Live Sports Betting Strategy

Live sports betting is a different animal than traditional pre-match wagering. While there is no change in the way wagers are graded, live betting markets adjust rapidly and bettors need to have special considerations when betting live on sports compared to traditional pre-match wagering.

Best Live Sports Betting Sites of 2018

Rank
Payment Grade
Rating
Bonus
Bet Now

Live In Game Betting Strategy – High Vigorish

One of the biggest issues with live sports betting markets is that the vigorish is often extremely high. Proposition wagers suffer from this same problem, but like betting props, live betting can be extremely profitable. However, certain markets should be avoided altogether and finding +EV bets can be difficult unless you know what you’re doing. One of the worst mistakes bettors can make when betting live is disregarding the high vigorish on wagers that seem too good to be true.

Many sports bettors believe that live betting markets are geared towards recreational bettors and offer little value. When it comes to the market as a whole, they are incorrect, but there are plenty of sites that are juicing their live betting markets through the roof.

Live Betting Arbitrage

Live betting markets create excellent opportunities for sports betting arbitrage. In fact, many elite level sports bettors make their living from placing arbitrage wagers, and a large percentage of their profits come from in-play betting markets. Much of the arbitrage opportunities available regarding live betting come from pre-match bets that can be arbed after a change in the live betting odds. There is also plenty of plenty of possibilities for arbitrage when it comes to in-play markets alone.

However, as we will touch on later in this article, the market for live betting is considerably better and safer from those betting internationally, rather than players based in the United States. This is mostly due to the U.S. government’s stance on online sports betting, which criminalizes operators who offer sports betting services to U.S. residents.

Hedging In Live Sports Betting

Similar to arbitrage, is the opportunity to hedge wagers using live betting markets. Hedging pre-match wagers are the way that most bettors will utilize live betting markets, but there may be just as many chances to hedge previous in-play bets once the odds change, often in the same event.

Live Football BettingHowever, bettors should use extreme caution when hedging using live betting markets. In many cases, they are giving up EV by deciding to hedge. This is especially so when it comes to live betting due to the high juice that some sportsbooks utilized. Often, this amounts to a -EV result with the when you combine the two wagers.

Some gamblers might see hedging with live betting markets as an opportunity to reduce the variance that comes with sports betting. It’s true that this will reduce variance, but it comes at a cost. Hedging with a -EV wager or even a bet that is neutral will reduce variation but will also reduce your EV. Bettors need to be selective and pick their sports when they hedge using live betting markets. Hedging is a concept that few bettors fully understand. In almost all cases, you should not hedge your bet, unless the market you are using for your hedge bet is +EV on its own.

Another scenario is when you’ve bet too much on a market by accident or are looking to reduce your exposure from a bet that you made that you realized was a -EV wager. Of course, live betting can also be used to reduce your losses to paying the vig when you accidentally place a bet on the wrong side of a market.

How To Win At Live Betting

It’s vital for bettors to realize that live betting markets are algorithm based, and the odds are generated from derivative markets. There isn’t an oddsmaker behind the scenes updating the odds after each play. Almost all of this stuff is completely automated.

Sports Betting –  Where To Bet

First and foremost is learning the sports that you’re betting on, inside and out. Most of sports betting is rooted in mathematics, and there are many successful sports bettors out there who have little knowledge of their sports they are betting but have an understanding of how betting markets work and have the skills to spot +EV wagers.

Those principles still apply when it comes to live sports betting markets, but a deeper knowledge of the sport you’re betting is going to be much more beneficial. Understanding the sport you’re betting from a percentages standpoint, and an in-depth understanding of the coaches, players, and tactics will increase your bottom-line.

Remember, the live betting algorithms used by the sportsbooks are going to be -EV for just about everyone. Placing indiscriminate wagers without knowledge of the markets and events is going to result in losses. However, they don’t play the games on paper. Even though the bookies (in most cases) have correctly priced the different scenarios that occur in a particular event, there are human elements.

Knowledge of Teams and Players – Live Betting Strategy

That’s where the knowledge of teams and players comes into place. If you have extensive knowledge, there are going to be spots to exploit. There is also the chance that a particular sportsbook has mispriced specific scenarios and is offering inefficient odds for all contests of an individual sport. However, this situation is rare.

Online Sportsbooks – Good Players Banishment

The biggest indicator of the sharpness of live betting markets is how often sportsbooks ban or limit players for their success. This is a frequent occurrence. Many sportsbooks, particularly recreational ones, have little patience for players who are beating them at live betting markets.

Live Betting – Shop For Better Price

One of the best ways to get a better price is by taking a favorite that you liked pre-match but felt the odds were too steep or you couldn’t find value in the market. This scenario can backfire if they get out to an early lead, but this is often not the case. Consider a baseball game where a pitcher and his team are huge pre-match favorites. In the first inning, the ace starter gives up one run. This causes the odds to adjust a bit for the underdog.

Sure, the pitcher gave up a run in the first inning, and his team is now losing, but if you had faith in the team or starter before the game started – there’s no reason to abandon it now. The good news is that you’re getting a much better price than you would pre-match.

Bet on the Most Likely Winner – Betting Strategy

We can also utilize this in football when a team gets falls behind early or gets off to a fast start. If you expect the team with a lead to lose or blow a lead, there may be value taking the other side. Likewise, if a team you liked quite a bit pre-match goes down early, you’re getting a much better price if you expect them to come back and cover.

Of course, there are many propositions in addition to live sides, totals, and moneylines. These need to be attacked on sport by sport basis. If you’re an expert on the markets you’re betting, you can find value with props, which can number into the dozens at many sportsbooks.

Best Live Sports Betting Strategy – Stick To Yours

Live betting can be a roller coaster when it comes to your bankroll and emotions. You’re going to have to make your decisions in a matter of seconds in many cases. It’s important to stick to your strategy and exploit what you can, without betting on impulse.

Analyzing the market and game situation needs to be done extremely quickly. You won’t have several hours or longer to make a decision as is the case with pre-match wagering. If you enjoy kicking back and having a few beers while you watch the game you bet on – live betting may not be for you.

Reputable Online Sportsbooks For Live Betting

Live betting is an area where less than stellar sportsbooks will not only offer poor odds but may retroactively void bets or freeroll their customers. It’s of vital importance, particularly when you’re arbing or hedging that you’re sure that the bet will be honored, and you will receive your winnings.

This makes it tougher for U.S. sports bettors, who have far fewer trusted options than those internationally. Live betting lower tier sportsbooks is fine, provided you understand the risks. If you’re arbing or hedging your wagers at these books, you’re almost certainly going to get burned sooner or later.