When it comes to betting on sports, there are no sure things. But making money on sports bets is possible, especially for disciplined bettors who know how to look for value and stick to a plan. Some even make a living out of sports betting. These people are usually well-educated about the game, have a knack for understanding math and research, and have a strong bankroll to back them up.
As of this writing, there are 31 states that have legalized some form of sports betting. New Jersey was the first, followed by Delaware and West Virginia. Then came Mississippi, which launched its regulated market in March 2018. And finally, Ohio, which kicked off its sports betting in October 2023.
It has been a remarkable year for legal sports betting in the United States, which is largely due to a court ruling that struck down PASPA (the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act). The Supreme Court of the United States ruled that states have the right to regulate sports gambling as they see fit.
The legalization of sports betting has given rise to a variety of different models for state regulation. Some, like New Jersey’s and Nevada’s, have very robust centralized data hubs that allow for the sharing of wagering information and help ensure the integrity of games. Other states have focused on allowing multiple operators to operate in the same market. This has helped to keep prices competitive and increase consumer choice.
There are also a number of different tax structures for sports betting. Some states have a flat tax rate, while others have tiered rates. Most, though, focus on maximizing the amount of taxable revenue that can be generated. In some cases, this is driven by the desire to generate funds for public education and other public services.
Sports betting has also been embraced by some of the major sports leagues and teams. The NBA and NHL, for example, have established partnerships with sportsbooks. And several teams have signed up with fanDuel and other gaming entities to provide player-specific stats for their betting customers.
Another popular way to place bets on sports is by placing a wager on a total. These bets are placed on a combination of any number of statistics in a game, such as points, goals, rebounds, wins, saves, rounds, birdies, and aces. When a team or individual finishes above or below a predetermined total, the bettor is paid. Over/Under betting is very common in baseball, but it’s also available for a wide range of other sports.