One of the biggest winners of a DraftKings Millionaire Maker contest is under investigation for possibly colluding with his brother on lineup data.
23-year-old Martin Crowley, who goes by ‘papagates‘ on DraftKings, came joint-first in game week 3’s NFL Millionaire Maker contest.
Crowley is the brother of a previous Millionaire Maker winner, Tom Crowley, aka ‘chipotleaddict‘. Both brothers are big DFS players, entering multiple contests every week.
Now both brothers have won Millionaire Maker contests; Tom won the $1 million first prize back in late 2015.
Other DFS players voiced suspicions on forums about the brothers colluding in various daily fantasy contests, including the recent DraftKings Millionaire Maker.
Rotogrinders forum poster Mphst18 flagged up the brothers’ activities in this thread. In their original post, the user notes how ‘papagates’ and ‘chipotleaddict’ have entered multiple contests with the same number of lineups, none of which overlapped in terms of player choices.
Mphst18 raised the idea that the brothers have been ‘circumventing entry limits‘. Such a tactic could give the brothers a leg-up. This is due to how they would have access to double the number of entries as other players.
As Mphst18 noted:
“DraftKings limits the amount [sic] of entries to the Millionaire to 150 per person. But if the brothers were pooling data and sharing entries, as has been alleged by some forum members, it would certainly give them an unfair and illegal advantage.”
However, so far the evidence is unclear. Other forum users have posted counterarguments about the Crowley brothers, such as Rotogrinders user DavidStetler. The community is waiting on DraftKings to give light on the issue.
DFS players aren’t the only ones looking into the possibility of collusion. DraftKings staff are also looking into the matter. Head of compliance Jennifer Aguiar confirmed an investigation but declined to report whether Crowley had received his winnings or not.
Daily fantasy sites have been tightening their rules and regulations recently, in order to better protect players. Sites like DraftKings and FanDuel have added multi-entry limits as a way to stop experienced ‘shark’ players from spamming contests with lineups.
If Aguiar’s response to the matter is anything to go by, it looks like DraftKings are trying to come down hard on contest rule-bending, in a commitment to fair play. She said:
“If you are sharing lineups for the purpose of—for the lack of a better word—gaming the system, that is unacceptable.”
Martin Crowley has denied colluding with his brother over lineups, telling the Wall Street Journal he was “stunned and obviously very upset” about people thinking he had violated DraftKings rules.