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Kiev O'Neil October 5th, This guide is a guest post by Kiev O'Neil. Kiev's specialty is the Big Kiev is also the owner and lead author for The Odds Breakers. The Odds Breakers has free and premium picks for most sports betting markets, as well as a sports betting podcast. We are currently in the wake of the legalization of sports betting across the United States and there is no better time than right now to go over some of the key disciplines to become or remain a successful sports investor.
Even the best players in this business have to remind themselves to stay disciplined and play with diligence to remain profitable rather than picking random sides just for the gambling fix while tilting after a bad day. The biggest mistakes that people make are betting past their limitations, playing for a need, and doing it with a much larger expectation. Any of those 3 mistakes make sports betting not only not fun, but they also make is much more consequential and irresponsible.
The reason that people should sports bet is because of their love of sports more than their love of money. The great thing about sports betting is that you do not have to have a fan interest in either team for the game to be fun to watch and meaningful. Wagering on sports is the ultimate game within the game. Sports Betting is a marathon and definitely not a sprint so take off your seat belt, relax and enjoy the long ride.
Some people come into sports betting with the misconception that it is easy to make a living doing it, they do not follow best practices making the game turn into playing roulette. The 10 in the is the sportsbook's take on your bet and also called the juice or the vig.
The juice is how sportsbooks draw a profit in every single balanced line. For the books, it all evens out in the end. But wait! No, it is actually half of that at 4. Think of it as the total amount risked vs. Barely enough for a months rent but still nice to be up So as you can see, sports betting for most people should be something done for incremental income or a long term investment rather than something one can expect to rely on as a main source of income.
Being over If the average vig is only 2. We will discuss implied odds, and estimated odds later in this article. If you do it right, you can win and beat these books! After you read your sportsbook reviews and follow the best practices in book selection, it is time to select where you want to spend your time shopping.
One huge mistake that public bettors make is that they only choose just one sportsbook when there are many reasons to have multiple options. Using multiple books gives the sports bettor an extra edge from not only shopping the lines and getting the best numbers, but also it helps tell them that new information is out such as an injury that just has been made public or a large betting syndicate's interest in a number. Every half point matters in this business in the long run so please do not sell yourself short.
Some of the best bettors in the world can go on a streak of winning or more bets in a row, and at the same time, they could lose or more in a row. These streaks are unpredictable so who is to say that it won't happen right when they start the betting season.
When things are going bad, do take a couple of days or a week whatever you need off occasionally. Trying to force plays is when most public players get sunk. They try to make it all back the next day over and over again. It deviates them from what they originally set out to do and it usually ends badly. Like I stated earlier, you must remember the huge variances that exists in games.
Even if you have a huge value on a game with a great number, it doesn't mean that you necessarily are going to win that bet. This method is especially important if you plan on betting consistently throughout the whole season. I know these bet sizes sound small but we must remember that sports betting based on your own plays should be for pure recreation or long term investment and you should not put yourself in a situation that can be detrimental. Don't pay attention to what people say or what people are doing.
The amount of money that you place on your bets is literally none of anyone else's business. Trust me when I say that it is much more enjoyable to not let a losing week phase your state of mind than bragging about how big your bets are. In order to keep this fun and less stressful, you must incorporate these disciplines. Your average bet size should be around units during your season. Using this system based upon your numbers which are the estimated odds compared to the implied odds from the sportsbooks.
The larger the discrepancy the larger the bet. Only use discretionary money in your savings, meaning if it all goes bye bye, then it will not affect your family, credit, happiness, and lifestyle. In most sports, and especially American ones, there are certain key numbers that have more value to you and more risk to the sportsbooks unless properly accounted for. The reason for this is because final scores tend to end on certain numbers more than they do on others due to the way the game is played and scored.
Being that there are so few points scored in Hockey, and especially in soccer, the smaller numbers are much more valuable and expensive to buy on and off of. An example of buying on or off of a number is paying the sportsbook 25 cents on the dollar to move from a -5 to a Football key numbers are definitely the most significant due to how the game is scored and the amount of points scored per game.
Being that most scoring is increments of 3 and 7, those two key numbers are definitely the most common, for example, games ending with final scores of or The key numbers in order of significance in the NFL are 3, 7, 10, 6, 14 and 4. Below is a sample taken from a sample from an article on Sports Insights of 2, NFL football games from to and here are the results which can be used as predictive probabilities that future NFL games end on these margins of victory or as we call them spreads.
