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Daily Fantasy Sports Glossary

The Daily Fantasy Sports community speaks a lingo of its own.

Beginners, have you ever wandered into DFS chatboxes or forums and felt super confused? Everyone else might be discussing valuable strategy or telling a really good insider joke, but you’re not in on it.

DailyFantasyUK is here to help! Here’s our Daily Fantasy Sports Glossary, full of DFS terminology that you should know.

Daily Fantasy Sports Glossary Level 1: Basic terminology


We’ll start with the very basic. DFS is the acronym for daily fantasy sports. You may also come across variations like DFF (Daily Fantasy Football). These get handy when you’re talking about the game a lot!


The amount of money in your daily fantasy sports account.


The amount of money needed to enter a particular league. This is also called the ‘Entry Fee’.

Level 2: Types of Contests

Draft Kings and FanDuel banned in New York- Getty Image

Cash Game; 50/50 Game

In a 50/50 cash game, the top half of all entrants get paid and the bottom half lose their entry fee. As a rule of thumb, 50/50 leagues are generally “less risky” than other games. However, don’t try and enter the same lineup into multiple 50/50 leagues; if your lineup’s lousy, you’ll lose it all!


A tournament game will have a higher risk-reward variance than a 50/50 cash game, for example rewarding only the top 20% of contestants. This means it’s more difficult to win, but if you do the cash prizes are much higher.

Head 2 Head

A one-on-one daily fantasy league game where two players pitch their lineups against each other. You’ll want to watch out for pros in these games, as they often want to take on beginners for an easy win.


A free game, with no entry fee required. Some have no cash prize, whereas others do offer them.


“Guaranteed Prize Pool”; a league in which the prize is guaranteed, regardless of the number of entrants.


A league in which your prize is a multiple of your entry fee. This is based on the payouts. For example, in a 5x multiplier, the winners get paid out five times their entry fee. The higher the multiplier, the more risk and reward involved.


A league in which the winners don’t receive cash, but rather win a “ticket” into another league. For example, a 10-team qualifier might give away one ticket to a larger, more expensive league.


The percentage of money a daily fantasy site takes from league entry fees.


The amount of money a daily fantasy site has to pay out if not enough contestants enter a contest with a guaranteed prize pool.

Level 3: Fellow Contestants


A relatively inexperienced player, who is new to the game or doesn’t play often.


A pro player who tends to look out for beginners, in order to take advantage of their inexperience and bankroll. Learn how to spot a daily fantasy shark in our guide!


A player who regularly plays games, usually cash games, to build up their bankroll with small gradual wins.

Level 4: Fantasy Players


A strong player who is likely to score you a high number of points. This player is an all-rounder and a safe bet, meaning they’re likely to a popular and expensive pick. Definitely consider studs for cash game lineups, where variance isn’t as important.


A cheap player who isn’t expected to do well. Some contestants use a ‘stud and scrub’ strategy to mix expensive and inexpensive players.

Value Pick

A player whose fantasy salary is low despite putting in good performances. They’re good value because you’re likely to get more bang for your buck! Though watch out as they may not stay valuable for long.

Contrarian Pick

To go against the tide can be a bold move, but sometimes it’s necessary to get great results. Picking a player who is generally unpopular is a contrarian move. Do this in tournaments, where variance is necessary to push you above all the contestants with similar scores. However, the risk of your team bombing means this isn’t a good strategy for cash games.

Level 5: Lineup Strategy


The minimum number of points a player or team could score. You’ll want to have a good floor score for 50/50 cash games, for a better chance of getting into the upper 50%.


The maximum number of points a player or team could score. You want to look out for this score in tournaments, where getting to the top of the table is the only way to win. This is also referred to as ‘Upside’.


The amount of money invested in a player. If you have a lot of exposure to a particular player, it means you have invested a large percentage of your bankroll on him.


To select a player who doesn’t provide great value (or a high $/point).


To avoid a particular player or game. For example, “I’m fading the Ronaldo because he’s injured.”


To reduce the overall risk of your lineups. For example, you would hedge by creating multiple lineups without any of the same players. However, do note that you’re reducing risk at the cost of also reducing upside.

Hedging multiple lineups for daily fantasy sports


To pair multiple players from the same professional team in an effort to increase upside. Stacking is particularly popular in daily fantasy baseball, or for defence players in daily fantasy football.

Level 6: Terms related to Strategy/Lingo that borders on financial jargon!

Daily Fantasy Sports Gamecenter


‘Return on investment’. The returns, in terms of points, you’re expecting from a player or team.


Positive Expected Value. +EV is a situation in which you expect a positive return on your investment. Everyone aims for +EV situations.

$/Point (dollars per point)

It’s the “value for money” you’re getting in the game, or the number of dollars you must spend for every point a player is projected to score. A lower $/point is preferable.


A pessimistic outlook on a particular player, team, or situation. If you’ve got a bearish feeling about a player, you wouldn’t use him in your lineups.


The opposite of bearish; an optimistic outlook on a particular situation. If you’re bullish on a player, you’d use him in your daily fantasy lineups. Both of these are the same terms you’d use to describe a financial stock investor’s outlook.


A strategy in which when you mix up high-salary players with low-priced players in the same lineup.

That’s all, folks. Hope this Daily Fantasy Sports glossary helps you on your way to becoming a lingo pro. Take a look at our Top 3 sites to play DFS, and indulge in your favourite sport from the comfort of your own home.

Want to test your newly learned daily fantasy sports glossary? Take our DFS terminology quiz!

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