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“The chorus of human stories we present in ‘Action’ will resonate far beyond the world of sports and gambling,” director Luke Korem says. “This is a subculture that reflects to an extreme the risk, reward, and uncertainty we find in our everyday lives. I’m thrilled that Showtime is allowing us to capture these stories at such a unique moment in history.”
Avoid falling into “square” tendencies such as buying favorites down or underdogs up. For example, some bettors always feel the need to buy an NFL favorite of -3.5 down to -2.5. The sportsbooks are smart enough to charge more juice to do this, mathematically making it a bad strategy. The same goes with buying an NFL underdog from +2.5 to +3.5 for example. In 99% of cases I would advise against it. Check out the video I made below about buying points on NFL underdogs.
Ray’s background in engineering, along with his meticulous nature and fascination with numbers, parlay into his ability to analyze data; keep records; notice emerging trends; and find new handicapping angles and figures. While specializing in thoroughbred racing, Ray also handicaps harness racing, Quarter Horse racing, baseball, football, hockey, and has been rumored to have calculated the speed and pace ratings on two squirrels running through his backyard.
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Sports betting appeals to the smart bettor because it does not have a fixed house edge for the casinos. Sports betting requires more skill than luck and is similar to live poker. You do not win every time but the skilled handicapper has a huge advantage over the recreational bettor. How sports betting can be a profitable investment involves an understanding of numbers, odds and sports.
Other popular sports for betting that are NOT on this list include baseball, darts, rugby and horse racing. We didn’t include baseball because that doesn’t get a lot of betting attention outside of the United States. Darts doesn’t get much attention outside of the United Kingdom, and rugby is only popular in a few countries. Horse racing DOES get worldwide attention, but horse racing betting is typically categorized as its own unique form of gambling.
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.
There are 68 teams that participate in March Madness, and there’s a whole lot of betting that includes bracket betting, standard bets, in-play betting, and lots of props. We’ve included the schedule, which starts with Selection Sunday on March 11 and end with the final game on April 2. That just so happens to be right around the same time the MLB tosses out its opening day pitches.
Often, a flurry of bills will pass when the urgency of a legislative session’s end presses the point for lawmakers. As it relates to sports betting, the most recent example just unfolded in Michigan. Wolverine State legislators overwhelmingly approved House Bill 4926, the Lawful Internet Gaming Act, in the wee hours of Dec. 21. The legislation passed the state’s Senate by a 33-5 margin and then cleared the hurdle in the House, 71-35. The bill now sits on Gov. Rick Snyder’s desk for signature.
While the odds makers do to try approximate the median margin of victory between two teams, they also try to reduce their exposure to risk by setting lines such that the public money will fall evenly on both sides of a game, so that they can offset the bets against each other and earn a profit on the juice (cut of winnings taken by the house, explained below) without exposing themselves to large potential losses. Thus, odds makers are often in the business of gauging public perception rather than team performance, and therefore the betting public actually sets the line. In more recent years, the betting public has had less influence on the odds than professional betting syndicates or sharp money has had, but there is still value to be found – although in different ways than in previous decades. If Georgia is 4 points better than Georgia Tech according to my advanced metrics and analysis, but the aggregate public perception is that Georgia is 7 points better than Georgia Tech, then the posted point spread is likely to be closer to 6 or 7 points (public perception) than it will be to 4 points (the realistic difference between the teams). This makes my job as a professional handicapper much less daunting; not only can I exploit lines where the odds makers are off, but I can also exploit the uniformed opinions of the general betting public, and more recently take advantage of betting syndicates and ‘quants’ that rely more and more on algorithms but can overlook some of the hidden value in changes in team personnel or lineups and in the particular match up between two teams.
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“The world of sports gambling has fascinated Hollywood for decades, but never before has a documentary captured the essence of the industry at such a pivotal period,” Showtime Sports and Event Programming President Stephen Espinoza said. “Through the lens of industry professionals and real-life gamblers within every virtual layer of the business – both legal and illegal – ‘Action’ delivers a one-of-a-kind look as sports gambling enters a brave new world.”
Finding that specialty is easier than it is with other sports as well. Being a relatively new area of sports betting, esports books are often only marginally better, if not worse, than the smart bettor at calculating the odds for events. Gaining this strategic edge gives you the power you need to find the most valuable bets among the sportsbooks who might have less of a grasp of the odds when it comes to esports.
If boxing was a chess tournament, Mikey Garcia would be the grandmaster. He's never fought at 147lbs before and he's only had two fights at 140lb. Hell, just eight fights ago he was fighting for the featherweight title! Yet of all the fights on offer for him at lightweight and super-lightweight (most notably Lomachenko), Mikey decided to jump up two weight divisions to challenge one of the most feared punchers in the sport today, and the man many consider to be the best welterweight on the planet.
Most bettors place lots of wagers because they think it will improve their chances of making money. We can see the logic in thinking this way, but the opposite is actually true. It’s the QUALITY of our wagers that improves our chances of making money, not the quantity of them. And the more wagers we place, the less likely we are to place good wagers.
Like every successful bettor, we’re looking for inefficiencies in betting markets which pop up regularly with the sheer volume of games being played day in day out. Niels, our model maker, first identifies value bets through his xG (expected goals model) then we move on to an in-depth look at some situational statistics plus team news. Once we feel confident that the odds are stacked in our favor, we pull the trigger