Before success, comes failure. A few years back, before I had the system for picking bets that I have now, my sports book betting career was on a stomach flipping downturn. I was losing more bets than I was winning, and the ones I was winning through pure chance had a payout so marginal I barely made any money on top of the original bet.
But through careful study, educating myself in the art of odds, the different types of bet, point spreads, money lines, favourites, underdogs, handicapping and all the rest, I managed to level out that downturn, and eventually it became an upturn as my sports book betting moved slowly into profitability.
So what’s the secret? Well, there’s a few foundational rules that you should base your sports book betting decisions on.
#1 – Patience. You can’t, and won’t win every game you bet on. A 100% win-rate is obviously the holy grail of sports bettors, but let’s face the truth and come to terms with the fact it won’t happen. Sports book betting is about juggling the chance of loss with the odds of the payout, and that takes time to master.
Sports book betting is like tournament poker, it’s all about the long game. You might lose one or two bets, but as long as the overall trend is up, you’re winning. So don’t be disappointed if you lose a few bets, and don’t let that affect your decision making. Be patient, diligent and make informed bets according to your system, and the wins will come on their own.
#2 – Value. Your sports book bets should always be good value, based on what you think the odds of the outcome are. For example, if you think the odds of a team winning are 4:1, you shouldn’t bet on odds any less than that or you’re losing value. (This is also a key part of poker… funny how these similarities crop up, isn’t it?)
Before you look around for odds and start wagering with the sports books, decide on what value you’re looking for and only bet when you find it. A lot of people think sports book betting is simply about picking winniners, but in fact getting good value is something that takes a long time to master.
#3 – Easy Pickings. In in doubt, go for the favourite. They’re the favourite for a reason: because they’re more likely to win. While the payouts are lower (because there’s less risk), betting on the favourites can help you maintain a more stable win-rate and boost your overall season performance. Don’t get too carried away though, favourites can be beaten and won’t always win. Be sure to do your due diligence on the game before you place the bet at your sports book.