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The Fallacy of Picking 'Winners' (Secrets Your Bookmaker Does Not Want You to Know)

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  • The Fallacy of Picking 'Winners' (Secrets Your Bookmaker Does Not Want You to Know)

    Have you ever wondered why most sports bettors lose and just about any offshore sportsbook you can name continues to thrive? Are you one of those people who have never been able to win at any consistent rate betting on sports? Have you concluded through your own reasoning or experience the only way to not lose is not to bet at all? Are you devoting 24 hours of your life into tiresome methods which require huge capital like scalping, middling, steam chasing and/or trying to keep up with so called ‘wiseguy’ plays, all because you’ve given up your own methods altogether?

    If you answered yes to any or all of the above, this post will be a real eye opener setting you on course to achieving your ultimate dream – being a winner wagering on sports. A dream I’m sure you now believe is impossible. Believe me it most certainly is not.

    I have been in the sports betting business for close to 20 years. I do not keep a profile in any forums, nor am I part of any offshore sports book or syndicate, so you probably have never heard of me. Until now. I am what I am -- a professional sports bettor with a unique perspective and understanding how the industry operates.

    If you’re tired of reading about the same rehashed so called fundamentals of ‘handicapping” and you’re ready and willing to listen to a fresh approach, the information you are about to learn may just be what you’ve been looking for.

    Let us begin with the basics.

    It seems so easy a concept to win betting sports. Pick the correct side from a selection of two teams and cash your ticket. I am convinced this simplistic aphrodisiac is what draws so many sports fans to virtually open their wallets to the multi million dollar offshore sportsbooks time and time again. Just about every bettor’s first instincts begins with this simple concept of picking the 'winner' and from there the journey begins, usually downhill.

    It is my estimation most bettors never break the glass ceiling of making money in this industry because of this flawed mindset. One which takes over the psyche of all sports bettors completely skewing their perception. This false perception ultimately becomes the foundation of any strategy they may use in an attempt to realize a profit.

    If you haven’t been able to realize a consistent profit in this field betting sides, totals and props, then you haven’t been able to overcome this original mindset of picking 'winners'. By the time you finish reading this post, you will have a thorough understanding what is required to make money betting on sports.

    So let’s begin our new journey.

    The following statement is a little known fact which will save years of frustration if you believe one who can pick the right team will generate a profit over the long term. Simply this:

    “The events which take place on the field have no correlation with the odds set forth by the linesmaker"

    This is an irrefutable fact of which the majority of people who bet sports are unaware. Yes it’s true.

    It’s not about how often one can pick the 'winner' which will be the root cause of realizing a profit wagering sports. It is the ability or lack thereof to read and gauge the price (odds) set forth by the oddsmaker which determines success or failure. If you’re a veteran of this game you know the odds are calculated to satisfy a bettor’s perceptions and their sense of fairness. It is the collective public perception which controls the odds. Sports betting is a market, plain and simple, not unlike the stock or commodities exchanges. If you’re serious about winning, then give up looking for the strengths and weaknesses in the teams you are wagering, and devote your creativity and time focusing on looking for strengths and weaknesses in the odds themselves. It really is that simple.

    Simple yet far from easy.

    In order to win at sports betting one must find mathematical value in the line. If you are able to locate value you will make a profit. If you are betting on the point spread, value translates into free points on the spread, very much like a teaser but without the added juice. Measuring value found in moneylines such as markets like MLB baseball, or NHL hockey are a little more complex and involve break even charts and so forth. To keep my illustration simple, I will stick to using the spread in outlining the practical definition of value. However, no matter what form of wager you choose to bet, if your strategies don’t include measuring value, I can almost guarantee you will lose until you change your approach.

    Here’s an experiment you may want to try. Take any documented sports bettor with a sample greater than 1000 wagered games. His/her results will be very near 50/50, minus the juice of course. Anyone who wishes to prove this statement wrong (other than those savvy enough who have the ability to measure value) can post their impressive winning rate and show the rest of us otherwise. This experiment clearly accentuates my point earlier about the false perceived correlation between what takes place on the field and the odds set forth my the linesmaker.

    Statistically this further proves them to be completely independent events from one another. I know this may seem shocking but it’s also a very eye opening reality. It is not that most bettors suck at picking the 'winner'. It’s the fact picking the 'winner' has absolutely no related effect to making money betting on sports. You must once and for all let go of this factor if you wish to prosper.

