Of course, as in any game of chance, there is variability in the actual results and just because you have won 55% in the past and expect to win 55% in the future doesn’t mean that you’re going to win 55% this upcoming season. There is variance in sports betting, as there is in most investments, and I calculate the standard deviation to figure out how much of my bankroll I can safely wager on each game during the season to accommodate potential negative swings while having very little chance of exhausting my bankroll. I have extensively quantified the variance that exists in sports betting, and use mathematical formulas to dictate the exact optimal amount to invest so as to maximize the ratio of profits to variance.
Reason number two that the bookie wins: He “charges” people to bet. The odds that he offers don’t add up to an implied probability of 100%, the remainder being potential profit for the bookie (known as the “vig” in the US). Depending on the event he might be charging a couple of percentage points (so on average he’ll make $2 for each $100 bet) to a couple of hundred percentage points (so on average he’ll make $200 for each $100 bet). It depends on his certainty around his estimate, how dodgy he is, how dumb he thinks his punters are, how much competition he has, and so on.
When you combine the number of opportunities to make good bets with the fact that baseball is mostly a moneyline betting sports, thanks to its low-scoring games, the odds for the bettor only increase. Betting against spreads is much harder to predict and analyze for value, but choosing a winner is more straightforward, and it’s easier to gain an edge and make solid bets.
The third advantage is perhaps not as significant as the previous two, but it’s an advantage nonetheless. When betting on several sports, you ideally need a pretty sizable budget. This is simply because you’re likely to be placing more wagers. You can get away with a much smaller budget when betting on just one sport though. Plus, you can be more aggressive with that budget, as the quality of your wagers will typically be higher. This can potentially increase the rate at which you win money.
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Total O/U is the amount won on OVER or UNDER bets. When it comes to the Premier League, any factor that can influence the game can help you decide if you want to bet the OVER or the UNDER. These factors include how capable each club is on offense and defense, weather conditions (wind being especially influential since it can change how far/fast the ball travels when kicked), and injuries sustained before the match (real injuries, not the flopping around that is done in-game when a cleat grazes a player’s shin so slightly that the only thing you can do is roll your eyes at the telly). For example, if Man United’s goalkeeper suffers an injury to his hand and cannot play in their matchup against Brighton, you should take that into consideration when making your totals bet. You don’t know if their secondary netminder is going to let in more goals or play better against Brighton then their primary goalie.