Sports Betting and Betting Strategy – Line Shopping
After learning the fundamentals of sports betting, the next step is to try to apply strategies. Numerous books make an effort to explain and develop profitable sports betting strategies. It’s crucial to understand that if there were a winning strategy, everyone would employ it, forcing sportsbooks out of business. There have been effective betting methods, statistical models, and other tools bettors have used to gain an advantage, but sportsbooks have frequently changed their odds to account for them. Professional gamblers looking for advantages and sportsbooks figuring out the edge and adjusting to it are in a constant struggle.
With that warning out of the way, there are a few relatively easy rules to follow when looking for good bets.
Shopping for lines
This is more of a way to ensure you get the best price on a bet than a method for picking winning wagers.
Consider a wager as a doughnut. The doughnut you want costs $1 at the nearby gas station. It costs 89 cents at the nearby convenience store. It costs 79 cents at the supermarket across the street. If everything else were equal, you would purchase the doughnut from the supermarket. The same idea also applies to sports wagers from various online sportsbooks.
It is necessary to do this to search for lines across several sportsbooks, which isn’t always possible but has gotten much simpler with the rise of sports betting apps. The doughnut analogy is very straightforward in everyday life, but let’s consider how it might appear in the context of sports betting.
Let’s say you think the Golden State Warriors will defeat the Phoenix Suns straight up, so you want to wager on them on the money line, which means you win regardless of the outcome. You’ve also decided that you want to win $100 on your wager. The following step is to search various sportsbooks for the best odds.
The Warriors moneyline wager at Sportsbook A is -115, meaning you must wager $115 to win $100. The Warriors are listed at -113 by Sportsbook B, which means you only need to wager $113 to win the same $100. The Warriors are listed at -120 in Sportsbook C, which means you must wager $120 to win $100.
This ought to be as obvious as the situation involving the doughnut. However, you are “buying” a Warriors moneyline wager that will net you $100 in profit rather than a doughnut. If you can access all three sportsbooks, choose Sportsbook B to place your wager.
Sportsbooks purposefully have similar lines because, on the rare occasion that they don’t, savvy bettors will locate the location with the out-of-whack lines and place large bets there. Even so, variety is typically present.