Unless you’ve been living under a rock, chances are, you’ve heard of all the hype around fantasy sports. These are games where you draft a team of real-life athletes at the start of every season. Your points depend on the performance of said real-life athletes, and the team with the most points wins.
While this game may seem simple, it has launched several successful shows. The recent article on Madness To Creation on “All AXS Fantasy Football” comes to mind, which gave players that extra edge to pull off a win.
And while some of these tactics may prove useful, players from another game seem to be dominating the fantasy sports landscape. Poker players, in particular, have an affinity for fantasy sports. Today, we’ll be exploring that link to see what players can take away from poker to better manage their fantasy sports teams.
Poker Players Making It Big in Fantasy Sports
Assani Fisher managed to win $162,592 throughout his 13-year stint as a professional poker player. Today, he ranks as one of the world’s best fantasy sports players. CNBC reports that he won $800,000 in 2015 between February to September alone, which is around eight times more than his total professional poker earning. It’s safe to say that Fisher has found the right game for him.
Cory Albertson, unlike Fisher, is still an active professional poker player. He made $298,729 in winnings this year and a total of $728,513 throughout his entire career. He also completed his MBA in Finance from the University of Notre Dame, so it’s safe to say the guy knows his numbers. While it’s hard to nail down his total fantasy sports winnings, Albertson revealed in an interview with BroBible that he’s made upwards of $1.5 million in a single day through fantasy sports.
POKER SKILLS AND FANTASY SPORTS
Surely, there must be a link between poker and fantasy sports for these former professionals to continue to win big. To determine this connection, let’s take a look at the skills you need to be good at poker. The long-form guide to Texas Hold’em by partypoker details some of the crucial rules that both beginners and pros need to know to be successful at the game. They also need to stay calm, alert, and patient. We elaborate on these skills below, as these are similar to the kind of skills you need to excel in fantasy sports.
KEEPING CALM AND AVOIDING THE TILT
Imagine this scenario: Dak Prescott quarterback for the Dallas Cowboys, had a bad game against the New Orleans Saints back in week four. What do you do about this? Do you panic and swap him out for someone else? This would be unwise, and is a sign that you’re falling victim to what’s called the tilt in poker. It’s when negative outcomes affect your rational decision-making. Keeping calm and always playing rationally is a skill honed in poker, one that would do you some good in fantasy sports as well.
STAY PATIENT AND PLAY THE LONG GAME
In poker, aggressively betting could scare off some of the other players, making for fewer winnings on your end. In fantasy sports, patience and playing the long game affect the drafting process. Let’s use the NBA as an example. Devin Booker, a point guard for the Phoenix Suns, had an average draft projection of 27th. This means he, on average, was being picked as the 27th player off the board in the draft. Some people would be tempted to take him earlier. Hold off on doing this. Play the long game and try to get players right at their valued position, as holding off could even land you a player much later than you thought you could have gotten them.