Being that key numbers are more prominent, and games end landing on these denominations more than not, the price to buy on or off of them is higher. To buy off of a 3 in NFL football it will cost you 25 cents on the dollar and to buy off of a 12 it will cost only 10 cents but that does not make it a good decision necessarily. Also keep in mind that in college football, the percentages on key numbers are not quite as large as the NFL due to a larger variation in final scores.
I comprised a chart of implied winning percentages based on the spread below for NFL football. These numbers are called implied odds because it is based on an implied spread from the sportsbooks. Remember that we have to be correct on our bets on average over This means that bets with an expected value of over As you see from the chart below, moving from a 0 to a 1 is a much smaller change in winning percentage than going from a If your number is at on a game and the book's number is a , then it would not be a smart play to make since it only adds 1.
However, if the line moves to a As long as there isn't many outliers injuries, trends or bad spots this could be a play. The larger your deviation from When it comes to key numbers, you should always at least look to bet both sides and I can explain later in this article. I can probably write multiple books on sports betting methods and systems, but I will try and keep it short for the sake of this article.
When discussing this section it is important to define what a sports bettor is and what a handicapper is. A sports bettor is simply someone who bets on sports and a handicapper is someone who assigns advantage through numbers in order to even the odds of the outcome in a game. You do not have to be a handicapper to bet on sports and you do not have to bet on sports to be a handicapper, although being good at both certainly helps your chances of becoming profitable.
Handicappers have a framework or a methodology of coming up with a number for their estimated odds to assign against the spread on a game. In sports like football and basketball, the most common way that good handicappers come up with a line or a spread is using predictive power ratings. Power Ratings are a system to develop a handicap in a game by ranking all the teams in one league from worst to first with a number assigned to that team representing the denomination on how my points better or worse they are from their peers.
For example, if the Patriots are playing the Dallas Cowboys, you can predict the difference in points that the game will finish at. Say the Patriots are a 6. If this game is being played on a neutral field like in London, your line on the game would be the Patriots favored by 5. If the sportsbook line is the Patriots favored by 7 and there are no injuries, trends, bad matchups or bad spots to account for, you might bet the Cowboys here based on the fact that you are coming off of a key number and went past the 6.
According to my chart above, you would have at least 4. In football and in basketball there are also points assigned for home-field advantage. Each home field has its own number based on past performances but usually, it is about 3 points and rarely over 3.
This means that if the Bears are playing the Packers in Chicago, and both teams are rated equal, then the Bears would be favored by 3 points and if the game was in Green Bay, the Packers would be favored by 3 points. The Handicappers that set lines for the sportsbooks factor this in just as you should when coming up with your number. There are many different methods and ways that people use to create power ratings and nobody ever wants to give up the recipe to their secret sauce.
In general, power ratings are created by a handicapper who assigns numbers to certain aspects of a team. In order to create your own power ratings, you will have to have a vast knowledge of each team while updating your numbers on a daily basis. Creating and constantly keeping up on your own power ratings takes up a whole lot of your free time. For College football, this could take up 3 or 4 hours of every Sunday morning during the season. If you haven't tried to do this before, or you are pressed for time, I highly recommend using somebody else's power ratings that are reputable.
At least this way you can get your number without having to take a ton of time to put in the work and instead focus more on individual match-ups and situation spots. If you want to eventually start making power ratings yourself, you can use these public power rating numbers and compare them to your own. You can find these updated during the season early every week on their respective websites. It is important to ask yourself if you trust yourself more than companies that do this for a living.
Even the best handicappers compare their power ratings in case they missed something. After you get your power rated number, you next have to look at things like injuries, individual match-ups, situational spots, and trends. When it comes to injuries, it definitely matters who it is at what positions in order to deduct the appropriate amount of points for each sport.
In football, it might take three starting offensive lineman to be listed as out in order to affect your power rating by 1 point, yet when it comes to quarterbacks, you may have to adjust your power rating by up to even 11 points depending on who it is. For example, Deshawn Watson over the last two years was worth 8 to 10 points to the line and that was made obvious when he didn't play.
When factoring in injuries, we also must remember to give back points depending on how good the backup player is to that position. Laveon Bell could have been a larger difference when he sat out for the Steelers last season if it wasn't for the good play of James Connor.
