Essence of Sports Handicapping

These are the primary reasons I am a sports handicapper:

  1. Freedom especially with today’s technology. No boss no employees no huge capital investment.
  2. I love watching sports since I was a kid. The pure competition of humans battling and the sense of not knowing the outcome.
  3. I have the skill for numbers and how to analyze them which comes naturally to me based on my background and education.
  4. Get paid what your worth based your skill and hard work.

There is nothing that I can compare sports handicapping to that presents the intellectual challenge and mental stimulation that this business provides.

Despite the rise in popularity of analytics (which does help) handicapping is NOT some stats and trends that you use for your “winning selections” The line makers are far too sharp to let us win that way.

When I make a bet it is based on a number of significant reasons why this side is the right side and further confirmed that the reasons are NOT already encompassed in the line. I research for trends, stats, situations, psychological factors that have relevancy that I can directly connect some logic for this particular match-up.

You cannot fully teach someone sports handicapping; like most endeavors you learn the most by doing. What I can teach is the fundamentals, how to avoid the common mistakes and put you on the right path. Instinct also plays a key role for the handicapper. Not guessing not taking a shot but intuition based on years of experience.

Everybody has the same data at their disposal these days’ lots and lots of information. It is absolutely useless to come up with 100 reasons to bet one side and 101 reasons to bet the other side. Learn how to filter the information into something that makes sense for you within the context of your game analysis. It should also include scheduling, situations, emotions, motivations etc.

Handicapping a game is a very detailed specific discipline. Do not get swayed by talking heads on TV, your friends, false hype, newspapers, social media etc. The information you filter must be objective and generally beat writers are your best source for local information. When possible where there is hype on a particular team that hype moves the markets which in turn moves the lines to a point where value can be acquired from the opposite side of the hype. Being a contrarian in this business is very helpful.

Remember all of the above is to stress that your job is to find weakness in the line in order to place a bet. No weakness in the line means no value means no bet. Never give up what our major advantage is as a sports bettor. The sports books post lines on all games we get to cherry pick and bet only the games we find value. As a sports handicapper I am always reading between the lines looking for value and edges.