Despite the stoppage of most North American sports from the coronavirus pandemic, DraftKings has done arguably the best among major gaming companies. They have expanded operations to new states, rolled out new content from Freeplay pools to NJ online casino games, and even successfully launched their IPO.
And now introducing… the DraftKings MMA Million!
In the first major live sports event since going public, DraftKings has a big offer for fans. For UFC 249 this Saturday from Jacksonville, the pioneers of daily fantasy are offering a million-dollar prize pool, their biggest on a single MMA card.
DraftKings MMA Million – UFC 249 Contest
- $20 is the entry fee for the contest.
So those who have been waiting for “legitimate competition” or have been doing well in the freeroll events might want to get involved.
- Top prize among the 58,823 entrants is $200,000
New players can get involved too.
The standard $3 freeroll ticket with an initial deposit has been replaced with the $20 ticket for this special contest.
Greg Ehrenberg is DraftKings’ MMA DFS analyst.
On Thursday, he noted the DFS field is busy, despite the lack of traditional events. While many wonder if there should be a PPV in Florida during the lockdown, he believes the fans are ready to get involved.
“A lot of people are playing stuff like Korean baseball, which takes place overnight here,” he said. “As long as the event happens, there’s going to be a DFS contest.”
He expects the competition to sell out.
After a couple days of KBO, does anybody else feel like they are fluent in Korean?
— Greg Ehrenberg (@gehrenbergdfs) May 6, 2020
UFC 249 is going on despite major concerns about travel and safety from the shutdowns.
The evening will go on without lightweight champion Khabib Nuragomedov, who was slated to defend his belt against Tony Ferguson. Instead, Justin Gaethje will enter the main event for the title.
DraftKings DFS Contest – How To Play
For those who have done DFS for other sports but not combat, it’s a bit different.
- Pick six of the 24 fighters on the card for Saturday’s event with a $50,000 salary cap.
- Fighters earn points for strikes, takedowns, advances, and other moves in the match.
- However, there are more points available for quicker finishes so it’s key to weigh those objectives before selecting a lineup.
Ehrenberg recommended players who aren’t familiar with MMA DFS should first check the odds on DK’s sportsbook. Usually, the DFS prices match up with the betting lines. Players should look at who might get an early finish.
“A lot of times you’ll find value in terms of where a fighter has a better chance of winning, in terms of the odds they had earlier in the week,” Ehrenberg said. “Odds can swing during the week and sometimes the underdog in a bout when odds are released can become the favorite by the time the fighters enter the octagon.”
Even with the man who scared away Connor McGregor off the card, there are some recognizable names on Saturday’s lineup. Bantamweight champ Henry Cejudo will defend his title against Dominic Cruz. Former NFL standout Greg Hardy will open the PPV slate at heavyweight, while fan-favorite, Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone headlines the prelims.
When asked for a “sleeper pick,” Ehrenberg picked Yorgan De Castro, Hardy’s opponent at heavyweight. Hardy is still green in MMA despite his 5-2 record.
Castro isn’t giving up much weight but is 5 inches shorter. He could possibly get in on the former defensive end and control the match at short-range.
- As an underdog, this could be the most noteworthy upset of the night.
- Ehrenberg thinks De Castro could win by KO to move his UFC record to 7-0.
— DK Live (@dklive) May 6, 2020