FanDuel Nabs Betting, Daily Fantasy Deal With The Basketball Tournament

Posted on: July 1, 2020, 12:53h. 

Last updated on: July 1, 2020, 02:18h.

The Basketball Tournament (TBT) — a hoops competition with a $1 million winner-take-all prize pool — is partnering with FanDuel to bring sports wagering and daily fantasy sports (DFS) offerings to bettors for this year’s event.

FanDuel Teams With The Basketball Tournament
Former NBA player and Syracuse star Tyler Lydon will lead Boheim’s Army in The Basketball Tournament, which FanDuel users can wager on. (Image: NBC Sports)

In previous years, TBT featured an NCAA Tournament-esque field of 64 teams, with eight teams spread across eight regions. This year, because of the coronavirus pandemic, the field is condensed to 24 teams, with all games being held in Columbus, Ohio.

This is the seventh year of the competition and the games — which start July 4 and run through July 14 — will be televised on various ESPN networks. For DFS players, the TBT 2020 offering will be familiar to those acquainted with FanDuel’s NBA product.

Daily paid fantasy contests will mirror FanDuel’s NBA product, with a $100 salary cap to be spread across two guards, two forwards and two utility players,” said FanDuel and TBT in a statement,

FanDuel will assign salaries for players based on their past performances in the tournament and college statistics.

As part of the agreement, the DFS firm will promote the competition, while TBT features FanDuel signage and commercials over the course of play. FanDuel is a unit of British bookmaker Flutter Entertainment (OTC:PDYPY).

Homework for Bettors

As is the case with any other event, savvy bettors will do their homework when it comes to the tournament, and there is some to-do because the tournament is governed by NCAA rules of play, with a mixture of international and NBA policies. All games will feature three officials, which is the case in the NBA and NCAA.

Most TBT protocols will be familiar to college hoops fans, except rather than two 20-minute halves, the tournament’s games are played in nine-minute quarters, or a minute longer than a high school quarter. Additionally, players are allowed six fouls, as is the case in the NBA and international professional leagues. Five fouls are the maximum in a college basketball game.

TBT also employs the “Elam Ending,” which was used in the 2020 NBA All-Star Game. Named for Ball State Professor Nick Elam, the Elam Ending eliminates the game clock halfway through the fourth quarter and sets a target score. The first team to that mark wins the game.

Elam analyzed 2,000 NBA and NCAA games over a decade-long stretch, finding that half the teams trailing late in the contest turn to intentional fouling to stop the clock. But the strategy only panned out 1.5 percent of the time.

Filling a Void With Familiar Faces

Because of COVID-19, the 2020 NCAA Tournament — one of the most heavily wagered-on events in the US — was scrapped, and the NBA season was postponed. The pros restart their season at the end of this month in Orlando, presenting TBT and FanDuel with an opportunity to satiate basketball-hungry fans and gamblers.

DFS competitors and bettors are likely to recognize some tournament players, as many of the squads are comprised of athletes from high-level Division I schools, including Clemson, Ohio State, Purdue, and Syracuse, just to name a few.

Last year, 59 TBT competitors had some NBA experience.