Looking at individual match-ups is also very important to a handicap. The previous nationwide ban on sports betting was unconstitutional, and the Supreme Court overturned the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act in Do you want to bet on your favorite team? Read on for the top 7 online sports betting tips for beginners. There are lots of sports betting terms that are confusing to the beginner. Watch, listen, and learn before jumping in and placing a bet. Do your research and look at the odds and place your bets for the teams with a real chance at winning.
Set a realistic amount. One of the appeals of sports betting is its simplicity. There are lots of great sports betting sites. Keeping detailed records helps you stick to your budget. Keep track of your selections and what the odds of your selection are. Write down how much you wagered and what the results were. Did you win?
Write down the payout. There are so many different sports, leagues, and games available for betting. Narrow it down to a few and stick to them.
In football and in basketball there are also points assigned for home-field advantage. Each home field has its own number based on past performances but usually, it is about 3 points and rarely over 3. This means that if the Bears are playing the Packers in Chicago, and both teams are rated equal, then the Bears would be favored by 3 points and if the game was in Green Bay, the Packers would be favored by 3 points.
The Handicappers that set lines for the sportsbooks factor this in just as you should when coming up with your number. There are many different methods and ways that people use to create power ratings and nobody ever wants to give up the recipe to their secret sauce. In general, power ratings are created by a handicapper who assigns numbers to certain aspects of a team.
In order to create your own power ratings, you will have to have a vast knowledge of each team while updating your numbers on a daily basis. Creating and constantly keeping up on your own power ratings takes up a whole lot of your free time. For College football, this could take up 3 or 4 hours of every Sunday morning during the season.
If you haven't tried to do this before, or you are pressed for time, I highly recommend using somebody else's power ratings that are reputable. At least this way you can get your number without having to take a ton of time to put in the work and instead focus more on individual match-ups and situation spots. If you want to eventually start making power ratings yourself, you can use these public power rating numbers and compare them to your own. You can find these updated during the season early every week on their respective websites.
It is important to ask yourself if you trust yourself more than companies that do this for a living. Even the best handicappers compare their power ratings in case they missed something. After you get your power rated number, you next have to look at things like injuries, individual match-ups, situational spots, and trends. When it comes to injuries, it definitely matters who it is at what positions in order to deduct the appropriate amount of points for each sport.
In football, it might take three starting offensive lineman to be listed as out in order to affect your power rating by 1 point, yet when it comes to quarterbacks, you may have to adjust your power rating by up to even 11 points depending on who it is. For example, Deshawn Watson over the last two years was worth 8 to 10 points to the line and that was made obvious when he didn't play. When factoring in injuries, we also must remember to give back points depending on how good the backup player is to that position.
Laveon Bell could have been a larger difference when he sat out for the Steelers last season if it wasn't for the good play of James Connor. Looking at individual match-ups is also very important to a handicap. You might have two teams power rated very closely together, but one of those teams might be great on offense and pass-defense but so bad against the run that they will rarely possess the ball and get clocked most of the game without being able to stop the other team that can rush the ball.
Looking at these match-ups may not only take you off of a play, but it also can swing you so much that you start to like the other side of the play betting on the other team. Remember that sportsbooks, just like you, also may have factored in the match-up adjustment to these lines so make sure to always question your number and compare your results with your sharper peers. Situational spots are also very important to the handicap. The schedule is definitely something that cappers will adjust for.
In Basketball, sometimes you will catch a team that played less than 2 days before and could be tired while the other team is rested. In football, the Thursday night and Monday night games either give teams a shortened week or extra rest. In some sports, the rest may be so long that teams could come in rusty and it is always good to fade them in the first half. Travel is also very important. Cappers generally adjust anywhere from 0 to 3 points on the power rating depending on the team and the schedule spot.
Lastly, there is the look ahead and the letdown spots to factor in. The good handicapper would look to bet the dog in this spot. Finally, we need to look at trends. Maybe a quarterback has a history in playing bad in cold weather.
Maybe there is a stadium that favors unders. Maybe there is a coach that always gets the best of a good team. Trends are hard to assign an actual number to but something you should at least pay close attention to. It is always best to ask yourself why when noticing a trend so that you can learn from it in the future.
The last way that I am going to discuss some handicapping techniques is the use of algorithms to come up with a final score. An algorithm pronounced AL-go-rith-um is a procedure or formula for solving a problem, based on conducting a sequence of specified actions. An everyday example of an algorithm is a cooking recipe. The ingredients are the data and the mixing with the baking is the mathematics.
