Fantasy golf is a great way to increase your understanding of the professional sport, and it is also an interactive way to increase the amount of fun that you have while watching the pros in the PGA play. If you are going to play fantasy golf of any type, it’s important to know what you’re doing. Just drafting the best golfers in the field isn’t going to win your league, and strategy is an important part of which golfers you select. This is true of both yearlong and daily fantasy leagues, both of which have increased in popularity in recent years. Here, we will go over a few basic principles to keep in mind as you’re getting ready to play fantasy golf, either for the first time or the hundredth. Who knows? Maybe this can be a fun new hobby where you can make a few bucks here and there.
Look at the Scoring
The first place to start is how your leagues scores its points. If there are more points given out for birdies and eagles, or if golfers are penalized for missing cuts, the way you draft your golfers should reflect these things. A penalty for missing the cut would draw you toward a golfer that shows consistency in their game, while a bonus for low stroke counts on a given hole would lead you to a golfer that might not be as consistent, but has a better short game as great putters are more likely to get birdies than average putters. Before you draft anyone, know which strengths are valued in your league, and then find the golfers that are most likely to meet those criteria.
Look at the League’s Payout
If you’re playing in a league with a bunch of friends, then fun is a huge part of how you play. If you’re playing with strangers, then money is a bigger motivator. In some leagues, cash prizes for the top finishers are given out. This is especially true of daily fantasy sports leagues, but the payout should influence how you play. For example, if you’re playing in a 50/50 league, then you want a strong team that values consistency. All you need to do is finish in the top 50 percent, and that means that you can pick a safer team than in other leagues. If you are playing in a large tournament where only a handful of fantasy managers can win prizes, then you should be a bit more willing to take risks with who you select for your team. This might include golfers that could have an amazing tournament, but also might miss the cut completely. Your odds of winning money are much lower in this second example, so you need to take risks here and there if you want to have a chance.
Golf is a ton of fun, and fantasy golf is supposed to make it even more so. If you don’t like playing this, or if you are uncomfortable risking money, then don’t do it. Some leagues have free play if this is something that appeals to you, so it is possible to play in a variety of different leagues without ever worrying about risking money. If you do want to play for money, then be sure to stay within your means. Play for an amount that keeps the game fun and interesting, but not for an amount that will make you upset if you lose your money. Keep your play fun, and let your love of the game be what’s important, not the cash. Sure, winning money is fun, but it’s only fun because of the game of golf is there first.