Sunday, February 12, 2012

Stacking Is Directly Related to The Scoring Table

This is something I thought about on the plane ride back from Vegas.

The stacking strategy in daily fantasy sports is mostly successful in hockey and baseball, while unsuccessful in football and basketball. Why?

Simply put, it's the way the contests are scored.

In NFL or NBA, players can contribute mightily in a losing effort. Kobe gonna get his on most nights. MJD or Rob Bironas could win you big bucks, even if their team was blown out 44-18.

In the other sports, the scoring tables discourage parity, thus encouraging stacking.

If your NHL player is on the bad end of a 5-0 shutout, his only potential for scoring positive fantasy points are shots on goal & penalty minutes.

At Fan Duel, it takes 10 SOG to equal the fantasy points for scoring a even strength goal. That doesn't happen very often.

Also, scoring for PIMs was cut 50% on Fan Duel. This is a double whammy because fighting and misconducts are down over 25% this season.

Even if your players racked up those stats, his +/- in the loss probably negated any gains.

Over in MLB, a similar scenario occurs. If your hitter is facing a 9-0 deficit, his team is less likely to play small ball (sacrifice and steal bases). It's more likely subs will play meaningful innings at that point.

I will say that stacking suits baseball the best because there is the highest chance of lopsided games. That's just based on probability, as they have the highest volume regular season.

If fantasy sites want to remove stacking from the game, they need to develop scoring formulas with more depth. BB by a pitcher is poor defense, but it's not scored some places. Errors aren't scored on any of the major sites. Strikeouts are unproductive outs for hitters, so are GIDP.

In hockey, you could easily add hits, blocked shots and faceoffs won to the table. Also shootout goals would be a fun touch.

The sites have a balancing act between making the games easy to play for newbies and keeping their top rake generators happy. However, the more they make their big money contests like a lotto ticket, the less likely I'll be playing.

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