Friday, November 25, 2005

Luck and Sports Betting

Denver covered my spread by 1 point yesterday. They did this by beating Dallas in overtime by a field goal. Some might call that luck. I don’t. I call it probability.

Look at last week. I was on the Jaguars -4, and they were up 10 going into the last minute of play. Down 10, Tennessee got the ball, drove down the field, and scored a TD with 22 seconds left. Tennessee then tried an onside kick, didn’t get it, and the game was over. I lost that bet by 1 point due to a last minute backdoor cover by the Titans. Bad Luck? No probability.

What I mean by probability is that these plays are going to happen. Me, you, everybody is going to loss games that they believe they should have won. The opposite is true too. We are going to win games, that we probably should have lost. Like if you bet on the Titans last week :O)

Why doesn’t this bother me? First off, it is a two way street. Second off, these plays even themselves out over time. Figuring I bet between 70 to 90 games a year in the NFL, there are going to be quite a few that I win or loss by 1 or 2 points (if not a ½ point). It’s not because I bet mediocre plays. It’s because no matter how strong a play might be, the outcomes are still determined by men playing a game that can change at the drop of a hat. Unexpected injuries, turnovers, and penalties occur all the time and whatever edge you had when you bet the game, could be completely erased the first 2 minutes.

Every game I bet I believe that I have a distinct advantage over the sportsbooks and the public. I put Denver as a good play yesterday for very good reasons. (I had them favored by 6, etc.) But regardless of the reasons, I can’t expect to win all of my plays. I can only hope to win almost 60% of all my plays in the long run, because no one ever does better than that (yes, even me). So for every play I bet, I can reasonably expect to lose 4 out of 10 of them. Because of this, every play I win by 1 point, I expect to lose another by 1. If it happens, if it doesn’t, I don’t really care. I just expect it.

Anyway, 1-0 so far this weekend…3-2 YTD for posted plays, +0.74 units

Other Plays:
KC -3

Added today:
SD Charges -3
Oakland -7

Good Luck all

- The Online Sports Bettor