Yahoo! Sports made a name for itself in the fantasy sports world with its season-long leagues. The platform attracted more than 10 million users to its fantasy leagues over the course of many years. Then, in 2015, Yahoo! Sports launched a daily fantasy sports platform to compete with the likes of DraftKing and FanDuel.
Yahoo! Sports daily fantasy copies a lot of the best features of the season-long leagues, including a clean interface for entering contests and drafting players. It’s also distinguished by having a number of high-profile free tournaments with guaranteed payouts of up to $150,000.
On top of that, Yahoo! partnered with Las Vegas-based MGM Resorts to create an online sportsbook. Right now, it’s only available for placing wagers in New Jersey. But, the selection of games you can bet on is very robust, and there is an impressive array of prop bets available.
Sign up and deposit
Signing up for Yahoo! Sports is fast and easy. Just create an account with your email, and you’re good to go. If you already have a Yahoo! account — as anyone who’s played season-long fantasy with Yahoo! Sports does — you can skip this step.
Depositing money is less seamless, though. Yahoo! only accepts payments through PayPal. So, you need to create a PayPal account and transfer money to it via ACH bank transfer or credit card before you can deposit money into your daily fantasy sports account.
Signing up for Yahoo! Sportsbook is a completely different process. You need to create an account with BetMGM, MGM Resorts’ online platform. But, you can deposit money via credit card or ACH bank transfer in addition to PayPal.
Yahoo! Sports Sportsbook
Yahoo! Sportsbook is surprisingly robust despite only being available in the state of New Jersey. The platform allows you to bet on NBA, NFL, NHL, college football, college basketball, and soccer games, as well as golf tournaments, NASCAR, and tennis matches. The only major US sports league that you can’t bet on is the MLB.
The sportsbook interface is extremely user-friendly. You’ll find all the available sports listed in tabs across the top of the display, along with an option for live events so you can bet on games in progress. When you place a bet, your betslip appears on the same screen. That makes it easy to keep track of your wagers and set up parlays and round robins.
For most matches, there is a wide variety of prop bets. An NBA game, for example, had around 45 primary prop bets, including a slew of additional wagers on individual players’ performances. In addition, there are "Price Boost" bets, which are somewhat unique to Yahoo! Sportsbook. These individual prop bets are offered at above-market odds in the hours before a match.
The Yahoo! Sportsbook interface does offer a few basic stats about a team’s recent performance and the results of prior head-to-head matchups. But, this research almost seems out of place given that there’s so little of it. It would be more helpful to have betting-specific statistics included in the platform, but you’ll have to look elsewhere for this information.
Yahoo! Sports Fantasy Sports
Yahoo! Sports daily fantasy supports contests in the major American sports leagues—the NBA, NHL, NFL, MLB, and PGA—plus the UEFA soccer league. That’s a relatively slim selection of sports compared to competitors like DraftKings, but these are the same sports that Yahoo! built its season-long fantasy audience around.
Contest types are also fairly limited. There are guaranteed tournaments, head-to-head contests, 50/50 matches, and leagues, but no non-traditional fantasy contests. That said, users can create their own contests at will, so there’s never a shortage of fantasy games to enter.
The main attraction to Yahoo! Sports’ contests is that entry fees are often extremely low, while prize payouts are high. The best example of this is the annual NFL Yahoo Cup, which doesn’t charge an entry fee and offers $150,000 in guaranteed prize payouts. Similarly, the NBA Yahoo Cup tournament is free to enter and promises $25,000 in prize money (all at the time of writing).
On top of that, Yahoo! Sports prides itself on promoting fair play. Contests are marked as “Rookie Only” or “Veteran.” Many tournaments allow you to enter an additional lineup for every 100 players, ensuring that you have a fair chance to win against players who simply compete on volume.
Another plus is that the Yahoo! Sports interface is very easy to use. The lobby is much less crowded than what you’ll find from other daily fantasy sports sites. Plus, drafting players is a breeze since Yahoo! uses the same tried-and-true interface that it’s developed over years of running season-long leagues.
Yahoo! Sports’ daily fantasy mobile interface is actually baked into the existing Android and iOS apps for season-long fantasy leagues. While this seems like a recipe for disaster, it actually functions pretty well. You can switch between daily fantasy and season-long fantasy with a simple menu icon, so the two types of contests remain completely separated.
The app mimics most of the features of the web interface, although it’s noticeably more crowded. There’s not much screen space devoted to the list of contests you can join, so browsing can take a while. That said, you can do just about everything with the app that you can do online, including mixing up your lineup right up until game time.
The Yahoo! Sportsbook app is actually called “BetMGM NJ Sports,” so it can be hard to find if you don’t know what you’re looking for. But, the app itself is very well-designed and is just as easy to navigate as the web interface. The biggest difference is that your betslip is on its own page, accessed from a menu at the bottom of the app.
Yahoo! provides support for daily fantasy sports via email or live chat. However, you have to jump through a series of hoops just to get to the point of reaching the contact page. The online knowledge base that the platform provides isn’t all that detailed, either.
For the Yahoo! Sportsbook, you’re directed to MGM Resorts for support. The company offers live chat or email options. There’s also an online help center to answer frequently asked questions, but it’s not particularly comprehensive.
Yahoo! Sports daily fantasy is only available in the US, in every state except for Arizona, Hawaii, Idaho, Iowa, Montana, Nevada, and Washington. Yahoo! Sportsbook is only available in New Jersey at this time.
Yahoo! Sports has put together a relatively basic yet very well made platform for daily fantasy sports and sports betting. The user interface for daily fantasy contests is very inviting and uncrowded, and the availability of free contests with guaranteed prizes is a major plus.
The number of sports you can play fantasy around are somewhat limited, but the sportsbook offers a much wider range of options. Unfortunately, Yahoo! Sportsbook is limited to New Jersey for now, even though other states have legalized online sports betting.
So while it's a service we like, it just can't quite compete at the moment with the big boys over at FanDuel and DraftKings.
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