The Gut Check for March 12, 2020: Pandemic Edition

Hope everyone believes that Adam Silver is doing a better job at crisis management than the POTUS, this is the Gut Check. My name is Shawn Cripps and I’m a Chartered Professional Accountant (CPA) by day and a DFS player by night. I’ve been playing DFS for the past 5-6 years, mostly on FanDuel, but I’ve started to dabble a bit with DraftKings. I’ve played mostly NFL, NBA and MLB but have tried other sports like XFL, WNBA, PGA and MMA. I’m not a high stakes player by any means, just really doing this for the fun of it (at most, probably $50-$200 a night with most of my action in GPPs). I’ve won a few GPPs with my approach over the years and hopefully you can take something away from what I write! I find that this blog is a great way to start your day. Now let’s get started!

I’ve mostly been a single entry style of player over the years but have now dabbled into multi-entering 20-max contests like the $2.22 Pick ‘N Roll and the $1 And-One among other GPPs. Overall, I’ve been pretty consistent. Not winning anything big by any stretch (and not losing a lot either) but if you decide to take the multi-entry plunge, I highly recommend using any lineup builder and building your own projections into your process. Staying on top of news is also very important and vital to your success in DFS. I use RotoGrinders and Twitter notifications on my phone to keep me up-to-date throughout the day, a highly recommended part of my process. For NBA, you have to be able to adapt to breaking news in a quick fashion and lineup optimizers certainly help in that regard.

The blog will be used to look back at the previous slate, my player exposures, and where I and/or the public went right or wrong. It goes without saying that news comes fast and furious throughout the day and can change pretty much everything in a given slate. If you enjoy the blog, feel free to drop a comment or a like. For past blog posts, feel free to look at my profile under my username srcripps.

Yesterday’s Results

Yesterday started out just like any other day. I wrote my blog, entered some dummy lineups and did some research throughout the day to prepare me for the evening action. I pretty much stay glued to my phone throughout the evening. The notification that the Jazz/Thunder game was delayed and then postponed hit everyone like a ton of bricks. Then the official statement from the NBA about 20 minutes later that the rest of the season has been postponed until further notice. Things started to feel real that now this pandemic is actually here. I live on the east coast of Canada in the small province of New Brunswick, where we are still in the dead of winter with snow up to our knees. Up until now, we’ve been pretty much immune to the Coronavirus. Last night, we’ve received word that our province has got its first case of the Coronavirus. In fact, we now have 3 cases as of this morning, and it’s just going to get worse from here. But this pandemic will pass and we will get back to a level of normalcy hopefully over the next couple of weeks or months. I urge you all to follow the proper precautions (wash your hands, cough in your sleeve, stay home if you feel sick, etc.) and we’ll all get through this. I applaud Adam Silver and his executive team that made the right decision for the players, the referees, the team staff personnel and their fans by putting the public interest first and foremost. Hopefully the POTUS will step up to the plate and show that level of leadership in the coming days for the American people.

To recap last night, I put in my 20 lineups in the $2.22 Pick ‘N Roll and the 100-man contests (top 12 pay out) on FanDuel and I also maxed the 20-max $1 And-One and the $4 Four Point Play on DraftKings. Total fees paid across both sites was $184.40 ($84.40 on FD and $100.00 on DK). I won $80.50 total for a loss of $103.90 (-43.66% ROI) ($56.00 won on FD and $24.50 won on DK). UPDATE AS OF 11:46 am EST: FanDuel refunded me what I lost last night, so an extra $28.40 back in my FD account. UPDATE AS OF 2:29 pm EST: DraftKings refunded me what I lost last night, so an extra $75.50 back in my DK account.

Again my strategy has been to do just 20 lineups max (even for a 25-max tournament like the Pick ‘N Roll) and enter it in some low-level stakes trying just to consistently cash (nothing big, nothing flashy, not trying to hit the big payday). And for those who are wondering, I do use a lineup optimizer for my lineup builds. I just find it easier to do my 20 lineups this way and gives me time to analyze what it’s spitting out. I highly recommend it if you’re entering multi-entry tournaments (anything to save me time is well worth the price). I’ve been more successful on FanDuel with this strategy (certainly not last night however) than I have been with DraftKings but I can tell you that right now combined, my account balances are a little under $700 after just two and a half months of daily play (minus the $3K withdrawal I made last month). If you’ve been a regular reader of the blog since the month of January, I have had some good nights that have offset more of the bad ones. I’m not here to tell you that it’s a perfect strategy but I can tell you that it’s working for me right now.

