As gradually more states legalize online gambling, big names in the industry are expanding throughout the US. DraftKings Sportsbook is one such site that is famously known for its daily fantasy sport (DFS) contests. Alongside DFS, the company also hosts a range of online sports betting all, conveniently, on the one platform. After DraftKing’s recent collaboration with SBTech, the new partnership is the only company to offer US-based vertically-integrated sports betting and online gaming.
For players wanting to just play fantasy contests, the site is available for US customers in all but a handful of states and residents in the UK, Malta, Germany, Ireland, and Austria. DraftKings Sportsbook is, however, available currently in six states: New Jersey, Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Indiana, New Hampshire, and Iowa. On 1st May 2020, DraftKings Sportsbook launched in Colorado. As online gambling is legalized in more states, DraftKings Sportsbook will no doubt see further expansion.
Here is a guide on how to navigate and use the DraftKings Sportsbook app and website which are sure to eventually be available throughout the states.
DraftKings New Player Bonuses and Promotions
Like most online gambling sites, DraftKings Sportsbook offers new players bonus offers when opening a new account. The only difference with this site is that instead of offering players one welcome bonus, players are entitled to multiple bonuses:
Free entry into a $3 contest
Players must claim their free $3 within seven days of activating their account and need to place the wager on an event with odds of -200 or greater.
20% deposit match bonus up to $500
Players are entitled to this bonus if they deposit at least $5 into their DraftKings account. Whatever the deposit value, DraftKings will match it by 20% for values up to $500 bonus. One thing to note is the bonus money is released incrementally into the player’s account as more real money contests are entered. For every $25 spent on bets, $1 of bonus money is made available.
$500 risk-free bet
After placing the initial bet, DraftKings will match the player’s first wager with account credit. For example, if $100 was placed as a first wager, the site would give the player a free $100 bet.
DraftKings Navigation and Interface
Though available on both desktop and mobile devices, DraftKings is mainly focused on the mobile app. If the DraftKings website is visited on a mobile device, users will be automatically prompted to download the app. If your mobile is an iOS device, the app can also be downloaded from the app store. Unfortunately, the DraftKings app is not currently downloadable from Google Play and so users of Android devices will have to go to the website and download it directly. The app is recommended for players who are likely going to be gambling on the go and gives them more convenient access to in-play bets and live game information.
The app is well-designed and simple to navigate around. The home page displays current promotions and popular bets, while the navigation bar allows players to easily find and visit specific pages. The menu options are:
- In-Game: Allows players to view all live betting options.
- My Bets: Shows the users their bet slip.
- A-Z Sports: Gives a comprehensive list of available sports which varies from state to state.
- Promos: Lists all available promotions for players.
The website is similarly clean and easy to use. There are several key areas of the site which means players can quickly and easily navigate to the pages needed, rather than being overloaded with a homepage full of information, which is a fault of many online sportsbook websites. These sections are:
- Account Options: A place players can create or login to an existing account, and manage their account setting and payments.
- Top Level Options: Allows the players to choose whether they want to access the DFS or sports betting pages of the sites and toggle between the two. From here there is easy access to multiple other site areas such as past and current wagers, promotions, live betting, and help.
- Sports Option: This gives players a full list of the sports available and varies state by state. Users can select the desired sports and type of bets.
- Bet Slip: Users bet slips are displayed on the right of the website and are divided into singles, parlays, and round robins. After selecting a bet from the main page it will appear on the bet slip. To edit the bet slip, any unwanted wagers can be removed with a simple click. Once content with the slip, players click the “place bet” button.
- Help: At the footer of every page on the website there are links to useful FAQs and contact information if the desired information cannot be found elsewhere.
Whether using the website on a desktop or the DraftKings app on a mobile device, players have convenient and easy access to all their account information, bets, promotions, deposit and withdrawal options, and help if needed. An allrounder of a website that makes every players’ gambling experience enjoyable and stress-free.
Making a Deposit
There is a range of ways players can deposit money into their DraftKings account, but the site is limited here compared to other online sportsbooks and casinos. However, for most people, the payment options should more than suffice. Deposits can be made by Visa or MasterCard payments, online bank transfers, e-wallets such as Skrill or PayPay, prepaid cards, or wire transfer. Of these, all methods instantaneously credit the money to players’ accounts except from wire transfers which take 1-2 business days. Wire transfers are, however, useful for making larger and more secure deposits.
How Draftkings DFS Works
DraftKings DFS works similarly to any online fantasy sports. Players can build imaginary teams from real-life athletes that compete against other fantasy teams to earn points. The fantasy points earned are based on the player’s performance in real-life sporting events. The main difference between DraftKings and other fantasy leagues is that DraftKings offers players shorter leagues lasting from a single day to a week in length. Thereby, instead of being stuck with one team for the entire season, players can alter their teams every day.
Types of Competitions Offered
The lobby organizes the different contests into groups dependant on type: guaranteed tournaments, qualifiers, head-to-heads, 50/50s, the list goes on. If you are new to fantasy leagues, here is a brief summary of the type of competitions DraftKings offers:
- Beginners Only: These tournaments are for players who have participated in 50 or fewer competitions for each specific sport. For example, a player who has played 100 tournaments but decides to enter their first NFL contest, is able to enter a beginners-only NFL competition.
- Guarantees: These events guarantee a certain prize fund even if the event is not full, which makes these events popular as participants know the amount they are playing for.
