The Art of Line Shopping

The Art of Line Shopping

Millions, if not billions, worldwide are constantly stapled to their televisions, phones, and tablets watching sports or tracking the activities of their favorite teams or players. Furthermore, millions worldwide go one step further and begin to engage in sports betting.

If you are one of those who chose to bet on sports bet, there are many ways to minimize risk and maximize profit. Now I first recommend using a unit system in accordance with your bankroll, then utilizing a betting odds calculator to figure out how much dough to lay on a bet. But if you’re already a pro at bankroll management, let’s learn about the idea of line shopping. 

Juice Shopping

When you log on to your favorite betting site or bookie and select plays simply posted on that individual site, consider that you’re doing yourself a disservice. Line shopping is the idea that you (the bettor) access several betting platforms to find the best available line for the desired bet. 

Now at first glance, does this difference really mean that much? Most books are relatively consistent with their lines, and you might not find more than a five or 10-point difference in the lines. That obviously isn’t a big deal. WRONG. 

Consider this, you place 100 bets weekly, all at -120. And in the same week, your friend placed 100 bets on a different site at -110. Ten points may not look like the biggest deal, but long-term profitability says otherwise. 

The individual placing bets at -120 would need 55 of his 100 bets to be green to simply break even. Now the individual who found better lines on a different betting platform would only need 52 of his 100 bets to be green. You could also use an odds calculator to figure out your potential payout easier. 

This 10-point difference in every bet makes a major difference long term. This means you would need three fewer bets per week, 156 fewer bets a year, and 780 fewer bets per 5 years to break even. See the value? Now ask any sharp person what they would think, and they would agree because getting an edge on books is difficult to find, but line shopping allows you to give yourself a very easy edge. 

Point Spread Shopping

Now, this is just juice shopping. Juice shopping is looking for less “juicy” bets elsewhere. There is also point spread shopping. First, I just want you to think about all your past prop bets and straight spread bets and just imagine the pain you’ve felt after losing a bet by .5 or even 1.5. 

Player prop bets move the most drastically in reaction to live news and narratives. And if you feel a way about a player and have a predetermined idea of how his game will pan out, point spread shopping is key.

For example, Klay Thompson’s point prop was set at 20.5 points before Game 6 of the NBA Finals. Well, of course, Klay Thompson has been a deadeye throughout his career in Game 6s. 

From the usual 17.5 or 18.5, his point total was inflated for the narrative. If you were a better and thought Klay Thomspon would go under his point total after only averaging 18 PPG in his first five games of the series, you would bet the under on the 20.5 

However, if you were to shop prop lines on various books, you could have found 21.5 on BetOnline. And because you had that preconceived notion of him going under, you would have an extra point of protection in comparison to other bettors. Of course, Klay Thompson did go under that game. 

Shopping for lines can be very beneficial because it gives you less juicy picks, which means greater profitability. Still, it can also help you edge out picks if various books have lines differing by .5 or 1.0. Try using a parlay calculator and see for yourself the difference a small juice change can make. 

Remember, line shopping is a tool to use when betting, it is not guaranteed that you find bettor lines elsewhere. For example, in highly saturated sporting events like the Super Bowl, lines are fairly identically throughout the board. Use line shopping wisely to make yourself a smarter and hopefully richer bettor.

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