Arizona DFS Player Hits Big With DraftKings’ Fantasy Sports

Those familiar with Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS) know the rush the one-day contests can provide sports fans who are seeking a little more excitement during an NFL game. That extra dose of exhilaration became available to Arizona residents in September 2021 when FanDuel and DraftKings, the two titans in the DFS industry, launched in Arizona.

One of those Arizona sports fans is Dave (last name withheld), who experienced first-hand the level of excitement one can experience when chasing the pot of gold at the end of regulation.

Dave was one of the winners who split DraftKings’ $1.275 million first-place prize pool for last week’s single-game contest for the Thursday Night Football matchup between the Arizona Cardinals vs. Green Bay Packers.

DraftKings and FanDuel not only offer contests that span a full night — or “slate” — of action, but they also offer contests for standalone games — i.e. Thursday, Sunday, and Monday Night Football.

DraftKings’ Showdown Captain Mode Contests

In DraftKings’ “Showdown Captain Mode” contests, fantasy gamers will choose a “Captain” — this player costs 1.5x his base salary, but scores 1.5x the fantasy points — in addition to filling out five “Flex” spots among skill position players, kickers, and defenses. The lineup has to come in under the $50,000 salary cap. Then, just like in traditional fantasy football, the players in the lineup accumulate points based on their in-game performance. Different contests pay out different percentages of a contest depending on a number of different factors.

To pull off what Dave accomplished is no small feat. He finished at the top of the ranks in a contest with a robust 134,000 entrants. If there’s any regret, it’s that he had to share the spoils with 46 other winners.

“I would have liked to have gotten that $1.275 million to myself,” Dave told Arizona Casinos, who is certainly happier about his payday than it may seem. After all, who can blame someone for wondering what could have been when $1.275 million turns into 1/46th of that?

Dave has played season-long fantasy football for about 10 years now but has enjoyed the extra action that DFS and NFL betting provides.

“I’ll continue to play the single-game contests through the end of the year,” says Dave, who also mentioned how his gambling habits have changed since Arizona launched DFS and mobile sports betting.

“I used to bet over/unders and spreads. In addition to DFS, I’m also now betting more anytime TD parlays which I love!” 

DFS And Sports Betting In Arizona

Arizona is among the latest in the wave of states legalizing sports gambling and/or DFS. There’s certainly a long and rapidly expanding list of gamers who are enjoying the additional ways to add some investment to their sports viewing.

With individual sports leagues and professional teams becoming increasingly aligned with the big players in the betting industry, one can only expect to see more states join the ranks of those allowing their residents to wager on sports and participate in DFS contests.

And with more states in on the action, more fans like Dave will have the opportunity to add an extra dose of excitement to their sports viewing experience — and perhaps even win big. 

About the Author

Craig Williams

Craig Williams is a Charlotte-based sportswriter who has worked professionally in the gaming, fantasy, and sports business industries. He’s an avid fantasy football player, managing over 100 leagues across multiple formats. When he’s not pouring over Vegas odds and statistics, he’s indulging in soccer and enjoys anything from LigaMX to Champions League.