“This Week In Daily” is LegalSportsReport’s weekly wrap of key facts, happenings and miscellany from the daily fantasy sports industry.
Stories of note
ESPN Deal for DraftKings, NBA deals for FanDuel
It was a busy week for the Big Two.
DraftKings announced an exclusive deal to partner with ESPN — basically keeping FanDuel off the Worldwide Leader in Sports. That agreement came with a caveat, however. Remember that $250 million investment ESPN’s parent company, Disney, reportedly agreed to? That’s not happening anymore. And, according to one source, neither is a potential $150mm deal with Fox. Get the lowdown on DraftKings’ week.
Meanwhile, FanDuel was busy locking up new or extensions of deals with 13 NBA teams. They continue to try to nail down their biggest markets — the NFL and the NBA, with which they have an over-arching partnership.
And we don’t expect things to calm down now in the arms race between the two, not with NFL season about 2 1/2 months away.
New numbers of fantasy participation at FSTA
Everyone in the industry got together this year in New York City, for what was the largest FSTA conference ever held — even outpacing the winter conference in Las Vegas.
The conference is a lot of networking, but the panels are also of great interest to most in the industry. The research study from the FSTA was the highlight for many, as it continues to show an upward trend for daily fantasy sports across a variety of metrics. And there are just more fantasy players in general, and those players are spending more. We’ll dive deeper into the numbers of the research next week, but you can check out some of the highlights at the FSTA website.
Also of note: SidePrize, which we featured last week, had a pretty good week. It won both the Elevator Pitch — a competition in which start-up fantasy products had three minutes to pitch their product — and the Shark Tank — where three startups make their pitch to a panel of venture capitalists.
Of the week
Reads of the week
This is a fascinating take on the possible problems that the DFS industry could encounter that would mirror those experienced by the online poker industry.
As currently constructed, Jeff Hwang (from the poker space) believes that the skill gap between pros and casual players will manifest itself into problems for the industry’s economy, resulting in player attrition.
Agree or disagree, you should read this story about issues that could affect the DFS ecosystem sooner rather than later.
On Sunday, DraftKings gave away a million dollars to the winner of a contest based on the U.S. Open. ESPN’s David Purdum caught up with the two men involved in the sweat for million-dollar first prize.
Tweet of the week
— Alexandre Dreyfus (@alex_dreyfus) June 26, 2015
Number of the week
The precentage of fantasy players (season-long and daily) who are women, based on the recently released results of an FSTA study. That’s up from 20 percent from last year.