- Great site and app design
- Tons of free contests to practice
- Customizable leagues for you and your friends
- Lots of promos and odds boosts
- Wide range of sports and bet types
- Some expert players with unfair advantages
- A very sketchy company history
- Indirect and unhelpful customer service
- Some promotion ads can be misleading
Despite some unethical behavior and legal concerns, Draft Kings still boasts millions of loyal users and remains a prominent player in the fantasy sports industry. They have expanded their offerings beyond daily fantasy, embracing their identity as a gambling platform.
In addition to a strong daily fantasy platform, Draft Kings now offers a competitive sportsbook, a sizable casino, and live-dealer card games. Today, they stand as a premier sports betting, daily fantasy, and online casino enterprise globally.
Draft Kings History
Whether Draft Kings is the best sports betting and online casino site for you depends entirely on what you’re looking for. To find out for sure, it’s best to explore the site, learn about its history, and understand everything it has to offer. So, let’s dive in and take a closer look at Draft Kings.
Draft Kings has an interesting history. Founded in 2012 by three former Vista Print employees, Jason Robins, Matthew Kalish, and Paul Liberman, the company initially operated from Liberman’s house. Their first product was a one-on-one baseball contest, launched alongside the opening day of Major League Baseball in 2012.
In 2012, Draft Kings secured its first major round of fundraising, receiving a $1.4 million investment from Ryan Moore and other investors through the Cambridge-based venture capital firm, Accomplice.
The MLB also played a role in the company’s rise by investing an undisclosed amount in Draft Kings in 2013, making it the first professional sports organization to invest in a daily fantasy sports company.
By 2014, Draft Kings had experienced significant growth, awarding $50 million in winnings to players of various fantasy sports, and reaching milestones of 50,000 daily active users and approximately one million registered players.
In 2015, Draft Kings entered another funding round and secured a substantial $300 million in investments, led by Fox Sports, with participation from notable entities like the Kraft Group (owners of the New England Patriots) and Wellington Management (a prominent financial firm in Boston).
In a significant agreement, Draft Kings committed to spending $250 million on advertising with Fox Sports over the next three years. However, due to the acquisition of 21st Century Fox, Fox’s stake in Draft Kings is now owned by the Walt Disney Company, showcasing Disney’s extensive business reach.
In 2015, Draft Kings expanded to the UK after obtaining a license from the UK Gambling Commission for pool wagering services. Their official launch in the UK commenced on February 5th, 2016, starting with daily fantasy football (soccer). The following year, Draft Kings acquired a skilled games license from Malta, enabling them to operate in the European Union, where gambling licenses from other EU countries are accepted.
Draft Kings’ official online sportsbook was launched in 2018, making it the first legal online sportsbook outside of Nevada to operate in New Jersey. Since then, they have expanded their sportsbook to other states like New York, Indiana, Iowa, West Virginia, and Mississippi.
Recently, Draft Kings underwent a reverse merger, valuated at $3.3 billion, making it a publicly traded company. This merger was made possible through Diamond Eagle Acquisitions Corp., a shell corporation specifically created for merging with another company to become publicly traded, and European tech company SB Tech Global Ltd., which specializes in sports betting solutions.
Draft Kings Design
Draft Kings is known for its unique approach, not only in discovering legal loopholes but also in its website design. The site stands out with its sleek, professional, and user-friendly interface, whether you’re using the daily and weekly fantasy platforms or exploring the sportsbook.
Creating and adjusting your fantasy lineup has never been easier. On one side of the screen, you can search for players by name, position, or scoring. On the other side, you have your draft lineup, where adding or removing players is just a matter of a simple click.
The sportsbook’s design is equally impressive, deviating from the standard layout you might expect. Instead of the traditional left-to-right organization, Draft Kings presents everything in a top-down format. Sports and markets are at the top of the page, followed by a clear and easily legible range of potential bets in the section below.
What I particularly like is that each bet is phrased as a question, such as “Who will cover the spread?” or “Who will win?” The bet slip is embedded on the right-hand side of the page, giving you a convenient and seamless betting experience.
Another great feature is the fully integrated layout that allows you to place in-play bets and futures on the same page, eliminating the need to navigate to different sections of the site. Overall, Draft Kings’ website design sets it apart from the rest and enhances the user experience.
Content and Features
Draft Kings is well-known for its daily and weekly fantasy sports platforms, allowing users to create fantasy teams for various sports, including football, American football, baseball, basketball, hockey, golf, tennis, CFL, NASCAR, MMA, eSports, and XFL.
What might be lesser-known is that Draft Kings also provides a sportsbook for betting enthusiasts. While not the largest sportsbook available, it offers wagers on 18 different sports, including international leagues. You can place future bets or enjoy live in-play betting for an immersive experience. However, it’s worth noting that Draft Kings’ live streaming capabilities are not as comprehensive as some other sportsbooks.
Additionally, Draft Kings offers an online casino, which might be considered the least robust of all their platforms. Nevertheless, it adds a touch of entertainment when you want a break from fantasy sports or the sportsbook. The casino features slots, table games, card games, and live poker options.
Draft Kings Mobile and Desktop Experience
Draft Kings stands out as one of the top leaders in mobile gaming, offering two separate apps for fantasy and sportsbook activities. Both apps are highly regarded for their excellent performance, user-friendly interface, and seamless functionality. Available on Android and iOS devices, Draft Kings apps have received consistently high user ratings. If you’re interested in playing mobile casino games, simply find the “casino” tab at the top of the sportsbook app and start gaming from wherever you are.
Suggestions that I have for Draft Kings
I have a suggestion: It would be beneficial for Draft Kings to address and rectify their past shady practices. While I truly want to like the company, I find it challenging to overlook the ethically questionable actions they have taken over the years. Moreover, their recent use of a shell company for a ‘merger’ raises concerns about their commitment to becoming a transparent and honest operation in the near future.