How a new player built a five-figure bankroll in months: Tips for players that are just starting out
I wanted to share some of my experiences and knowledge to give back to the RG Community. RG has been so helpful to me since I started playing DFS. Just a quick summary of my DFS history. I deposited on FanDuel a year ago and quickly lost my deposit so I quit playing, thinking that the game was unbeatable due to all the experts/pros and the house rake. A year later, I decided to give it another try and started playing again. This time, I utilized the RG analysis, forums, articles, and other blog posts to help me learn how to win at DFS. I play primarily on DraftKings, so most of my advice will be pertinent to that site.
In a matter of playing for only two months (started in late August 2015), I now have a five-figure bankroll (and withdrew my initial deposit so my bankroll is only profit). I pretty much only play 50/50s and Double Ups, so my bankroll is not due to a nice GPP score. I understand that variance may have been in my favor, but I am approaching close to $100k in contest entry fees paid over the last couple months so I am hoping my ROI is indicative of my level of play.
DEPOSIT/GETTING STARTED: If it is within your means, it is best to deposit the amount that allows you to gain the maximum initial deposit bonus since that is the only bonus the site will ever give you (FanDuel, DraftKings). Some other sites have periodic redeposit bonuses, but I am not aware of a redeposit bonus for these two sites. I would recommend depositing at FanDuel and DraftKings since there is more traffic there and a larger selection of games. Make sure to use the RotoGrinders referral link so that you are eligible for the free year of Incentives. However, if you are going to be a huge high volume player, then please use my referral code ;)
FanDuel: $200 deposit for a $200 bonus
DraftKings: $600 deposit for a $600 bonus
GAME SELECTION: When building a bankroll, it is important to play mainly cash games as it gives you the highest chance of increasing your bankroll everyday or every week. I didn’t play many GPPs in the beginning (and still don’t), but I would recommend devoting at least 95% of your volume to cash games (50/50s and Double ups) to try to slowly increase your bankroll.
Start at the smallest stakes. Play the $1, $2, $3 level 50/50s and Double ups. It is better to play 25 games at $1 than 1 game at $25. Sure, it is easier to follow your team’s progress with only one contest, but the level of play is definitely easier at the smaller stakes. You will still have some pros scooping games at that level, but that is just part of the game. If possible, play in larger field single entry games. The 50 team contests will have a smaller proportion of pros when compared to the 10 team contests because the same 5 pros that are scooping up all the games will only be 10% of the entrants in the 50 team, but half of the entrants in the 10 team.
Do not play in the multi-entry contests. You will see that the pros will max entry these contests and you end up having more than half of the entries be from the pros.
Beginner Leagues are very nice to have, and almost every sport on DraftKings has the Beginner Leagues. This is a great way to start out as it allows you to play 50 contests in that sport before barring you from playing anymore. Hopefully you can win a large proportion of the Beginner contests and it gives you a nice boost before having to play against some pros at the small stakes.
BANKROLL MANAGEMENT: I will admit that I do not always adhere to this, but I still want to make sure players understand how important this is. I feel like a smoker telling other people not to smoke, but I have good intentions here :)
It is recommended that you play only 7-10% of your bankroll on any given slate. So if you start out with $600 on DraftKings, you should only enter contests for $42 – $60 on the first day. Depending on your balance after day 1, you can play 7-10% of the ending balance on day 1 for day 2. If you are able to redeposit if you go busto, then you can be more aggressive than this guideline.
RESEARCH/LINEUP BUILDING: If you were able to get the Incentives, make sure to read everything that is posted for the day. The RG Analysts are very knowledgeable, so it is always helpful to read their thoughts when constructing your lineups. I normally like to just make one lineup per slate, and use the same lineup in all of my cash games. If you want to reduce variance, you could make two lineups and split your cash games with the two lineups.
If there is interest in a Part II, I can go over more advanced concepts and strategy on game selection and bankroll building.