Tips for sports bettors

Vegas casino sports betting is legal in half of US states but many people place their wagers without really knowing what they’re doing. Read about the sports gambling dos and don’ts to be sure that you are betting wisely with the largest chance of getting a return on your investment.


For as long as man has lived in an environment of social groupings, there have been sporting events where people could compete and socialize. French cave paintings that date back more than 15,000 years depict wresting and sprinting while “modern” Neolithic cave drawings in Mongolia (dating back 7000 years) show wrestlers surrounded by crowds of people. In Egypt, rock art seems to show swimming and archery competitions and in Japan prehistoric cave paintings depict a kind of sumo wrestling match.

The Sumerians were known to be avid wrestlers and boxers. Excavations in Egypt attest to the seriousness in which Egyptians took sporting events including weightlifting, swimming, archery, fishing, rowing, long/high jumping, javelin throwing and ball games.   The Olympic competitions of 776BCE to 393CE cemented Greek unity while honoring the Greek passion for physical engagement.

Other regions in which sports were honored were Ireland (hurling), Scotland (shinty), Rome (harpastum, similar to rugby and Persia (jousting and polo).

Sports Betting

Many of these ancient sports were accompanied by gambling. The first record of sports betting can be traced back more than 2000 years, though many historians assume that the earlier sporting events were also accompanied by some form of wagering.

Written accounts of betting on the Olympics exist and in Rome sports betting was formally legalized. Notoriously, Romans bet on gladiator games. Sports betting spread to other lands though religious leaders tried to outlaw it during medieval times.

The attempt to make sports betting illegal drove the practice underground. Over the years people have bet on sports, legally where it was available and illegally when necessary. Horse betting became a favored sport for betting in the 18th century and over the years the betting has spread to other types of sports, notably football (both American and European).

Today sports betting is legal, in some form, in much of the world. A large percentage of the sports betting has gone online, both through retail casinos and other betting operations. If you’re interested in betting on sports you can find a licensed, reliable site, either land-based or through the Internet, where you can place your bets on any sport that you wish.

If you’re placing a sports bet, consider some dos and don’ts – keeping these in mind will help you make the right decisions at each juncture of your sports betting adventure.

Sports Betting Best Practices


Do your research. Sports betting is an art and the more that you understand, the better you’ll perform. For one thing, you need to know the spread. Point spread betting is the most popular type of sports betting. It’s a spread created by sportsbooks that divvies up the spread in a way that, for the sportsbook, ensures that the bets will be more evenly spread out between the two teams. The point spread gives bettors reasons to risk money on both teams.

It’s not easy to deal with spread when betting on basketball because basketball bets involve factors beyond betting strategy changes and an all-encompassing analytical approach. Some team lines, notably those from big cities, may be slightly inflated because so many people bet on their own city’s team for loyalty/sentimental purposes. In addition, basketball lines can move based on both smart and public action.

In basketball an extra point on either side can mean the difference between avoiding a line because it’s “too sharp” or taking it because it is advantageous. If you’re betting on a basketball game, it’s suggested that you wait to make your bet until the inactives are announced.

That way, you can assess whether the lines are what you want and then monitor the live line offerings as you identify the potential value opportunities. The lines should be considered when they are first published but other correlative factors will help you determine whether a line is considered to have potential value.

In-Play Betting

If you’re interested in in-play betting, bet online. Aside from the obvious convenience of placing bets on any Internet-connected device, online betting or mobile betting allows the bettor to see betting lines change as they change. This means that you’ll have the best chances to place the most informed bets as the game progresses.


Keep records and check those records periodically to monitor your wins and losses. You’ll be able to see whether you have areas in which you need to improve, whether you perform better when you wager on one sport over another, whether your performance improves if you are getting information from one source over another, etc.

Early Betting

For some sports including pro hockey, pro football and pro baseball, it’s a good idea to bet early. That’s because most bettors in these sports place moneyline wagers. Moneyline bets are different from spread bets in that there are more than one outcome, depending on the sport.

In a moneyline bet the bettor chooses one of those options to win, a straight and easy betting option. If there’s an impact player with a day-to-day listing, you might want to hold off and wait until the starting line-ups are announced but otherwise, early betting is recommended.

Early betting is a good way to wager on some sports because the early lines give the best value. As game time approaches the early lines get “sharp”, especially if there’s an injury to the player, meaning that you don’t know until game day what the starting line-up will be.  However, if the line is set favorably for the side on which you plan to wager, betting early gives you an advantage.

It’s sometimes worthwhile to wait till closer to game time when you can find a more favorable line but that’s a call that you need to weigh. Typically, a large volume of action comes in on the day of the event which creates line movement that then creates more value both on the favorite and on the underdog.

In a pro football game, line movement can occur throughout the week preceding the game. That’s why you should keep your eye on the top play if you’re going to place a later bet.

Sports betting isn’t brain surgery – you should expect to win some and lose some. But you can increase those wins by researching your options and betting smart.

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