An algorithm is really nothing more than a function with changing variables. Being that the match-ups and the stats differ from week to week, you will always get different variables and predictive values for the final score. Some of the stats used in the NFL are Yards per game on offense and defense, yards per point, penalty yards and more. For basketball, some of the stats are team efficiencies on offense and defense and pace of play. I certainly like to use algorithms for totals predictions due to the use of pure numbers and statistics.
I use algorithms for football and basketball, but I do rely a lot more on individual power ratings especially for betting ATS against the spread. Remember when I said that those casinos didn't build themselves? It takes lots of people losing a lot of money to do this and as smart players, it is our job to beat these books. Don't bet on pure emotion and do not get sucked into stupid plays that favor the sportsbooks. Many people like to play parlays because it is very fun to watch their money multiply by winning multiple bets.
Betting a 3 game parlay pays in most books and people love to get that fat return. The problem with is that it isn't actually a good payout for what they are risking. Let's look at the math. It is basically the same chances of flipping a coin three times in a row getting and heads every single time. Minus out your unit that you would be paid back 1 that you would make back and you are at 7.
This means you should be paid at to accomplish this feat. Now don't get me wrong, parlays are FUN and even I play them from time to time such as during the NCAA tournament and college bowl games, but I do not bet as much as I bet a normal game and I only use a separate amount of additional discretionary income fun money. Playing parlays to me is kinda like playing the power ball and should not be done often. Future bets, on the other hand, can be extremely profitable if properly played.
I have seen books favoring a team at to win the national championship while others have it at Remember to shop these books and read up on them before you make your plays. What I love about division, conference and championship futures bets, is that if you feel you know something more than the books and are correct, you can accomplish a massive payout.
Another thing that I love about futures is the ability to hedge out of them. Anyone with a Michigan future ticket in the NCAA Men's basketball championship would have been smart to bet Villanova at 15 times the amount of their Michigan play ;-.
I also like to play season win totals. The sportsbooks will predict a total number of wins that a team will have for the season and we can either agree by not placing a bet or bet over or under in that total.
Playing a season win total spreads out the variance throughout a whole season rather than one game. When Clemson had that bad loss against Syracuse in , they still went in the ACC and cashed some nice over Always remember to check the strength of schedule when researching these plays. The downside to betting futures and season win totals is that the sportsbooks hold on to your money for the full season without paying interest.
If you are willing to make the investment, then make sure you are okay with them holding your money. Well that really depends on what kind of a situation you are in, but the general answer is no. In football, buying random points on or off of non-key numbers cost about 10 cents, but when you buy on or off of key numbers it can be as high as 25 cents such as the 3 and the 7.
We have to start at Looking at my chart from above, we can see that going from Take 4. So this would be meaning that it is worth 24 cents minus to buy a half point to Sportsbooks charge 25 cents for this move so you can see it is just barely not worth it to make this individual play. If you take the sample NFL chart from Sports Insights above you can get close to the same number by taking almost half of the Being that is just a sample, I am going to stick with the chart. The few times that I can find it worth it to buy a half point off of a key number is if you are trying to middle when the math works out for you.
I personally would rather just try and shop for a better number using multiple books from the information that you can get from reading reviews. Another important thing to keep in mind is that college football has the same key numbers, but they are less impactful than the NFL because the variance in the spreads and final scores can range much farther making the standard deviation of the final scores much larger. Any questions??? Use multiple books people!
Using multiple books allows for the best lines on each game! Timing is huge when it comes to sports betting and betting stale lines will not lead to success. When you get good at this you can actually start to be able to predict the line moves and be a lot more strategic in your plays. Best practices are to make your bets right when the lines come out as well as right before the games start.
Let's not kid ourselves here, sportsbooks are wrong coming out with a line plenty of times just like we all differ in our numbers and power ratings. These books have to put lots of lines on many sports out every day while we can stay focused on one sport and even one conference. By placing your bets right when the lines come out, you have the early advantage to find weaknesses in the numbers and hit them before people catch on forcing the lines to move. Sportsbooks do not raise the limits into the figure range until the middle or end of the week for football.
Even books know that they can leave themselves exposed to high limit openers. They instead will let the sharper lower limit players make plays early thus creating more of an honest line due to the movement for the middle of the week.
Mid-week is the time that you do not want to make your bets because in general, the lines have been adjusted correctly for the most part maybe a few might be missed. The next wait is for the general public to make their plays up to minutes to hours before the game to adjust the next line correction and hopefully open up some more plays for you to cash in on. At this point, the sportsbooks do not even necessarily care if they are wrong on the numbers because they are mainly trying to just balance their action to profit on both sides of the lines.
