Rick Steel's betting tips

The Grapevine will contain my week-to-week sports betting analysis on the sports we handicap and the sports betting industry.

Just the facts

This is not meant to be a comprehensive list. Some are obvious some not so much.

• There is no such thing as a sure thing for any one particular sporting event. You may have many many compelling reasons to bet a particular side but do not allow that to force you away from proper money management principles.

Define Insanity

I am sure most of you have heard the phrase the definition of insanity is doing the same things over and over again and expecting different results.

 So how does this relate to sports betting? Well as I have mentioned often it is very important to evaluate as objectively as possible your bets after the fact.

Focus on the process

As regular readers of my grapevine have heard before sports handicapping is so much more than number crunching to spit out value. When you analyze the box scores the stats the current form of teams constantly ask yourself:

What is real an emerging pattern that will likely continue? Conversely what is not real and is a pattern that will regress to the mean?

Bettors make the big mistake of believing these patterns will continue because it is the easy lazy way of thinking. Something to grab onto a security blanket too place a bet.

Why be a Sports Handicapper?

These are three 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 aptitude 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 on your skill and hard work.

My personal challenge to profitability What about you?

Regardless if you participate in this business full or part time if you take this endeavor seriously PATIENCE must be incorporated into your personality.

When I got involved in sports betting 25+ years ago I had zero patience in my life period. I was always looking for the big score for instant gratification. This issue was my greatest challenge in order for me to be successful at sports betting. I wanted to do this full time right away but looking back I had no clue.

Avoid these common mistakes

1) Being Under Capitalized. Do not be disillusioned to think you can make a full time living on a minimal bankroll.

 2) Not having enough sports book accounts funded whereby you are not getting the best number available. Betting -1.20 when -1.14 is available is just burning money.

 3) Not following proper money management procedures. There is no such thing as a lock in this business. However risking more than 2% of your bankroll on a game will guarantee you will not be around long term.

Key skills to be a successful sports bettor

There was a recent survey on the above question. Below are the most common responses. I have added my opinion as well. They are in no particular order. This is not meant to be an all-encompassing list. If you are unsure about any of these points or have additional ones you would like me to add by all means contact me.

Discipline relating to selection of games, money management, not chasing lines or losses.

Ability to make decisions with incomplete information.

Timing the market knowing when to bet almost as important as which team to bet.

Sports betting Nuggets

As we continue to wait out the return of sports betting below is more betting advice to add to the library.  

Do not be worried about betting against public opinion. Look for over and under reactions to recent games. Be a contrarian in this business that is where you find the value and the money.

Do not play catch up “chasing” by increasing your wagers when losing.

What you save is what you earn. Shop! Shop! Shop! Have a minimum of 3 sports book accounts to ensure you get the best lines possible regardless of the size of your bets. Everything is relative.