Specialization is the Sportsbook's Kryptonite

GP Academy Sneak-peek

Hey Everyone,

Today I wanted to share an expert tip I wrote for the members of GP Academy. This week we spent a lot of time learning about originating (a topic that’s woefully misunderstood and under-represented in betting education)

If you want to try the Academy, there is currently a 14-day free trial! Sign up here: https://academy.goldenpants.com/

Here is a taste of what’s inside w/ Thursday’s “Expert Tip”

The expert tip earlier in the week got us believing that sportsbooks are not omnipotent odds makers. In fact, that's not even what they are great at.

They are great at:

  • Bringing people onto their platform

  • Getting thousands of lines out each day

  • Grading

  • Paying / transacting with customers

  • And doing it again tomorrow

Unlike us, a sportsbook doesn't have "one goal". (Our goal is to make +EV bets). The book consists of people with different goals:

  • Traders don't want to embarass themselves infront of their bosses.

  • Their bosses want smooth numbers to present to the executives.

  • The executives want smoother numbers to present to investors.

What happens to this complicated hierarchy when a sharp bettor starts playing?

The trader's in a weird situation. They can keep taking the action and learn from it - and many want to. After all, the trader's have ego tied up in the trading results just like we do.

But their bosses hate losing - they have metrics on hold % that they (wrongly) get judged on by their bosses. So when a customer rinses a trader, the trader gets yelled at for fucking up their bosses metrics. The trader then (effectively) kicks out the customer. Doesn't matter who's decision it is.

So what do we do in this situation? Are we doomed to get kicked from book to book like an unwanted pet?

I have spent a lot of time thinking about this

I have tried a lot of different tactics to break through the barriers put up against bettors

I believe there is one answer to this question...


Many of you know I specialize in golf. So much so that when asked about data sources for other sports in the previous few days - I have been entirely unhelpful.

The reason I specialize in golf is because I love golf.

The reason I specialize is I love taking the sportsbook's money.

Specializing allows you to:

  • Bet into sharp books,

  • Make winning bets without CLV

  • Bet a price that isn't the best on the market.

This is the best way to get your head above water and feel comfortable.

If you pour enough time and energy into one market, I promise you can create advantages against the sportsbook trader. Remember, we don't need to make a market - we just need to be able to snipe value.

The first step of specialization is market specialization. AKA knowing:

  • Which books are sharp in your sport

  • When movement happens

  • Who are the market movers for the market

The second is specialization in domain knowledge. You learn:

  • Wrinkles that bookmakers can't account for

  • Rule changes that will discredit historic data

  • Best sources of news and lineups

  • Special situations that create windfalls (Wynham Clark at Pebble, Mikal Bridges iron man, Draymond Green Klay Thompson return).

And third, you specialize in the data analysis of the sport. You:

  • Know the best data sources for the sport

  • Learn how to build a useful database for the sport

  • Understand which hypotheses could be valuable and which aren't worth chasing

If you do all this, it would be unreasonable to believe that you can't win.

The best advice when you are starting out is "the sportsbooks know more than you". That's because they do! But a lot of that is knowledge you get quickly while betting top-down.

Once you understand how sports betting works, I think it's worthwhile to take another crack at making a better number than the books. And that's what we are trying to do here.

Take that next step from top-down to complete bettor. So mull over the list above.

  • Do you know who the market makers are in your sport?

  • Do you have a weighted list of who is sharp and who isn't?

  • When does your market move?

  • Where are the best data stored?

Spend some time thinking about this and fill in any gaps in your knowledge that you can.

If you enjoyed the above and want to learn how to bet, instead of just relying on others for picks, join the best sports betting education community: https://academy.goldenpants.com/