- Head-to-head: These contests work in a one vs. one setting. Both players pay the entry fee and the competition runs on a ‘winner takes all’ approach. These are another popular option as instead of competing against an entire field of opponents, only one other player must be beaten to take home the winnings.
- 50/50s: In these tournaments, if players end in the top half of the final game rankings, they receive double the entry fee back. Where you place in the half is irrelevant; the top half takes the winnings and the losing half takes nothing.
- Multipliers: These run on a similar concept to 50/50s. In 3x multipliers, 3x the entry fee is awarded to players in the top third of rankings. In 10x multipliers, 10x the entrance fee is awarded to the top 10% of players. Participants finishing below this win nothing.
- Leagues: These tournaments can range from a few contestants to upwards of 1000 players. How many players receive winnings depends on the size of the tournament.
- Qualifiers: Winning a qualifier will grant players access to bigger tournaments without having to pay staggering entry fees. The $400,000 Sunday contest, for example, charges a $200 entry fee. If a qualifier is won, this will grant access to the big Sunday event without the large entry fee.
- Steps: These are in some ways like mini-qualifiers and winning players progress to the next level. The tournaments, however, have only 6-10 players. Step 1 contests have a $2 entry fee and players progress up through the levels. If players make it to step 4, they take home winnings of $200. You can choose to buy in at any level but the higher the step the bigger the entry fee.
- Tiers: Tiered tournaments categorize athletes by their perceived value, and when building fantasy teams players must select their line-up from different tiers and from at least two different teams.
- Showdowns: These are salary capped contests where players select one captain and five flex spots which can be filled by several different positions.
- NFL Flash Contests: The nearest equivalent to fantasy sports in-play betting. Each tournament starts after the game and game line-ups can be altered every few minutes.
If players prefer, the contests can also be organized by sport, or advanced filters can be applied to only show contests for a specific time, entry fee, or number of players. This allows site users to find their desired fantasy game easily.
DraftKings Major DFS Events
DraftKings hosts major events in each sporting category which hundreds of thousands of players compete in with their fantasy teams. The main major events are for NFL and MLB which often have their own major championships and gain increasing popularity every year. The top prizes for these contests can be upwards of $1 million.
A popular example of a major event is the $10 million NFL Millionaire Maker. This costs participants only $20 to enter yet boasts a staggering $2 million first-place prize. However, competition is high as the games are extremely popular gaining more than 500,000 contestants for most tournaments. This is a weekly competition with qualifiers available for contestants to play throughout the week in an attempt to secure free competition entry. These weekly events are common with nearly all major sports, and so there is a chance for players interested in most events to win big.
DraftKings Sports Betting
Along with the wide range of sporting events, the types of wagers available to players are interesting and varied. Opposed to just offering bets on final game outcomes, DraftKings offers dozens of options including quarterly and half-time results, which player will score first, and final game scores.
Available Sports to Bet On
Although primarily famous for the world’s largest DFS site, DraftKings also offers online sports betting to users in states where online gambling is legalized. The website covers over 60 sports annually dependent on the season and on individual state rules on sports gambling. The coverage is vast and includes the following events:
- Pro Leagues: These are the sports that most players will be betting on and are covered thoroughly. These sports include NFL, NBA, NHL, and MLB.
- Soccer: Many leagues including the English Premiership, Champions League, and European leagues have full coverage.
- Other Sports: DraftKings has good coverage of golf, tennis, and boxing along with MMA and motor racing.
- Niche Events: Rugby games and cricket are available although coverage is not as in-depth as with other sports.
They also offer in-play betting which allows site users to place bets mid-game at odds which are updated real-time. In June 2019, an even more rapid form of in-play betting which DraftKings titled Flash Bet was introduced. This allows players to place short-term wagers as the game progresses, though currently, this is available exclusively for tennis. They hope to roll Flash Bet out for other sports in the coming future.
Another handy feature of DraftKings is the option for players to cash-out early. For example, say the team you have placed a bet on winning is being catastrophically defeated at halftime, you can cut your losses and cash out early. Similarly, if your team is doing well, you can cash-out and claim a reduced pay-out in case a last-minute turn around sees your team lose and your winnings disappear.
Sports Betting Pools
Another feature of DraftKings Sportsbook is their sports betting pools which are a hybrid between classic sports betting and fantasy leagues. Players sign up for a contest, pay for entry, then select an outcome for several games. Those players who have most accurately predicted the game outcomes receive the pay-outs. A recent example is a contest that covered 15 NFL games over one weekend. Players were charged $3 to enter and upon entry prompted to predict the winning team for each of the 15 games. The contest had a $10,000 prize pool which was split out between entrants with the greatest number of correct predictions.
DraftKings Sportsbook Round-up
With an all-round comprehensive site, it is no surprise that DraftKings Sportsbook is rapidly expanding and spreading throughout the states. Although the sports betting is only available in New Jersey, Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Indiana, New Hampshire, and Iowa where online sports betting is legalized, DraftKings is the most popular platform for DFS and is available in all but a handful of states. Compared to its competitor sites, DraftKings offers a wider range of sporting events, a bigger and wider range of DFS contests, and larger prize pools. With these facts along with the generous multiple welcome bonuses, easy deposit and withdrawal options, and simplistic navigation, you cannot go wrong with DraftKings.