You can in most cases find some good numbers that were not there before by just waiting it out thus giving you an edge based on your expected values derived from the estimated odds in your power ratings. This is why being thorough and researching offers is a must as bonuses are meant to be advantageous. If your goal is to be successful in the world of sports betting, you should not only know the fundamentals.
This is not to say that the basics are not important, they are, however, they are not all you should be informed about when it comes to sports betting. To increase the likelihood of becoming a successful bettor you need to be able to deal with the topic, dealing with new bet variants, guarantees, pursuing developments, etc. The most important part of betting is the probability of success. The entire process of sports betting involves numerous possibilities that are expressed by betting odds.
New users tend to only see the multiplier for their potential win in the odds, whereas players that are more advanced see a probability that the betting provider associates with the particular betting event. The trick here is to learn how a quota increases and what the increase means for you. What are the correct quotas? Successful bettors often find themselves successful due to being in possession of an advantage over the bookmaker — advanced knowledge.
This means that you would have access to recent news regarding aspects like an important player or how a team is looking, basically information that pertains to the result of the game. Such pieces of information have not been taken into consideration by the betting provider when making the quota.
If you have made a bet based on the gathering of such information, this would be known as a value bet. The reading and researching news regarding the sport is where the value comes in. Out of the most common three betting types: system bets , accumulator bets , and single bets , the most popular bet is a single bet. With the popularity of accumulator bets dependant on the player, most experienced bettors will agree that system bets are not as coveted.
For this reason, single bets are more commonly used. It may take a little luck and extensive knowledge, but these bets tend to be worth it. When it comes to live betting strategy , live bets often offer exciting opportunities which make considering partaking in them a good idea. If you are someone that can read a game well and have an idea of which way the game will go, then this is the kind of betting for you.
Live bets allow the user to react immediately to current events. If you turn out to be good at predicting the outcomes of live games, then you will find great success. However, be warned that this is a challenging strategy to pick up. Just like in other industries, time is money in the world of betting. This is why we have crafted this list to help you make well-researched decisions that decrease the chances of time-consuming mistakes. Besides knowing the value of your time, another time-sensitive aspect of sports betting is when the betting odds become available on the market.
The sooner you jump on the more attractive bets , the better. If you miss your window, these bets could already be settled. With this in mind, be aware that early bets hold their own risks at the same time. For instance, if a player injury occurs after you have made your bet, the outcome of the game, as well as, the value of your research could be affected.
A good tip is to be content with even the smallest of profits. This is a simple thing to remember as no matter how small — a profit is still a profit. A good way to start if you are new to the world of gambling is to have more than one small wager on different games, this may not make you rich, but you will learn to get a feel of how things are done, as well as, learn a few lessons without risking large amounts of money.
When it comes to sports betting, it is important to know that fast results often lead to fast losses. If you are looking for a get rich quick scheme, this is not it. If you are willing to have patience and learn the tips of the trade, then you are more likely to see a profit. Quick bets are often reckless bets, keep your head clear and you will avoid a lot of mistakes. A player needs to be able to be adept when it comes to betting money management.
There are many different types of bettors out there with different interests and different formulas of success, however, something that every decent player has in common is the ability to manage their funds. A system that works is one that maximises profits and minimises losses.
Tying in with the point on money management, users need to have a set betting capital before spending any money. Your starting capital does not need to be too modest, the key is budgeting and making the right calls to keep you in the game for longer. You will not see much success if you blow half of your capital on one bet.
Any successful bettor knows that they need to keep a clear head. These wagers are typically baseless with no research behind them which means that they inevitably fail. This is why a good rule to follow is to only make logical bets. Sports betting is a professional activity, there is not much fun to be had until you know what you are doing. This is because sports betting involves a lot of analysing and researching games and statistics.
An experienced bettor also knows to document all decisions and bets. This is mostly to see where bets went wrong or right. Even going back months, these records are a good way for you to keep track of betting patterns and results. You can also keep track of your profits this way, where you can link winnings to the ideas and research that led to you placing the successful wager. Are betting tipsters good? The bigger the network, the more good tips you can get your hands on.
Due to the increasing popularity of the sports betting world, there has been an increase in user contact. This is positive in a number of ways, as mentioned you will be able to share tricks of the trade, as well as, gain knowledge from more experienced bettors.
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