Avoiding Traps in Sports Betting

Sports Betting Tips: Avoiding Trap Bets

By Loot, Sports Handicapper, Lootmeister.com

In sports-betting, we will often times stumble onto a potential wager where we sense the bookie is dangling a carrot in front of us. In other words, we are being lured into a betting trap. Certain conditions that look favorable at first glance actually turn out to be false signs of hope. We need to be careful to not fall for it hook-line and sinker.

The evil part of it is that it contradicts other things we know about sports-betting, namely the pursuit of good-value wagers. We’re supposed to be on the hunt for outstanding value. So when we come upon a line or spread that looks good, our sense of good-value hunting will make us inclined to make the bet. But there’s a fine line between good value and a bookie dangling a carrot for us to fall into a trap.

You see this a lot in NFL football. The book uses our knowledge of key numbers against us. We know how many football games fall into certain margins, namely 3, 7, or even 10 and 14. The way the scoring breaks down in football just makes it so a lot of games fall on those numbers. So when we see we are getting +7.5 on a certain team, our antenna goes up and we might think we are getting good value. Or we see a favorite is only laying 2.5, putting us right where we want to be in relation to the common margin of 3 points.

We want to be on the right side of key numbers. With all the games being decided by those particular margins, it’s comforting to be +7.5, rather than +6.5. Or we’d rather be -13.5 than -14.5. Or perhaps +10.5 instead of +9.5. It’s comforting to be on the right side of those numbers. And the bookie knows that’s how we’re looking at it and he uses it against us. When looking at spreads that fall on those key numbers, try to determine if you are getting a break by being on the right side of a key number or if you’re falling into a trap. Not all that shimmers in sports-betting is gold.

We also need to keep in mind the fact that the bookie is not ever going to give you a gift. Go to Vegas and take a look around. They’ve built replicas of the Eiffel Tower for crying out loud! You don’t get to that point by handing over money to sports-bettors. That’s why we need to be extra careful when we stumble upon a bet that gives way to thoughts that we are getting a gift-wrapped cover.

This will happen to all sports-bettors pretty regularly. You see a wager and can’t believe your eyes. You’d almost think it was a typo. The bookie is offering odds that just seem so completely out-of-whack, that you can’t pass it up. When you see that, you really need to collect yourself before plunging in full-boar. The “house” didn’t get where they are by throwing meatballs for you to hit out of the park. There may be the occasional clunker, but when you see a bet that is too good to be true, it probably is.

So the next time you’re looking at some NBA prop bets, for example, and you see that Carmelo Anthony and someone like Deron Williams are getting the same odds for who will score the most points in the next game, think twice. Everyone knows Anthony is the superior scorer, so why all of a sudden would he be getting the same odds as Williams? Seems too good to be true. They want you to bet Anthony and if you do, you’re going to find out that the powers-that-be probably knew or saw something that you didn’t. Back in the old days, I once went hook, line and sinker into a prop that had Charles Barkley vs. Jazz backup point guard Howard Eisley for total points scored. Guess who won? Not my Barkley pick!

While this doesn’t have to do with the actual betting of games, watch out for the bonus carrot being dangled. There are a lot of fly-by-night outfits in the world of sports-betting. They know their reputation is either not up-to-snuff or they don’t even have a reputation yet, so they need to go more above-and-beyond to lure customers than what an established book would. While seemingly attractive at first glance, it might not be for real. Just like anything in the world of sports-wagering, if it looks too good to be true–hold on to your wallet.

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