When it comes to doing anything well, you have got to do your research, and sports gambling is no different. Yes, you may have been a sports fan your whole life. And yes, you may watch SportsCenter twice a day.
However, doing research for sports betting takes more work than just knowing who won the night before. At the end of the day, this is a monetary investment, and to be successful and actually make money, you’ve got to do the research that informs your wagers.
Here we have four easy ways to do just that.
Know Your Sport
Being a good sports fan is not enough to be a good sports bettor. Sure, you may know a ton of arbitrary facts across all four major sports plus college but that will not make you a successful sports bettor.
When placing a sports wager, you must know that sport from a gambling perspective. Does having general knowledge help? Sure. But to win cash while sports betting is to know the sport you are wagering on.
So, if you have a big day on college football, don’t throw money at a late-night NBA game when you haven’t watched basketball in three years.
Many gamblers just start looking at odds. Odds on sports they know nothing about. This is a rookie mistake, so just stick to what you know.
Multiple Books, Multiple Looks
Beyond knowing the sport you wager on in gambling terms, it is important to know the odds. Of course, wherever you are placing your bet will present you with their odds and point spreads.
However, these odds and point spreads are unique to that particular sportsbook and not necessarily other sportsbooks. To get a truer idea of what the actual odds are and where other gamblers are putting their money, you must check multiple books.
It is fine to only play with one sportsbook, but knowing what other books are offering will only inform your wager. Why is the spread so low here? Why are the odds so high there? Where is the sharp money?
If you can’t answer these questions before placing your wager, you shouldn’t be wagering at all.
The best and most overlooked research you can do as a sports gambler is with the injury report. These reports are required in every sport and every league to be truthful and timely.
The fact of the matter is, if LeBron James is not playing, you want to know. If Justin Verlander is a scratch, you want to know.
Lines are set before these reports come out in every sport and will change immediately after they are released. Checking the injury report is the simplest way to research a wager and must be done before any wager is placed.
When it comes to all sports, some teams just match up better than others. Studying a team’s head-to-head record is very significant to a wager.
Let’s say the Chicago Bulls have won 10 in a row and are playing the Milwaukee Bucks, losers of four in a row. However, the Bucks have already beat the Bulls twice this year.
What’s more important? The recent record or the head-to-head record? Bad sports gamblers think it’s the former, while smart gamblers know it’s the latter.
Always research these records before going heavy on the hot team. Sometimes a pitcher just has a team’s number. Sometimes a basketball team just can’t beat another.
Some teams just match up better against one team than they do with others. The only way to know that is to research the head-to-head records.