    I can’t be any more blunt or clear.

    Suppose I were to draw a connection between two completely independent events by linking them through a very well detailed convincing argument. Your subjective better judgment may believe it to be true when in fact later it could prove to be the exact opposite. Lawyers do this all the time in courtrooms. Some are good at it. Some are absolute masters. However statisticians or forensic experts are not lawyers. They will need some scientific evidence before they make or break the connection. I strongly recommend your strategy be based on a scientific approach which is statistically solid and duplicable, thereby removing this subjective so called "better judgment" from the equation – the downfall of most sports bettors. Most bettors who bet on sports and lose use a subjective approach. This is also fact.

    Why do most who bet on sports not see these markets for what they are? Could be ego, the desire to win, the huge circus that surrounds any given individual sporting event or all of the above. The speculation circus exists in every form and medium you can imagine -- TV, newspapers, polls, forums, strategy sharing and more. And what about the totally overrated ‘wiseguy’ steam number chasing gurus who pay the equivalent of a monthly mortgage payment for their line services because they also absolutely believe they can somehow have a stake in the outcome or at least follow a leader who does.

    Everyone has an opinion. Everyone wants to believe their opinion will make a difference in the game, no matter how simple or sophisticated. Yet statistics do not support the fact there is a link between picking 'winners' and realizing a profit betting sports. Quite the opposite.

    What I know for certain is this.

    All these opinions and perceptions are collectively forming a market. A market only the most savvy professional sports bettors are able to exploit.

    If you are one of the few sports bettors out there who has the ability to make money betting on sports, you most likely possess the enviable skill of being able to pinpoint value. If you find yourself in the other category of forever being a loser, then you need to change your approach and mindset because right now as you are reading this your offshore bookmaker is slowly bleeding your account with these same value principals and you probably don’t even realize it.

    Let’s suppose I gave you at random 1000 games to wager over the course of a year using the point spread in your newspaper. In doing so, I also selected the outcomes for you – again completely at random. What do you think the results would be?

    If it were strictly wagering between friends, with no juice, you’d break even dollar wise as the results would be 50/50. You may as well have been flipping a coin. You probably think I am annoying for being so obvious noting this fact. Until I point out random coin flipping results are no better (or worse) statistically than any documented sports bettor with a sample of 1000 results or more. That wasn’t so obvious was it?

    Let’s switch gears for a moment. If you were betting those same random games with an offshore sportsbook at the standard bookmaker price of -$110 to win $100 per game, your results in terms of wins and losses would the same -- 50/50 of course. Except for one tiny factor. The bookmaker’s juice would assuredly see to it you were broke. Even with the most conservative money management program, with enough wagers, it is virtually guaranteed the sportsbook will always end up with ALL of your money. If you bet 1-2% of your bankroll it will take a lot longer than if you bet 10% per game, but the outcome will never be in doubt.

    Bankroll, the passage of time and this tiny edge (juice) is something the offshores have in abundance. Your bookmaker doesn’t make a living collecting juice. He does so by eventually getting his hands on your entire bankroll. The juice is the tiny edge which somehow manifests itself into a bankroll eating monster.

    Sportsbooks could never survive if all they earned was “the juice”. This is yet another fallacy of the industry. This notion that bookmakers simply collect their profits from only the juice looks good on a game to game basis. Accounting wise, it even makes sense and seems fair as your bookmaker only earns a tiny commission from each sports betting wager. The reality is bookmakers are not sharing the cumulative effect this tiny edge has on most bettors. Have you ever wondered how it's possible offshore sportsbooks continually are able to give away all this free money with their 10-25% bonus offers staying in business without worry?


    Sportsbooks treat these bonuses no different than Vegas casinos treat comps giving away “free money” to their roulette, craps and blackjack players. Your bookmaker knows he will eventually recoup all his bonus/comps and then some. If these bonus offers were genuine, offshore and Vegas sportsbooks would cease to exist.

    The cumulative effect of using ‘juice’ grinding down most sports bettors is only "Act 1" in your bookmakers’ powerful arsenal. There is a much greater conspiracy ongoing in this industry. I estimate it is probably the most secretive and least discussed.

