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100 Facts You Probably Never Knew About Fantasy Sports


Fantasy sport is a type of game in which participants assemble a virtual team from a pool of real players from a sport such as football or basketball. They are then awarded points based on the performance of those players during the length of the game. The statistical performance of the players in the game is converted into ‘fantasy points’ that determine the outcome. The participant who accumulates the most fantasy points is deemed as the winner.

The user acts a virtual general manager who has complete control of their roster with abilities to draft, trade and drop players as per their choosing. Fantasy sports can be played in the context of a single game or can span the course of an entire season depending on the type of play and the league the user has enrolled in.

The fantasy sports industry, true to its name is quite a fantasy when we look at its history. The way in which it has evolved and grown is surely legendary. Here are a few facts that will put you in a state of awe.

  1. Wilfred Winkenback teamed along with a few friends and created a rule book for fantasy football in 1962. This is the first attempt towards fantasy sports.
  2. The first public Fantasy league was introduced by Andy Mousalimas, the founder of GOPPPL in 1969.
  3. The rotisserie system of scoring for fantasy baseball was developed by a journalist Daniel Okrent in 1980.
  4. The number of people playing fantasy football doubled from half a million in 1988 to 1 million in 1989. It was the first time that the user account had crossed the 1 million mark.
  5. In 1999, when Yahoo was leading the world of the internet, it is set up the first free fantasy football system.
  6. In the same year, the Fantasy Sports Trade Association (FSTA) was formed. It has grown to be the authoritative body when it comes to fantasy sports.
  7. In 2006, the Internet Gambling Prohibition and Enforcement Act of the US showed clarity and differentiated internet gambling and sports betting, giving a legal boost.
  8. In 2009, today’s market leader, Fanduel, got its first round of funding.
  9. The second-largest player after Fandu, Draft kings, was founded in the year 2011.
  10. In 2017, the number of fantasy sports players in the United States and Canada alone was estimated to be at 59.3 million.
  11. 21% of the entire US population are fantasy sports players.
  12. 18% of the fantasy sports players in the United States are adults.
  13. 34% of the fantasy sports players in the US belong to Gen Z.
  14. 19% of the total population of Canada plays fantasy sports.
  15. 19% of the fantasy sports players in Canada are adults.
  16. 21% of Canada’s fantasy sports playing population belongs to Gen Z.
  17. 86% of the DFS market users are from North America.
  18. 5% of the fantasy sports players in the United States and Canada are single.
  19. 66% of the fantasy sports players are male.
  20. 34% of fantasy sports players are female.
  21. 51% of the fantasy sports players have an annual household income of more than 75000 dollars.
  22. 80% of the players who play Fantasy leagues today have said that they plan to do so for the next 10 years.
  23. 44% of the total fantasy sports players have said that they will continue playing fantasy leagues for their lifetime.
  24. The total amount of entry fees is expected to reach $5.3 billion by 2020.
  25. People who play fantasy sports on a daily basis consume 40% more content after becoming regular fantasy sports players.
  26. 50% of the Draft Kings customers have adopted a sport which they were not following before their Association with the Fantasy league.
  27. Fantasy sports players consume more Sports news and watch more live sports than any other category of users.
  28. 64% off of the users have confessed that they watch live sports only because of fantasy leagues.
  29. 61% say that they read more about sports because of fantasy leagues.
  30. Sports betting is legal in 90% of the states in the USA.
  31. 86% of the states in the USA allow daily fantasy sports.
  32. 118 million people bet on sports in the US every year.
  33. 8 million people play fantasy sports from the United States and Canada alone.
  34. The possibility of winning in fantasy sports is marginally lower than sports betting. In sports betting, you will need to bet on $110 with a 52.4% win rate of winning $100. In fantasy leagues, you will need to have a win rate of 55.6% ticket the same winning on the same bet.
  35. In 2013, the Americans spent $160 billion on illegal sports gambling. The amount is 44x the legal gambling spends in Nevada.
  36. There are 10 million registered DFS uses.
  37. 7 million active users play DFS exclusively.
  38. Growing at 55% annually, the DFS market is expected to hit $1.18 billion in 2020.
  39. 10% of DFS players have a weekly spend of $2,000 or more for entry fees.
  40. The spend of the DFS players is expected to skyrocket to $5.3 billion by 2021.
  41. Draftkings is the top DFS website, with more than 50% of the fans using the tool.
  42. Fanduel stands at a close second, with 43% of users opting for it.
  43. There are 4.7 million active users for daily fantasy sport.
  44. There are 59.3 million players for fantasy sports in general.
  45. The value of the daily fantasy sports industry is at $2.6 billion.
  46. The total fantasy sports industry is valued at $3.6 billion.
  47. The entry fee for daily fantasy sport can range anywhere between one cent to $1,000.
