Sports betting has been around for a long time – since sports.
But it’s only begun to be legalized outside of Vegas and a few select places in the United States since 2018. Handfuls of people are trying their hand at sports betting, and with the taboo lifting, we see betting odds mentioned on prime-time TV, and traditional sports sites like ESPN, Sportsbookreview and CBS now have their own betting and sports predictions channels, ESPN Chalk and CBS Sportsline.
This means that there has been a feeding frenzy at sportsbooks, taking the money of Joe Schmoe’s left and right. Well, today, we are going to try to put a stop to that.
I am about to reveal three things that the sportsbook and casinos don’t want you to know.
1. The Mistake of Thinking You Betting for or Against Teams
Many people bet with their heart, not with their head. Sorry to call you out, but New York sports fans are notorious for betting on their team no matter what. This is a massive mistake.
The bookies want us to believe we are betting on, for example, the Rams to cover the spread against the Giants. And while the statement I just made in the previous sentence is technically correct, the Rams to cover the spread … it’s the mention of the other team that muffs us up.
When wagering in the most common sports betting market, the point spread, you are NOT betting Team A against Team B. Thinking such is detrimental. When you change your thought process to Team A (or Team B) against the betting line the bookmaker set, opportunities to win start showing up.
Instead of betting on which team you think will perform against the other team, instead focus on weaknesses in the betting lines and only make wagers against betting lines where there is a definitive advantage. You’ll stop starting your handicapping process with teams and start instead by looking at what the lines present. Once you are able to narrow your focus and start spotting soft lines – whether they open that way or move there artificially– you’ll start winning at a higher percentage.
2. The Mistake of Not Line Shopping
Ok. We have just established that in most cases, you are not betting on one team to beat another team. Instead, you are betting on your reasoning skills to deduce which side will beat the betting line set by the sportsbooks.
Most people only have one sportsbook where they place their bets. Some, maybe have two. This is one of the most significant differences between pros and Joes. A pro has several accounts funded and ready to go at the best sportsbooks so that he or she can watch the lines for a game where they see a clear advantage. For example, if I have five accounts, they may all have exactly the same lines for most games. But one book may have taken more action to one side or the other than the rest of the books, so there, the line is a half-point different. Depending on which side I like, this could be in my favor or give more of an edge to the sportsbook.
So, it’s critical to have more than just one or two betting outlets that you can turn to. Sometimes it’s all about looking at a line and judging where you think it’s going to move to later in the week, and then having enough options at hand to time the line and buy-in when it is the most advantageous to you.
3. The Mistake of Mismanaging Your Bankroll
It’s a war of attrition.
To win over the long-term and be profitable, you need to win around 53% of the time. Heck, even the best of the best only win around 55% of the time. So, if you want to stay in business and survive the inevitable stretch of bad beats, do not bet more than 3% of your total bankroll. The standard operating procedure for professional sports bettors is betting units between 1% and 3%.
Personally, my unit is 2%. And I stick to it. It’s easy to go on a good run where you win and win and suddenly decide you should bet gobs of money or bet more games than you normally do. Almost every time, this is when you’ll lose focus and hit a hard couple of weeks of losses. If you keep your wagers within the parameters I just defined, you will survive the beats and come back again on your next winning streak to recover. If you suddenly go from $50 bets to $500 dollar bets, it only takes a few losses to chew up all that hard work you’ve put in to build your bankroll.
So, in recap, only bet against lines where you see a clear advantage (not teams). Make sure you have plenty of options for buying in on the best possible betting line for play. And last of all, make sure to stay disciplined and manage your bankroll correctly.
4. Lack of regularity
Sports betting is hard work and, above all, systematic. In the world of sports and betting, every day and every hour, they bring so much information that to keep the most recent and with more value, we have to focus on the modality we want to master.
At the same time, we suggest – as in any other industry, also in the sports betting industry it is much easier to be successful in this job (it is a job like any other) provides you with fun and pleasure. If this is not the case, you are absolutely wrong, and it will surely be easier and more rewarding for you to focus on something that satisfies you.