DFS Strategy: Cash Games or GPP? Which is Better?

by Cole Paganelli | March 24, 2020 |

Daily Fantasy Sports have a bunch of different ways to get in on the action, but there are two main types of games that you will choose from most days. Cash Games vs. GPPs is a really interesting topic and it is something that most novice players do not understand well.

Which One Should You Play?

This question is about your personal preference and your playstyle, but you need to be aware of the advantages of each. Cash games are typically games where people win double their money if they finish in the top 50th percentile, but there are variations like head-to-heads, triple-ups, other things of a similar ilk. GPPs are typically contests with a scaled payout structure where 1st place is awarded the most money.

There are two keys to choosing what fits your playstyle best. First of all, continue to monitor both GPP and cash game cash lines and expected return over a period of time.

For me, I noticed in certain sports that cash game lineups were so similar to GPP cash lines, that I would have been much more profitable in GPPs. This can change by sport or contest size, so just make sure you understand the benefits of both in an ever-changing industry.

The other key to picking the right contest is to understand your playstyle. Do you prefer to be contrarian or do you tend to stick to the “best” and chalky plays? When you play in any contest, what is your typical range of outcomes?

For some people, they will see their lineups finish first or last a lot more than others because they like to play lineups with more variation than the average player. This person is more likely to benefit from playing GPPs because when they win, they should win more money in GPPs. If you are normally in the middle of the contest, cash games are likely better for you.

How to Play Cash Games

When you are playing cash games, it is often best to simply just make the best possible lineup based on projections. If you want to play into the meta, you can often try to block popular plays if you do not want to be too different than the field. When there is a very highly owned player, most players in cash will just bite the bullet to avoid the risk of the chalk having a great game.

Attacking GPPs

GPPs are greatly tilted toward the first few spots and to make back your return long-term, you need to focus on placing at the top of a tournament. This doesn’t mean making bad plays, but it means playing players with high upside and maybe more risk who are lower owned because of their risk.

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