    Sucker Games:

    Some bettors will call them fixes. They are...sort of. These are games in which linesmakers are aware of the overwhelming favoritism (both in volume and perception) the majority of bettors may have toward a specific team in any given match hence they inflate their numbers accordingly. If the juice is the constant relentless pounding bettors must endure becoming weaker as each day goes by, sucker games are the knockout blow sportsbooks will use every now and then with lethal accuracy. Once they smell an opportunity, there is no stopping them. It's quite a show actually. It most definitely is an acquired taste appreciating the beauty of such a slaughter.

    Mathematically, the helpless opinionated sports bettor doesn’t stand a chance selecting the probable winner before the game even starts. I’ve read posts where some bettors will cry foul as if some bogus pivotal event within the game skewed their result. The reality is the game WAS ‘fixed’, only in a manner most do not understand. It most certainly had nothing to do what took place on the field, rather the odds themselves.

    The huge advantage sportsbooks have in realizing a profit long term gambling themselves is no matter how they fare on an entire card overall, the games with the greatest inflation obviously are the highest bet. So sportsbooks can ‘lose’ 10 games on a card and win the other 5, yet still collect a healthy profit for the day. (They may even have the nerve to tell the world how much money they lost!) Sportsbooks have the advantage of spreading out their exposure waiting in the weeds for the most enticing opportunities. They DO ‘gamble’, let there be no doubt. However they do so by taking unbalanced action on these sucker games giving them a mathematical edge which guarantees a long-term profit. An edge you are about to learn about.

    The bottom line?

    If you don’t know the price you are paying is too high or too low on any given sporting event, your bookmaker will grind away at your bankroll one way or the other until your account is zero. For sports bettors on the bottom of the food chain (the ones we all love to poke fun as being square) this will happen a lot faster. Don’t get too smug about this. The intermediate or advanced level player who uses solid money management strategies will only be able to delay the process, unless they understand how to measure value.

    Those individuals who observe how sports betting markets actually function rather than simply accept the tiresome worn out so called ‘fundamentals’ will agree with everything I am saying. You may even be one of those posters I have read in forums concluding one cannot win at betting sports period. You’re probably one step ahead 98% of the others but you’re still far from where you need to be.

    Keep reading.

    How can we apply these same winning principles the sportsbooks use against us turning the tables in OUR favor?

    Let’s go back to the illustration using the 1000 random results. What if in addition to selecting the results for you, I also gave you 5 free points per wager. In another words if the game had a price of -7, you would get a line of -2 betting the favourite, or if you were wagering the underdog you would be given a line of +12. (The juice per game would still remain the same at -110.)

    What do you think your results would be?

    If I were to give you 5 free points for only one game, it may not make much of a difference. The random nature of any one given sports event is anything but predictable. Using 10 game increments would still be very volatile and inconclusive at best. Using a larger sample of games, such as 500-1000, and it is totally a different story. You may be surprised at the results.

    Without getting technical as you would have to recalculate the exact worth of a point in any given week or day in various sports/markets in order to arrive at a specific number, suffice it to say, an ‘edge’ of 5 points per game would have netted you a win rate easily over 60% with those 1000 results -- quite a contrast from the 50/50 coin flipping performance.

    Of course it goes without saying you would have achieved this 60%+ win rate without any knowledge or involvement in the day to day hype and fluff surrounding each one of those 1000 games.

    Imagine that.

    Complete random generated selections using 5 free points per wager as the ONLY ‘edge’. You wouldn’t have needed to check the injury reports, not the mention just about every useless stat or trend that is out there. No ‘handicapper’ can even begin to dream about that type of win percentage. You now would in effect have turned the tables in your favor giving YOU the edge by repeating the same principles your bookmaker has been using against you.

    They are:

    1) A mathematical edge giving you measurable and duplicable value now tilting the odds in YOUR favor:

    Five free points per wager in your favor is the same principal as the “the juice” being used against all bettors – a mathematical duplicable edge. In theory, eventually you would end up with all of your bookmakers’ money. Wouldn’t that be a nice for a change? In practice, you’d probably get the boot long before you had chance to declare victory as sportsbooks like to change the rules depending on who is playing into their numbers.

    Bookmakers are cut from the same cloth as those who also believe it’s only ‘fair’ booting card counters in casinos. Moreover, they harbor absolutely no guilt manipulating any market to their advantage, often creating artificial markets on live line services playing the honest sports bettor and/or number chaser for a fool. (I could write a book on this subject.)

