FanDuel Strategy for 2017 Arnold Palmer Invitational

FanDuel just released their new PGA product today and it has brought up some mixed reviews across the industry. We happen to like the strategy and lineup construction from a game theory perspective. It provides leverage for pricing deficiencies and also an interesting angle on weather if it is in play. So let’s get into the new format.

Lineup Construction

This is the biggest difference from DraftKings. There are 8 spots for players you can draft compared to 6 on DraftKings – 4 golfers for Thursday/Friday and 4 golfers for Saturday/Sunday. This obviously creates an opportunity for cash games and GPPs. For the conservative play you will want to load up on the cut makers for your Saturday/Sunday players. But this creates an edge for GPPs like Rory, Stenson, Day and Matsuyama that will be very low owned in the Thursday/Friday lineups. Now this is something you will have to look at on a week to week basis and take into account things like weather and pricing. If there isn’t the savings and pivot options available to take value players for the weekend, I would not recommend taking the studs on Thursday/Friday.


The scoring opportunities for FanDuel are similar to DraftKings. Players are rewarded for birdies and eagles, but also have the opportunities to “Bounce Back” which means getting a birdie after bogey for .3 additional points to the birdie scoring. Other unique scoring chances include scoring 5 under for the round which equates to 4 points. I will note that double bogeys are penalized more than DraftKings but nothing to worry about. Like I mention earlier the biggest difference is lineup construction.

Players with a discount to DraftKings

This week I am looking to take capitalize on the pricing deficiencies and new players entering contests this week on FanDuel. There are a number of golfers I have identified as mispriced in my model. I am using Fantasy Labs on DraftKings to anchor my model and picks.

  • Rory McIlroy ($10,700) $1,300 Discount – Rory shows alot of similarities to Tiger’s game back in the day. Last year he tallied 6 double bogeys at Bay Hill, definitely something to monitor. He will be chalk on FanDuel but if you take him make sure to be double the field on ownership.
  • Henrik Stenson ($10,200) $1,300 Discount – Henrik lives in Orlando and is very familiar with Bay Hill. He has elite course history and is a steep discount compared to guys like Day and Matsuyama on FanDuel. He showed he is in great form last week at Valspar and should get back to his ball striking ways here at Bay Hill. I am going right back to the well with Henrik.
  • Thomas Pieters ($7,100) $1,600 Discount – Pieters is my favorite play this week on FanDuel. Ever since watching him at the Ryder Cup last year at Hazeltine, I have been bullish on him. He is a scoring machine and sets up well for Bay Hill.
  • Jason Kokrak (5,400) $2,500 Discount – I will be honest in saying I have not been on Kokrak in recent memory. This excercise forced me to look at everyone and the pricing differences with DraftKings. Kokrak is priced in the same range on DraftKings as guys like Ryan Moore, Grillo, Kisner, Na, Finau and Bubba but with the bottom feeders on FanDuel. This had me taking a deeper dive into his course history and recent form. Kokrak has finished 4th, 6th and 20th in his last 3 appearances at Bay Hill. I like his discount on FanDuel at suppressed ownership.
  • Kyle Stanley ($5,400) – $2,000 Discount – I probably sound like a broken record at this point mentioning Stanley again this week. He has good recent form and is a great cornerstone for your Thursday/Friday roster spots at this price.
  • Cameron Smith ($5,700) $1,600 Discount – This is another guy with great recent form with no course history at Bay Hill. His discount once again leads me on him for a Thursday/Friday roster spot.
  • Luke List ($5,800) – $1,400 Discount – This guy is a bomber capable of scoring at a cheap price. I had the opportunity to be Standard Bearer for him at the Honda Classic and when he is locked in he can play with the best of them. Once again another guy for your Thursday/Friday slot.

Others to consider: Jim Herman, Roberto Castro and Billy Hurley


Leave a Reply