Draftkings or FanDuel – Where to play best?
As of now, two big dogs are battling in the daily fantasy sports arena, with every other company competing for third place. DraftKings and FanDuel are the two mega-fantasy sports websites currently ahead of the game, but deciding which site to play can be a difficult choice. Although there is no real way to determine whether DraftKings or FanDuel is better, as it is subjective, you can still educate yourself on the pros and cons of both sites to make an informed decision. Here are some factors to look at when deciding which website to play on.
Draftkings or Fanduel Overview
|Opening bonus / promo code|
|Funding to date (mm)|
|Pro team sponsorships (est)|
|Fantasy lounges at major arenas|
|Amount paid out in 2014 (mm)|
|Major league partnerships|
FanDuel managed to gain $275 million in Series E funding to bring up their cumulative funding to $363 million, with both Google Capital and KKR backing them. This is good news for players of FanDuel, as the site directly puts their funding into developing new products, acquiring new customers, and building an all-star management team.
DraftKings secured $300 million through Series D funding on July 27. A substantial chunk of this funding comes from Fox Sports, who paid close to $150 million into DraftKings, which gives Fox Sports an 11 percent stake in the site. This site is currently in the lead as far as funding goes, with a now total of $426 million. This new funding round will mostly go towards the creation of new products, as well as moving into international space.
The numbers do not lie, DraftKings comes out on top with $63 million more in funding. However, what’s most important is how these companies will use their funding, which has yet to be determined.
FanDuel paid their users over $550 million in prize money in 2014. However, that number is expected to jump to over $2 billion by the end of 2015. There are over 1 million people that use FanDuel’s website, which indicates the potential to win big.
DraftKings is expected to pay out over $1 billion to their participants by the end of 2015. They also have more than 1 million players currently active on the site.
Who Wins: FanDuel
FanDuel is set to hand out over $1 billion more in prizes than DraftKings and so is the clear winner in this category.
Fanduel or Draftkings Promotions
FanDuel currently gives their participants a 100 percent matching bonus for their first deposit up to $200. The bonus will be unlocked from a bonus account at a 4 percent rate for each contest entered. This means that if you pay a fee of $50 to play in a game, you’ll unlock $2 into your account, which you can use to win a greater prize. This deposit bonus will never expire, and will open at the pace that you enter into tournaments. FanDuel does not allow you to withdraw the bonus money. However, you can withdraw the additional money that you earn from the unlocked pool.
FanDuel also hands out reload bonuses. Be aware that these do have an expiration date, and so you must use them before a given date. The site typically will remove a bonus after 45 days of it going unused.
DraftKings has a similar 100 percent matching bonus, except that there’s go up to $600. Besides the matching bonus, DraftKings will give you an extra $3 to enter into your first contest. You can still get your bonus, even if you hold off on depositing money into your account until after you’ve tried out the free games.
Once the bonus has been put into your account, you must use Frequent Player Points to unlock it. For every 100 Frequent Player Points that you earn, $1 of your bonus will be inputted into your account. You can gain these points by playing in money leagues, and the number of points gained depends on the cost of entry. To unlock $1 of your bonus, you must spend $25 of your own money, which ends up being equivalent to FanDuel’s 4 percent rate.
Who Wins: DraftKings
Both sites have the same bonus unlock rate, as well as extremely similar reload bonuses and promotions. The only reason that DraftKings wins the best promotions is because they will give you a larger first-time bonus. However, this is only advantageous if you deposit more than $200 on your first go.
When determining who has the best league options it is important to look at the quality of the leagues you are playing in, as this is the component that will keep you playing. Both DraftKings and FanDuel offer the same sports. They also both offer free gameplay for every league. However, the leagues differ between sites. Both sites offer:
- College Basketball
- College Football
FanDuel offers many of the same league options as DraftKings but is lacking in some league departments. Additionally, you will not find as many options when it comes to the big contests on FanDuel.
As far as league options go, DraftKings offers a much wider range than FanDuel. They offer Soccer leagues, MMA, PGA, and NASCAR, which FanDuel does not. DraftKings differs from FanDuel in that it provides a lower rake for their high stakes games. Additionally, you’ll find more high stakes contests than at FanDuel. This is because DraftKings is set up to handle a larger volume of players.
DraftKings also has an excellent VIP program that can make playing on it worth your while. Those that have a high gameplay volume will gain access to unique opportunities to enter into private contests, access to premium customer service, as well as the chance to see exclusive live footage.
The Winner: DraftKings
Due to DraftKings excellent VIP opportunities, as well as extensive league options, it comes out on top in this department.
FanDuel gives you the chance to play a salary cap format for your football leagues, which draws many people to their website. These salary cap leagues are called weeklong leagues, although the majority of the action occurs on Sundays. There can be as few as two people in these leagues for head-to-head action up to over 100,000 people for massive tournaments. FanDuel’s salary cap is $50,000.
DraftKings also has a salary cap format. However, it allows for a higher salary cap of $60,000. Another advantage of DraftKings is that you can have a flex player. In regards to scoring, DraftKings and FanDuel are very similar with only minor differences. DraftKings also is known to give out more bonus points than FanDuel, as you can gain bonus points for both 100+ yards receiving and 300 yards passing.
