Monday, May 18, 2009

The Art Of The Line

Betting on sports is becoming more and more popular by the day. In the old days, you either had to go to Vegas, or have your own bookie, for some side action. Now you see the odds of the games on the bottom scroll of ESPN. As was noted the other day, Delaware just made it legal to bet on sports. So with the added popularity comes more acceptance! You no longer need to keep it quiet that you have action riding on a late night game.

I bring this up for one simple reason. To be successful in life, you always need to be thinking one step ahead. With regards to sportsbetting, you need to clearly identify WHY you are doing it. To make money?? For pure enjoyment??? An addict??? This might sound rather funny or dumb, but it's the first step in becoming successful. If you answered to MAKE MONEY, then keep reading, as the rest of this article is for you.

Every deal and every sale that's made in this world has a price. A price between at least two people, that is agreed upon by both parties. Betting on sports gives you the opportunity to bet what oddsmakers set the line of the event on. Before you just start betting, it's vitally important that you understand what factors were considered in the oddsmaker making the line that they did.

Bet On The NBA Playoffs

What better example to use then TODAY! There was a full card of Major League Baseball, and even some playoff NHL Hockey. However, there were also two Game 7's in the National Basketball Association. It's no secret that these games had the most bets and money placed on them out of all games on todays betting card. The first game of the day had the Lakers hosting the Rockets. Tons of money was being bet on the Lakers (no surprise there as they are traditionally one of the two biggest bet NBA teams) compared to the money coming in on the Rockets. Oddsmakers set this line at -12, yet at game time this line was up to -13.5 in most places.

It's vitally important that you understand why oddsmakers were raising this line so close to game time. Vegas ultimately wants the same percentage of money on BOTH teams. They then win either way because they collect the amount it costs just to make the wager, otherwise known as JUICE. Vegas only loses when there is only heavy action on one side, and that side ends up covering the spread. More often that not, oddsmakers will move the betting line with the way the public money is going. That's how they get people to then move off one team, and in fact, bet the other team. In this specific case, no matter how much the oddsmakers were raising this Laker line, the public was still betting the Lakers.

We all saw the Lakers end up winning this game by 19 points. Two things happened after this game went final. The first thing being that the PUBLIC was quite happy, since the majority of them had just won their bet. Second, Vegas and it's oddsmakers took one on the chin, as they ended up losing money on this game. They still had about 2 hours to try to make amends for their losses in the first game. This is where it gets interesting.....

See Our Sports Betting Definitions

Oddsmakers had originally made the Celtics 1 point favorites once the Magic had won Game 6. Quickly, the betting public was all over the Boston Celtics. They were going into Game 7 at home, and the public was biting on all the SportsCenter statistics showing how great the Celtics are in Game 7's, and their impressive numbers when ahead in a series. The oddsmakers took note, and raised this line all the way up to -3. So what happened in the last half hour prior to the game???? The line went DOWN!!!! The line went down despite over 81% of the total amount of money bet on this game coming in on the Celtics. Why would the line drop???? You must keep asking yourself this question to truly understand the art of sportsbetting.

I started this article asking you why you bet on sports. It's imperative to truly be able to understand LINE MOVEMENT. This is my first article of many here, and I think this is arguably the most important factor in being successful in sportsbetting, besides money management. This line went down for a reason. Either HUGE money came in late on the Magic, or the oddsmakers were on to something more. Ever heard of a trap????? This was a classic example of exactly that. Take a look back and realize the popularity of this game. Take a look back and realize it was the last possible game to bet on for the week. Look at the big picture, and realize what Vegas and oddsmakers were trying to do!



We all know the Magic ended up crushing the Celtics on the road in Game 7. More importantly, Vegas and its crew got their money back and some. Just another trap game to end the week!

In closing, understanding the making of the line and following it up till gametime is a key factor in being successful in sportsbetting. This is a marathon, not a sprint. It's important to keep track of these numbers and statistics. I personally track them all day long, every single day. If you already watch line movement and track it, then you already know how vital a tool it is in your bankroll. If you are just now beginning, take it seriously and put in the time. There aren't many guarantees in sporstbetting, but I can guarantee you that your bankroll will grow learning this skill!

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