Why the Sharps Win & the Public lose at Sports betting

For as long as sports betting has been around the common mentality people share about it goes something like this:

“It’s impossible to win. Vegas is too good and they’ll always win. You’re fighting a losing battle by getting involved.”


I’m not here to argue that Vegas could ever be beaten by the masses… that will never happen. What I am arguing though is that sports betting, when approached the right way, can be very profitable and the individuals who do it the right way can beat Vegas. The problem with the masses though is this: more people would rather take the easy way out than do things the right way. This reality is one-hundred percent applicable in the sports betting world.

More people would rather sit on the couch and snack than go to the gym. More people would rather dream of hitting the lotto than work to build a life they wake up excited about every day. More people would rather pick games off of no research than take the time to study the teams, the players, the coaches, the game-film, and the overall strategy of sports betting success. The “rush” is too much fun for them to pass up on.

Enter the uncommon men. Enter the men who live in Vegas and make a living off of predicting sports winners (aka the “sharps.”). Enter the Billy Walters of the world who does nothing but bet sports and is worth “hundreds of millions of dollars” (source: ESPN). These are the men doing things differently because they know that nothing great can happen without having great habits.


So what is the right way to bet sports? If you study enough you can find it. If you choose to think differently you can start learning it. The short answer is a dedication to scout teams, insane discipline, and an overall bold attitude of “I don’t care that everyone and their mother is picking Team A I’m picking their opponent because I studied x,y, and z.”

Put 100 guys in a room. Maybe 1 of them has the attitude and dedication to take that stance. Maybe. 


“When you think about sports betting there is far better information on your local sports team than there is about any local business in your (stock) market. The smart money in sports betting isn’t just good, it’s very good.”  -Mark Cuban

Cuban said this back in 2004 in a blogpost on his website. Cuban gets it. Cuban understands that the life of a successful sports bettor is much like the life of the successful entrepreneur – a lifestyle of constant willingness to outwork and outsmart the masses to gain an edge. The Mark Zuckerbergs and the Jeff Bezos’s of the world didn’t get to where they are today by accepting a mediocre attitude towards learning. The same philosophy applies to pro bettor Billy Walters – who works his tail off to gain an edge in the sports betting market.

The amount of information available online about sports teams is endless – stats, trends, game film, roster changes, etc. You can’t say that about blackjack. Can’t say that about roulette. Not craps, slots, or any table game you put your money on in a casino. Sports betting is one of those rare investment opportunities where information and discipline is power. Think stock investing and real estate with the ability to re-watch film of all the information you need to know.

“Sports betting … involves ‘substantial [not slight] skill.’ Sports bettors can employ superior knowledge of the games, teams, and players in order to exploit odds that do not reflect the true likelihoods of the possible outcomes.” – US General Attorney Loretta Lynch.

It’s definitely not easy but there is certainly a winning strategy available for sports betting….and there’s more than just one path to success. How many men actually choose to take this path will always be few and far between.

Vegas will continue to feast off of the public’s shortcuts and the sharps will continue to compete and beat Vegas at their own game.

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