The History of Fantasy Sports

Many people out there love fantasy sports, but not everyone knows about their origins and development. That’s why, in this article, we dive into the world of fantasy sports to find out more about them and share with you some valuable knowledge on one of the most beloved facets of sports.

What is Fantasy Sports?

Fantasy sports are also called rotisserie sports or simply roto. This encompasses a number of games that permit players to play a virtual match or a virtual season of a sport. The player must pose as the general manager and the field manager of their team and work with the lineup to make their team advance as much as possible. There are many different fantasy sports out there, but the two main ones, at least in the U.S., are fantasy baseball and fantasy gridiron football.

Fantasy Baseball

Fantasy baseball was the first sport to be utilised for fantasy purposes. Actually, the idea of fantasy baseball initially came from a board game introduced in 1951 by entrepreneur Dick Seitz, named APBA, which stood for American Professional Baseball Association. Later on, a more modern but rather similar game was developed called Strat-o-matic.

People who wanted to play that game would annually order cards that contained some statistical data taken from the prior season. This data, together with the roll of the dice, would determine the outcome of the player’s turns. Of course, in the 1990s, computerised versions of those games appeared, and the whole concept of fantasy baseball became less analogical. 

Fantasy Gridiron Football

Fantasy Gridiron football emerged back in 1962 when the owner of the Oakland Raiders, Bill Winkenbach, created it with some friends, allegedly while staying in one of the rooms in the New York City hotel. The functioning of the game was rather simple, as the league members would draft players from the National Football League and American Football League into their own franchises. After that, on the basis of their actual performances, members would get points and compete against each other. 

As this game became more and more popular, many different variations emerged, with various scoring systems, league rules, and many other slightly divergent aspects. Of course, there are several online options for this line of gaming as well, just like there is more than one list of new online casinos. This is due to the popularity of online gaming in many different forms. 

Other Fantasy Sports

Even though baseball and football are the most common ones, there are many other fantasy sports, such as basketball, ice hockey, gold, and even auto racing. The concept of fantasy sports itself originated in the United States, but it quickly caught on in other countries, too, such as Canada and the United Kingdom, and in Europe as well. There, football (soccer) became rather popular due to the large following of the actual sports in those areas of the world.

Similarly, other sports caught on around the globe, such as tennis, cricket, and Australian rules football. Over time, fantasy sports became a proper business, with an annual revenue of over $1 billion, already in the early 2010s. 

Fantasy sports started with an idea and a board game and became one of the biggest sports-related phenomena of our time. For this reason, it will be interesting to see the further developments of fantasy sports and find out more about what this interesting world has to offer. If you love fantasy sports, now you have some more knowledge on the matter, which is useful to dive deeper into this phenomenon and find the perfect niche where your ideal team can thrive.