Sports betting – Moneyball or instinct?

stacks of 100 bills

If you love your sport, the chances are that you also enjoy the odd wager here and there; this adds a little excitement to games you may not otherwise hugely care about.

Interestingly, the chances are also that you’ve generally lost money in this endeavor over the years, despite having the odd big win here and there. This is the pattern most sports fans see across different sports over the history of their gambling activity over a number of years. The bookies aren’t in business to give away free cash and their careful mark-up of the odds is generally designed to put you in a slightly disadvantageous position, statistically speaking, before the game or race etc., gets underway.

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World Cup remains hard to predict

It’s been a wild World Cup so far, and if you’ve been betting the underdogs you’re a happy guy right now. Traditional powers like Spain were booted, and Italy got screwed on a lame red card and a biting incident that was missed by the officials, highlighting just how difficult it has been to predict the outcome.

So keep that in mind when you’re about to bet on sports at www.williamhill.com. Sure, some traditional powers are winning as well, as Argentina looks pretty damn good with Messi pumping in goals. Brazil keeps winning, but they’ve looked pretty mediocre so far. Still, if you predicted a Brazil/Argentina final things are shaping up that way even with all the upsets so far.

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What has been your best bet?

With March Madness in full swing, many people have been geared up to fill out their brackets, while others are putting bets on multiple games. Events like this and the Super Bowl certainly raise the excitement level, and it gets many of us thinking about our best bets over the years.

One of my all-time best bets involved the Super Bowl matchup pitting the undefeated New England Patriots vs the New York Giants following the 2007 NFL Season. The Patriots looked unbeatable, yet there was something about the New York Giants that made them the perfect matchup for the high-flying Pats – their pass rush! Going into the game, some experts were pointing out that if the Giants front four could pressure Tom Brady without resorting to blitzes, then the Giants had a real chance to win the game, let alone cover the point spread. With that in mind, instead of taking the points and the Giants, I decided to go with the money line on the Giants to win outright, which gave me a much better payout given that the Pats were big favorites. The Giants won of course 17-14, as their defense got a pass rush and slowed down that many thought was an unstoppable offense. The win was even sweeter several months later when I ran into one of the most notorious gamblers – Pete Rose – who was complainign that there was no way the Patriots should have lost that game. He called the money line bet stupid, but he didn’t have much of an answer when I simply pointed out that it was a winning bet.

As for March Madness, my favorite bet involved taking Kentucky over Duke in 1992 even though I wanted Duke to win. Christian Laettner famously won that game on the incredible shot in overtime, but I already had my bet won as I was getting plenty of points with Kentucky. So I got to celebrate that incredible shot watching the game at Caesar’s Palace, while also celebrating a winning bet.

You can check out these top 5 best bets for other great examples and follow #bgoBestBets on Twitter as well.

  

Gearing up for the Super Bowl matchup

Now that all of the drama about the weather is subsiding a bit, the betting frenzy around the Super Bowl can focus more on the teams and the game. The video above gives some perspective on how Las Vegas handles the biggest betting event of the year and how professional betters deal with the game. The key is grinding it out over time.

THis of course has nothing to do with how casual betters will approach the game, where it’s much more about fun. Of course there are plenty of serious and smart sports betters on this game, and many of them will be reaserching everything about the matchups and checking out Top Betting Reviews on where to handle their action. They probably won’t mess around with the crazy prop bets.

As for the game, this matchup offers plenty for betters to ponder. With the weather looking mild, it appears that Seattle will have to rely on their own abilities to stop Peyton Manning and Denver’s high octane offense. But we’ve seen that happen in Super Bowls before, with high scoring passing teams like Tom Brady’s Patriots and Jim Kelly’s Bills. The Patriots were pummeled with a real pass rush. The Bills seemed to be addicted to the pass and wouldn’t let their running game get going.

This time we have Seattle’s excellent secondary which seems to smother wide receivers. The key is whether they can do this to the Broncos. The problem is that Peyton Manning understands how to exploit what a defense is doing, and here he has two weeks to prepare.

Of course, we also have the Seattle offense to consider. Can they run on the Broncos? If not, can Russell Wilson win this game for them? Wilson is the wild car here. He’s not nearly as good as some analysts suggest, but he’s capable of making a big play with his legs and his arm.

Still, while a close game is probably in the cards, it will be interesting to see how Seattle responds if Denver jumps to a quick lead.

  

Old versus new in the Super Bowl

The matchup is set with the Denver Broncos facing off against the Seattle Seahawks in the 2014 Super Bowl which will be the first to be played outside in a northern city. It will likely be a very evenly matched game between two very different football teams led by very different quarterbacks. With such a matchup we can all expect the Super Bowl online betting to be quite brisk. As soon as the two teams were in place there was already a flurry of activity as most sportsbooks had Seattle listed as a slight favorite, but that changed quickly as money poored in on the Broncos. Now were see Denver as a one point or 1.5 point favorite on many sportsbooks, and we can probably expect more volatility.

One factor that will probably move the line with be the weather. With Peyton Manning leading Denver’s traditional yet explosive air attack, we can expct more money to flow to the Broncos if we see mild conditions for the game, or at least little wind and snow. But if the weather is bad, than the conventional wisdom has that favoring the Seahawks who rely more on the running game as opposed to Russell Wislon. Also, while Wislon is not particularly effective in the pocket, he is great at improvising and bad weather might actually help his game.

The matchup between the quarterbacks will be the most intriguing and that goes far beyond the weather. Peyton Manning represents the kind of quarterback that has been winning championships in the NFL throughout its history. Manning beats you by throwing from the pocket. His mobility isn’t that great though he’s good at navigating around a pass rush and throwing under pressure. Russell Wilson on the other hand is one of the new mobile quarterbacks who sometimes relies on the read option to be effective. The Seahawks have been limiting the number of times he runs, as it’s obviously a huge risk that he’ll get injured, but he’s also been less effective lately. Without the running threat teams are daring Wilson to throw the ball. But he’s certainly capable of making big plays, and if he hits on some then Seattle will be in a good position.

It should be a great game!

  

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