DraftKings will guarantee more than six figures in prize pools for fantasy contests based on Saturday’s UFC 187, Johnson vs. Cormier.
$100K+ on the line
More of the money — $70,000 — is guaranteed across two contests:
- A $40,000 guaranteed prize pool, with a $20 entry fee. Enter here.
- A $30,000 GPP, with a $3 entry fee. Enter here.
Neither contest is more than half full, currently, so you should be able to enter, as long as you do it Friday or early Saturday.
There are plenty of contests with smaller guarantees, include $10K GPPs with entry fees of $100 and $300, respectively.
How do I play?
DFS for MMA is a lot like it is for other sports, and in a lot of ways it’s easier. You just pick a lineup of five MMA fighters competing on the card — in this case the matches scheduled for UFC 187 on Saturday.
Your lineup must fall under a salary cap restriction set by DraftKings — $50,000. Most fighters range from $8,000 to $12,000.
After you have entered the contests and picked your team, all you have to do is sit back, watch the fights, and track your team.
At DraftKings, fighters accumulate fantasy points for the following events during a fight:
- Significant Strikes (SS): +0.5 PTS
- Advance (ADVC): +1 PT
- Takedown (TD): +2 PTS
- Reversal/Sweep (REV): +2 PTS
- Knockdown (KD): +3 PTS
Fight Conclusion Bonuses
- 1st Round Win (1rW+): +100 PTS
- 2nd Round Win (2rW+): +70 PTS
- 3rd Round Win (3rW+): +50 PTS
- 4th Round Win (4rW+): +40 PTS
- 5th Round Win (5rW+): +40 PTS
- Decision Win (WBD+) : +25 PTS
While it’s pretty easy to enter a contest and fill out your team, there is definitely some strategy involved to setting your lineup.
The most points available are for wins that end before a flight’s scheduled three rounds (or five rounds, in the case of championship fights). So you want to try to get fighters on your roster who are more likely to end their fights by knocking out their opponent or by submitting them.
Beyond that, you want to look for fighters who typically are successful at hitting their opponents. Each significant strike is worth half a fantasy point. And since championship fights can consist of two more rounds than regular fights, there is a possibility of more scoring events if fights last into a fourth or fifth round.
To see how fighters have done historically, you can head over to UFC.com. For instance, here’s the stat profile for Anthony Johnson, who is vying for the light heavyweight title on Saturday.
Also contests at Kountermove
If you’re into DFS contests for MMA, and want to expand your horizons beyond DraftKings, you have another option. Kountermove is a fantasy site that has been around for quite some time that focuses just on combat sports, and mostly on MMA and the UFC.
For this weekend, the site will guarantee more than $30,000 across a variety of contests, including:
Registration is still open for these contests, and there are plenty of slots open as of Friday afternoon. And there are plenty of other contests with varying entry fee levels and GPPs you can enter as well.
Kountermove’s scoring is similar to DraftKings, but it is not identical. You can get more details here. The salary cap is also half that of DK’s, with fighter salaries proportionately lower.
Here is the list of fights going on, with start timesand television for different portions of the card:
UFC 187 PPV Co-Main Event
Middleweight.: UFC Champion
UFC 187 PPV Undercard (10 p.m. ET)
UFC 187 FOX Sports 1 “Prelims” (8 p.m. ET)