of something!

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