Sports handicapping involves the process of determining which of two sports teams, if either, is favored in a specific event or during a series of games or how individual clubs will do in an entire season.
It can also pertain to sports that feature individuals such as car racing, tennis and golf. And horse races, too, of course. If you’re interested in professional sports betting, it’s important that you understand how this works, its purpose and intended result.
Sports handicappers usually work for sportsbooks, for pick services or for sports bettors. Although this tends to be closely associated with thoroughbred racing, it is a part of each and every sport on which people wager.
It’s rare to find a good individual who does all sports. These experts are not only experts on sports betting, they tend to be experts on a specific sport or a few sports. They live, eat and drink the sport and they are able to create moneylines, points spreads and over/unders that are extremely accurate.
It involves a complete and ongoing analysis of a sport and its various contests, matchups, series and games. Here are some of the activities involved in the process:
Every sports bettor is striving to be the best version of themselves. The job of the person betting on sports is to be able to analyze the matchups and the event themselves and then see how accurate they feel the odds makers who created the lines, spreads or over/unders have been.
Many sports bettors hire handicappers, often through a pick service that supplies them with a list of what teams they should go with. Although you can hire one on your own, going with a pick service is much cheaper. Even if you do pay for picks, you want to keep very involved in the sport and continue to develop your own knowledge and skills.
It demands skill, knowledge and a keenly analytical mind. At their best, a professional who supplies picks is right about 65% of the time over the course of a season. That goes to show how refined a skill this is.
People who are professional sports bettors will utilize every tool that they can to give them an edge. The fact is if you can increase your winning percentage by a few points that can mean the difference between showing a profit or a loss that week and, overall, it can have a huge effect on your rate of success.
Handicappers develop the spreads, lines and over/unders for games. They know specific sports thoroughly and possess keen analytical skills. They often use computer software, inside information and industry sources to develop their odds for sportsbooks.
They also work for sports bettors, providing picks for events. They often do this through a pick service. This time instead of creating the line or spread, they are telling the professional sports bettor how to beat the line or spread. When you think about it setting a line or creating the spread for a game requires the same skills as picking the winner.
One question beginning sports bettors often have concerns the usefulness of this type of a person. Bettors want to know if a professional’s services are really of value. The answer is that it depends upon the person or the service. They can be extremely useful in getting you a few extra solid picks a week and that can be the difference between making some cash and a lot of cash.
When you start to look around the Internet at the numerous providers of these services, you’re going to find a range of prices, services and claims. The first thing to be wary of is anyone who makes outrageous declarations or promises. If they say they’ve been 100% right during an entire season or their success rate is 85%, you’re going to require an explanation of what they mean by that.
The best of the best tend to be correct over the course of a season about 65% of the time. Yes, a knowledgeable, skilled person can have a run of picks that gives them a 100% pick rate. But eventually that percentage will go down when they have an average run and a subpar week or two of picks. Why? Because this is a human endeavor and no one can be right all of the time.
What to Look for:
Remember that the handicapper is working for you and whatever claims he/she makes should be backed up. Use his or her knowledge as one of the many tools at your disposal. Don’t lose touch with the sport. Wagering blindly is never a good idea.