Addicted to Daily Fantasy Sports | “The Fantasy Sports Gamble” | FRONTLINE

>>NARRATOR: To find out whether addiction was becoming an issue, we talked to counselors who work with problem gamblers across the country and wound up in Auburn, Alabama, to meet a gambling addict named Josh Adams.>>Gambling for some people is fun, and some people can do it normally. I’m not one of those people. If you have a mind like an addict has, it’s dangerous.>>NARRATOR: He’s been a gambling addict for much of his life. He says he’s lost hundreds of thousands of dollars betting on sports. He thought he’d recovered, but then discovered daily fantasy sports, playing for years on a number of different sites.>>It’d be akin to an alcoholic finding out about a whole new street of bars that he or she never knew about.>>BOGDANICH: How much time a day did you spend on picking players?>>80% of my day was spent either researching or analyzing. I would listen to Fantasy Sports Radio all day. I’d have one ear bud in my ear.>>BOGDANICH: How much money did you lose?>>Close to $20,000.>>NARRATOR: The New York Times article on Josh’s account of his addiction struck a nerve with some readers.>>It had a profound impact on me, to the point where I almost cried as I was reading it because I could relate to Josh’s story, and kind of what I was going through at the time.>>NARRATOR: Paul is a gambling addict in his 20s. We agreed to conceal his identity and voice because he’s afraid of ruining his career prospects. Like Josh, he says an addiction he thought was under control was reignited when he found daily fantasy sports.>>BOGDANICH: You knew you had a gambling problem. Why did you play that first game on fantasy sports?>>I didn’t think it was gambling. One of my friends was playing online fantasy, and he sent me a link, and the deal was he gets a free entry, and I get a free entry. That was my first time on the website.>>NARRATOR: Paul showed us his betting records.>>There’s one day where I deposited $5,300, lost, then deposited again a few hours later.>>BOGDANICH: And?>>$10,000 again. If that’s not an indication of problem gambling, I don’t know what is.>>BOGDANICH: How much do you estimate you lost?>>I think it’s a little bit over 60. It’s between $60,000 and $65,000.>>BOGDANICH: Did you have it to lose?>>No. It’s mostly credit card debt that I had to take on.>>BOGDANICH: Now that you’ve stopped playing daily fantasy sports, are there triggers that you worry about?>>Anytime I see one of those commercials for FanDuel or DraftKings, I think about it.>>After I played FanDuel the first time, I was hooked.>>I start pacing back and forth.>>It’s like the best adrenaline rush ever.>>NARRATOR: Josh Adams says he feels the same.>>The only urges I still have are when I see the daily fantasy sports advertising. They don’t say that there are going to be more losers than there are winners.>>$75 million a

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