Less than two weeks after Yahoo launched a daily fantasy sports website, CBS’s SportsLine has joined the DFS market with its own new website that went live earlier Monday. Highlighted upon launch with no rake for its real money contests, the new website also features a simple interface and unique drafting format.
Like Yahoo, SportsLine provides a unique opportunity to convert traditional fantasy sports fans to the daily fantasy sports vertical. Their broadcast of NFL games and other programming as well as popular season-long fantasy sports leagues could prove to be just the recipe to be compete with DraftKings and FanDuel.
SportsLine is also hoping that the website’s data-driven analysis, stats and live scoring wins over new converts. Players can also subscribe to SportsLine Pro for $10 and receive experts picks, advice and analysis.
There are a limited number of MLB contests currently available and as a new product, overlays are expected for these early guaranteed contests. Players can try out the new product by registering for CBS SportsLine and joining a MLB Winner Take All freeroll, with a prizepool of $10 and a deadline of 8:05 PM ET Monday.
Although MLB contests are only offered at the moment, SportsLine has plans to offer football and other sports.
The SportsLine Lobby
The first impression when looking at the SportsLine lobby is its simplicity. It’s clean, it’s simple and intuitive. Part of this has to do with the limited number of contests in the lobby, but even with a full lineup of events has a more modern design than competitors.
Players can sort the lobby by number of players, buy-in, prizes, start time and entries (per player). At the time of this writing, SportsLine has a limited selection of contest offerings that includes Winner Take All, 10x and 5x contests, where the latter two pay ten and five times the buy-in to top players. New contests are being added throughout the day, including new double up and triple-up contests.
You may be able to find more contests by “entering more contests” from the Upcoming tab. For some reason, not all of these contests are in the main lobby.
Drafting Players at SportsLine
The selecting of players at SportsLine is fundamentally quite a bit different than other daily fantasy sports sites. Instead of drafting players by position and salary cap, SportsLine asks players to draft a single player from a “tier” of 6-8 similar players — some of which may not even play the same position.
So in Tier 1, you may be given the choice of choosing between left fielder Carlos Gonzalez, second basemen Jose Altuve, right fielder Nelson Cruz, first baseman Prince Fielder, right field Charlie Blackmon or shortstop Carlos Correa.
In the MLB contests — which is the only sport running at the moment — you are asked to select a player in nine tiers. In the current contests, eight of the tiers are position players with a starting pitcher rounding out the lineup.
No Rake at SportsLine
By far the item getting the most attention from the launch of SportsLine is the lack of rake being taken from the contests. SportsLine is undoubtedly using their lack of rake to garner interest in SportsLine, but Grant Gurtin, who is the Director of Daily Fantasy Sports at SportsLine, says there are no current plans to start charging rake.
Not planning to have rake any time in the near future! https://t.co/KetYy0qjMR
— Grant Gurtin (@GrantGurtin) August 3, 2015
Typically around 10% per buy-in, rake is the primary method daily fantasy sites accumulate revenue. Whether SportsLine plans to eventually turn the product into something that is ad-supported or use the product to supplement SportsLine Pro remains to be seen.