    2) Betting the required number of games which will ensure your 5 point edge will meet the expected win percentage:

    This is probabilities 101 and the same principle behind sportsbooks cleverly forcing bettors to play through bonus offers 5 times over. Sportsbooks know they have the edge. It’s only a matter of time before they prosper recouping their ‘comps’. However, in order to eliminate the chance of any bettor hitting a short-term luck streak -- God forbid someone would make a profit cashing out early -- they make sure once again the probabilities and mathematics are in their favor virtually guaranteeing they not only recoup their entire bonus they just gift wrapped for their unsuspecting client, but eventually stealing all their post up money in the process. They accomplish this by forcing their customers to play through a large number of games, (the popular term is ‘rollover’) ensuring the -110 juice cycles through working it’s magic.

    Thus, in order to finish the race cycling through all of those 1000 random results with the 5 point edge per game, you would have to make sure you didn’t run out of money halfway, as your journey of individual random and unpredictable sporting events can get rocky. It would most likely feature many good/bad streaks. To succeed you would need a sound money management strategy to go along with this 5 point edge.

    3) Time and patience:

    Day by day you grind away at those 1000 random games with 5 free points as your ONLY edge each individual wager. At the end of this marathon, you’d be left with a very handsome return on your investment and a very admirable 60%+ win rate. Your friendly bookmaker can only hope not too many people are given the same 5 point edge, otherwise he will find himself looking for a new line of work very soon as the entire industry would collapse.

    This is a very basic yet powerful illustration showing you the ONLY way to realize a profit consistently (just like the sportsbooks) over the long term. The bottom line is value. If you can’t measure value (the same effect as receiving those 5 free points on every wager) your bookmaker will grind you down with these same principals taking as much bankroll as you give him. Once you have the ability to accurately measure value over large samples of games, then and only then, can you begin to turn the tables in your favor realizing a profit forever wagering on sporting events.

    The principles are timeless and never change. They were as applicable fifty years ago, as they will be fifty years from now. The question then becomes ‘how’ exactly does one go about finding this value?

    Be completely honest.

    Ask yourself, do you make money betting sports? If you were to pull any random sample of 1000 games you have wagered, what would the win rate be? Try it. The good news is it would be impossible for it to be below the .500 mark because you’d have to be quite skilled in order to...well...suck. The question is would it be .500 or do you think you’d crack the top 2% estimated few who make money in this business?

    Only you can answer that.

    Whatever category you fall into, you now should understand the two main reasons most bettors lose:

    1) The mindset of picking the 'winner' is all wrong and statistically unproven.
    2) The powerful principles working against all bettors sportsbooks benefit from gradually -- without most bettors taking notice.

    You can now begin your new journey with this new found insight turning the tables in your favor, designing your own winning systems around the very powerful and proven principles I have outlined. You now have the ability to start fresh changing your belief structure, ultimately reversing your fortune.

    I have some very good news.

    The idea of being given 5 ‘free’ points with every wager you place from now on is not an abstract wishful thinking theory. In fact, if you’re super lazy and don’t wish to spend the time and effort required to create your own formulas or systems, or you don’t believe you are savvy enough to do so, you will shortly be given an opportunity to follow a proven program which will give you this kind of non fictitious value EVERY wager you place.

    These systems are timeless, objective, and duplicable wagering close to 2000 games (yes I said two-thousand games) a year crossing over many different markets/sports -- NFL, college football, NBA basketball, college basketball, NHL hockey and MLB baseball. Systems which not only are statistically proven but derived from the exact same principles you have been reading about in this post.

    If you are ready to turn the tables in your favor once and for all, and would like to receive this once in a lifetime opportunity via private e-mail, just write me and I will be happy to give you more details. I do not want to overload or burden those other readers in the forum who simply aren’t interested.

    It is my hope this post has been helpful to everyone who took the time to read it. Print it. Read it over many times. Study it. Internalize it. Observe the industry through a totally different perspective from this day forward, as I wish you nothing but the best in your future sports wagering endeavors.

    Rich H.
    ([email protected])

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      I came across this gem and wonder why it was posted and by whom. There is no address listed to contact this Rich H. and there were no responses to the ideas listed here.The [email protected] is a nonexistent address. This is one of the most unusual threads I've seen on any of the forums that I participate on. Why was this ever in this forum?