  48. Fantasy sports applications are free to download and free to participate.
  49. It takes a very short time to know the winner in daily fantasy sports events.
  50. It takes a considerably long amount of time to know the winner in fantasy sports.
  51. DFS gives you a possibility to win 1 million dollars with an initial stake of $10.
  52. An average DFS player spends $122 every week.
  53. An average fantasy sports player spends $27 every week.
  54. DFS has better affiliate and referral systems compared to fantasy sport.
  55. It is a shock that an injured player can ruin the possibilities of winning in a fantasy sport.
  56. 18 % of the fantasy sports players say that they exclusively play DFS.
  57. 11 % of the fantasy sports players say that they have never played daily fantasy sports.
  58. 70% of the players say that they play both of them.
  59. 28% of the players who do not play DFS are of the opinion that it consumes too much time.
  60. Adult fantasy sports players are 47% more likely to have shocked online than an average US adult.
  61. By sponsoring the NFL in 2012, Lenovo increased its brand awareness among fantasy football players by 32%.
  62. In 2014 Dove Men Care launched its fantasy football hub. It gave its customers the privilege of access to fantasy football advice from the analysis in ESPN.
  63. Theatre became the exclusive sponsor of the Yahoo fantasy football league recaps.
  64. Hilton, the chain of star hotels, launched a free entry fantasy racing context for the Honours club members of its chain.
  65. Global brands like Volkswagen and the Snickers have committed $3 million in fantasy football sponsorships.
  66. Sports leagues benefit from selling fantasy sports players more than premium viewing products.
  67. Fantasy participants are responsible for 17 % of the traffic on ESPN websites. That translates to 90 million unique visitors every month.
  68. ESPN had launched a fantasy football show on television and online ahead of the next NFL season.
  69. CBS Sports has a partnership with Fanduel which features daily fantasy sports content.
  70. In 2014, the NFL entered into an exclusive contract with DirecTV to show out-of-market games because of the fantasy team demands.
  71. 24% of the fantasy players would cancel their premium subscription if they were not playing it.
  72. Each fantasy player in the US and Canada spends about $556 annually on fantasy Sports.6 annually on fantasy sports.
  73. 70% of the fantasy sports players do not have a problem in paying the league fees.
  74. More than 50% of the players spent more than 10 hours of the week to do their research.
  75. 84% of the DFS players gambled on non-DFS games more than once a week.
  76. 61% of the fantasy players say that they would support a lot that makes paid-entry fantasy sports legal.
  77. 8% of the daily fantasy sports players show and addictive behaviour.
  78. 5 % of non-DFS players exhibit addictive gaming behaviour.
  79. 70% of the DFS players have a return on investment of 20% or less on their entry fees.
  80. The biggest prize in National Fantasy Football Championship is $150,000.
  81. The biggest prize in Fantasy Football Players Championship is $250,000.
  82. Draftkings Millionaire Maker offers a prize of 1 million dollars.
  83. The Fantasy Championship Prize amount is $200,000.
  84. The NFL Perfect Fantasy Challenge gives a prize of 1 million dollars.
  85. A Draftkings employee won $350,000 in a tournament. This is considered to be one of the most scandalous events in the history of fantasy sports.
  86. Al Zeidenfeld bought an entry ticket for $20 and ended up winning 1 million dollars in the Draftkings Millionaire Maker tournament in 2016.
  87. It costs a combined $800,000 for Draftkings, Fanduel and Yahoo for lobbying and legal costs.
  88. Fanduel had 229885 entries on the NFL Week 3 tournament.
  89. Draftkings had 220,000 new users signing up during the first weekend of NFL 2015.
  90. 90% of fantasy sports users participate in football.
  91. 23% of fantasy sports users participate in fantasy basketball.
  92. 20% of fantasy sports app users participate in baseball.
  93. 6% of fantasy sports users participate in soccer.
  94. 4% of the users participate in fantasy games not listed above.
  95. The most selected fantasy football players in 2017 and 2018 seasons are you Romeo Lukaku, Harry Kane and Dele Ali.
  96. 33% of consumers check on 26 sites simultaneously to ensure that they have the most accurate and updated data.
  97. 69% off mobile fantasy users use it to get scores of the actual games than just playing fantasy Sports.
  98. Only 39 % of fantasy sports players use a mobile device.
  99. With 50000 downloads, Yahoo! is the number one fantasy sport app, followed by Draftkings and Fanduel.
  100. Users spend $14 on an average for premium online websites and $4 on an average for mobile or tablet applications for fantasy sports channels.

 It is explicit from the above facts that a lot is involved in fantasy sports than just gaming. There are avid gamers to invest their time as well as money in order to achieve a memorable gaming experience.


Melissa is a digital marketing expert. She has been in the marketing industry for over 4 years and carries valuable experience in the respective industry, As a marketing expert in IT Services, she loves to write and share about new technological trends in the domains of mobile, AR, VR and AI. As a fan of numerous sports, she has found a new hobby in dealing with sports betting software and their development.

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