Here’s a look at my top 5 player exposures from last night’s main slates:

For FD:

Elfrid Payton (85%)
Bam Adebayo (80%)
Will Barton (60%)
Kevin Huerter (50%)
Donovan Mitchell (45%)
30 players in my player pool for a 6-game slate

For DK:

Tony Bradley (95%)
Goran Dragic (75%)
Danilo Gallinari (60%)
Julius Randle (50%)
Thon Maker, Donovan Mitchell, Trae Young & Luka Doncic (50%)
27 players in my player pool for a 6-game slate

My best lineup on FD in the $2.22 Pick ‘N Roll was 1,392nd out of 26,812 entries (ended up winning $6.00, cashing 8 of my 20 lineups overall)

PG Trae Young 54.9 (38.6% owned)
PG Elfrid Payton 45.0 (17.5% owned)
SG Kevin Huerter 26.9 (17.4% owned)
SG RJ Barrett 45.0 (26.0% owned)
SF Danilo Gallinari 0.000000000000000 (9.8% owned)
SF Will Barton 40.7 (29.8% owned)
PF Bam Adebayo 41.4 (50.8% owned)
PF Maxi Kleber 20.3 (34.0% owned)
C Joel Embiid 50.3 (16.6% owned)

Total 324.5 (Winning Lineup was 411.9, cash line was 272.1)

My best lineup on DK in the $4 Four Point Play was for 3,776th out of 22,294 entries (ended up winning $8.00, cashing only 2 of my 20 lineups overall)

PG Luka Doncic 53.0 (48.7% owned)
SG Cody Martin 22.0 (15.4% owned)
SF Danilo Gallinari 0.0000000000000 (21.9% owned)
PF Christian Wood 53.75 (13.0% owned)
C P.J. Washington 33.75 (8.3% owned)
G De’Aaron Fox 0.000000000000000 (20.4% owned)
F Maxi Kleber 22.5 (41.0% owned)
UTIL Boban Marjanovic 57.75 (14.0% owned)

Total 242.75 (Winning Lineup was 362.25, cash line was 235)

A couple of notes to take away from last night: .Obviously this turned into a 4-game slate so for those that avoided the two cancelled games, congratulations! I would hope that FanDuel and DraftKings would do the right thing and refund last night’s entry fees but I’m not holding my breath on that. It was nice to see the Boban released on the Nuggets last night. I just wish I was able to pivot away from my Tony Bradley exposure. Boban was the logical pivot as Bradley was 35.2% owned compared to Boban’s 14% ownership.

Today’s Slate

Hopefully the NBA season will be able to resume and at least get the playoffs in. It’s always an exciting time of year with the NBA and NHL playoffs, along with the start of the MLB season. Until then everyone, I’ve got a couple of lineups going with the PGA Players Championship this weekend, so hopefully I’ll have a Sunday sweat to look forward to. Stay safe, and we’ll get back to our normal lives soon enough!
Feel free to leave a like/comment/question if you like the blog. Best of luck Grinders. Let’s win that DFS money!!!!

About the Author


  • niko521TampaBay

    Does a person have a gambling problem if they play dfs NHL tonight? what if they’ve never played NHL before except the NBA all star break? LOL im kidding everyone, enjoy your NHL, ill wait for XFL Weekend. and thank you fan duel for letting me keep my winnings, as a had an ATL/NYK heavy lineup that propelled me to profit 65 smackolas, or, as we say in Florida, 4oz of Purell.

  • srcripps

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    @niko521TampaBay said...

    Does a person have a gambling problem if they play dfs NHL tonight? what if they’ve never played NHL before except the NBA all star break? LOL im kidding everyone, enjoy your NHL, ill wait for XFL Weekend. and thank you fan duel for letting me keep my winnings, as a had an ATL/NYK heavy lineup that propelled me to profit 65 smackolas, or, as we say in Florida, 4oz of Purell.

    They’ve suspended the NHL until further notice as well. For now the only thing going is the PGA Players Championship but I would suspect that the XFL is next to suspend play.

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