The player pricing for DraftKings is based on an algorithm that takes into account matchup, weather, location, past performance, value compared to other players, player popularity, etc.
Who Wins: DraftKings
When it comes to NFL Gameplay, both DraftKings and FanDuel have their advantages. However, many people lean towards DraftKings for their higher salary cap and heavier bonuses.
Fanduel and Draftkings Partnerships
FanDuel is the official partner of the NBA, with special team partnerships with the following teams:
- Utah Jazz
- Orlando Magic
- Milwaukee Bucks
- Miami Heat
- Memphis Grizzlies
- Indiana Pacers
- Detroit Pistons
- Dallas Mavericks
- Cleveland Cavaliers
- Chicago Bulls
- Charlotte Hornets
- Brooklyn Nets
- Atlanta Hawks
FanDuel also has partnerships with 16 NFL teams:
- Chicago Bears
- Houston Texans
- Baltimore Ravens
- St. Louis Rams
- Green Bay Packers
- Detroit Lions
- New York Jets
- Jackson Jaguars
- Philadelphia Eagles
- Indiana Colts
- San Diego Chargers
- Tampa Bay Buccaneers
- Cleveland Browns
- Cincinnati Bengals
- Buffalo Bills
- Washington Redskins
DraftKings has a partnership with the NASCAR, NHL, MLB, UFC, and the MLS. Some of DraftKings special partnerships with the MLB include:
- St. Louis Blues
- Oakland A’s
- Houston Astros
- New York Mets
- Minnesota Twins
- Chicago White Sox
- Pittsburgh Pirates
- Colorado Indians
- Tampa Bay Rays
- Baltimore Orioles
- Texas Rangers
- Detroit Tigers
The NFL has no partnerships with Daily Fantasy Sports Websites. However, DraftKings does have official partnerships with five NFL franchises:
- Denver Broncos
- New England Patriots
- New York Giants
- Dallas Cowboys
- The Pittsburgh Steelers
What Makes DraftKings Standout
DraftKings created beginner games, especially for novice players. These games are only available to those players who’ve played less than 50 games in a particular sport. This beginner gameplay lets you get a handle on each type of sports before entering into the big leagues. For new players, this can give peace of mind, as well as the opportunity to learn while still playing for real money instead of just through free games.
DraftKings lets you late-swap your players. This means that you can alter a player from your lineup right before that player’s game begins. On the other hand, FanDuel locks your roster in once the first game of the slate starts. This can be hugely beneficial for NBA fantasy gameplay as injuries are often announced at the last minute. However, it can also benefit NHL and MLB fantasy players since the lineups and goalies for the west coast games sometimes are not announced before the games on the east coast begin.
One of the best parts of DraftKings is the ability to join the satellite contests. This type of competition allows you to win tickets to major tournaments with typically high buy-ins. However, there are also opportunities to win cheap tickets, such as a $10 ticket for a 25-cent satellite. This is an excellent chance to gain valuable tickets for an affordable price, no matter your bankroll, giving you the potential to play in contests that would usually be too expensive for your buy-in range.
Draftkings is one of the few Daily fantasy sports site that also offer fantasy eSports. So for all gamers, Draftkings for sure is the winner if you ask yourself if you should play on Draftkings or Fanduel.
Why should I play on Fanduel?
FanDuel is designed to cater to casual players. They set up their roster clearly so that every sport is simple to enter. There is no utility or flex, and players can only enter one position. The scoring is extremely straight forward, and so you will not experience any curveballs. However, FanDuel’s simplicity does not take away from the skills needed to be successful in the game or the fun. What it does do is make it easy for new player to enjoy their gameplay and quickly catch up to other players.
It may be confusing that FanDuel’s lock-in is a benefit since DraftKings’ opposite late-swap is a benefit as well. However, since it comes down to personal preference, some may find the lock-in feature to their liking. If you do not want to have to follow the news all night then sticking to FanDuel’s locked-in gameplay can be advantageous. This allows you to pick your roster and then not have to worry about changing it once lock time starts. Another benefit of the locked-in roster is that you can see the ownership percentage of your players right away, as well as your opponent’s roster if you’re playing in a head-to-head game.
Arguably one of the best features of FanDuel is that it allows you to check out your opponents before engaging in gameplay with them. If you click on any participant’s username, you can get a glimpse of their profile page. This shows you exactly when they signed up and the number of wins they made for each type of sport. However, keep in mind that just because a user is new to FanDuel or doesn’t have a high amount of wins, doesn’t mean they are new or bad at Daily Fantasy Sports. They may have just previously been on another site.
Should I Play on DraftKings or FanDuel?
Ultimately, it is your decision as to whether you want to try FanDuel or DraftKings out. If one of the site’s descriptions is calling your name, then begin with that website. However, the best way to truly test which site you like better is to try the free games on both sites and decide which one is your favorite. You can also deposit a small amount of money into each to figure out which suits you best. The good news is that the sign-up process for both sites is extremely easy, as is the deposit process, and so you’ll have no trouble trying both sites out.