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Handicapping your Sportsbook with Tips for Winning

Ever wondered why even though you have accounts at a number of different sportsbooks you always seem to be re-upping at the same one?

Well you might want to consider the following. Some books have much 'tighter' lines than others. ie certain books are better at issuing lines that are very close to the final result of the game. This can be particularly true when you break it down into individual sports and bet types.

As handicappers and bettors we can use this kind of information to our advantage.

Why not check it out for a while? Have a look at betting lines at Odds Comparison sites like Don Best, Oddswiz, Tip-ex or Covers and make a note of games when one book is out on it's own and different to the 'consensus' line by a half or even full point. Then check the result of the game and see whether they were right or wrong. After a while I'm sure you will find definite betting line patterns emerge. Some books are very good in hoops and others in football. Some are better at pro than college. Yet others are great for totals rather than sides.

It's also worth noting that the reduced juice books need to be especially tight with their betting line odds since they have a much smaller margin for error.

Why do books do this? Well there are a number of reasons including the following:

  • They have a very strong opinion based on their own numbers that the 'consensus' betting line is wrong so they basically take a position on the game.
  • Very successful bettors and/or syndicates are heavy on one side so they are trying to balance out their action.
  • They are an aggressive sportsbook whose goal is not to make a balanced book, but to win more games than they lose when taking a position.
  • When choosing a sportsbook to 'follow', it's unlikely that a smaller, less successful or new book's betting lines will be as tight as the larger books that have been around for at least a few years.

Once you get some experience in handicapping different sportsbooks I'm sure you will find watching the betting line of several sportbooks will be a very useful tool in your betting armory.

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