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  • Created On:
    09/07/2011 9:56 PM
  • Last Update:
    01/17/2019 7:25 AM


Most of you guys know that I have been in the sports gaming industry my entire life. In fact, besides investments that I have made with the help of sports betting, I have never made an income any other way. Because I began as a bookmaker, I got the opportunity to meet what I believe to be every type of "gambler" there is...and fortunately, after hanging that up for a life of moving "Steam" for some of the most well recognized betting syndicates...I was also able to come across just about every type of "Sharp Handicapper"...and Finally, since coming to Pregame and agreeing to share my bets with others...I have had the pleasure to get a very up close perspective of the way many bettors come to a decision when trying to handicapp a match-up...

So after all of these years in the industry, I have come to the conclusion that there are 3 types of handicappers...Now I am not refering to Professional Sports Bettors, because they come in a variety of different personalities, and their success ultimately comes down to the individual's ability to manage their finances...In other words, the successful ones are those who have the ability to do well in other aspects of their lives financially...because those type of Pro-Bettors do this for 1 reason and 1 reason only...To Turn a Profit...

Getting back to another story all together. I believe that the very best all have the same gift when it comes to their work..."BALANCE"...The reason I say this is because it is the handicapper who can best combine all 3 personalities into his work, that is the biggest threat to bookmakers...So let's get to the 3 Types that I have catagorized them in :

1.) "The Sports Fan"...This type of handicapper loves sports...They are usually guys who played sports as youngsters year round and dreamed of becomming pro athletes. They watch SportsCenter 3 times per day and are in fantasy leagues and know the teams better than they know themselves. These guys will recite alma-matters and the final score of Super Bowl II...They watch the drafts and study magazines and believe that their knowledge of sports and the personnel of the teams gives them their edge over the point-spread...And when they lose, they take it getting angry and doing things like yelling at the TV...and claiming the coach made the wrong decisions to cost him...

2.) "The Conspiracy Theorist"...This type of handicapper believes that the point-spreads are like a movie and he just needs to figure out how it's going to play out in the end...These guys can be overheard saying absurd things like "Vegas Needs Miami"...or "That was fixed"...Somehow when the game lands near the number, the conspiracy is so evident to them...while the other 90% of the times it don't, they ignore...They don't care about injury reports or weather, or even the teams playing because like I said...their key to success comes by being able to "read between the lines" as they say...They almost always believe they are on the other side of the public, yet rarely are... and when they are up by 7 and laying -5...never seem surprised when the opponent kicks a meaningless FG to cost them a winning ticket, because it just means he was on the wrong side of the "Vegas Conspiracy"...

3.) "The MIT Wiz"...For this type of bettor...Data means everything. There is definately a complex formula or system which will produce winner after winner, but they just haven't completely figured it out yet. These guys don't care much about the oddsmakers opinions or what the public is doing because to them...the game could easily be figured out by stats. These guys are always tossing out stats and numbers to make them seem like they know more than anyone else...but most of the times, they don't even know how those numbers truely affect the outcome of a sporting event...

Now, please do not think that I am bashing any of these 3 types because truth is...all of us have some of these traits. Instead, I am trying to point out that if you can simply take the best qualities of ALL 3...and utilize them as a handicapper, your results will improve dramatically. The reason for this is because just like have to know your sports and your teams and love what you are doing...And just like need to account for the oddsmakers intentions and public perception...And just like need to have a good understanding of how to accurately create a strong number based on stats as well as perception...

So in my opinion, as a handicapper you need to be Balanced to have a chance to truely succeed in what is one of the most difficult markets to profit in...which is evident by the number of people who actually make a living or create a lucrative investment from sports betting...The "sharp" capper that I have had the pleasure and privilage of working with ALL had these 3 Personalities wrapped into 1...and I personally watched them switch from one to the other so smoothly as they tried to put all the pieces of the puzzle together and "Reason" properly to come to a conclusion and pick a winner...Because to have success in this racket, your biggest asset has to be your ability to reason...and your ability to reason at higher and higher levels as you gain experience..

Finally, my suggestion to all those who are striving to either become excellent handicappers or even professional sports to make sure that you acknowledge the 3 type of ways to handicapp because they all have their strengths...while their weakness lies in the handicappers inability to look past, only their own way of doing things and not realizing that EVERY one of those types is what will allow this market to ultimately become beatable for you...Best of Luck, Vegas-Runner...

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