What Is A Bookie in Regards to Sports Betting and Wagering?
Much like every other word associated with the sports betting industry, saying“bookmaker” is just an alternative, yet fancy way of saying “sportsbook”. The term “bookmaker” is more commonly used in the UK, but still means the same thing here in North America.
What is a Bookmaker?
When you hear someone use the term “bookmaker” they are referring to a more formal way of saying bookie. Throughout the years, we’ve come to believe that “bookmakers” represent illegal gambling and have a shady way of doing business. This isn’t always the case. If you changed the word bookmaker (the common UK word) with the word “sportsbook” (common North American word), then it all of a sudden becomes a legitimate gambling avenue. Simply put, a bookmaker takes bets on sports and guarantees a return should your bet be successful.
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What Do Bookmakers Do?
Theoretically speaking, the bookmaker has a fairly simple job. They are in charge of setting an ideal line to attract even action on both sides of the line. Bookmakers also have to pay attention to the action a line is receiving. If one team is getting significantly more action than the other, the bookmakers will shift the line in order to restore balanced betting action.
When a bookmaker is great at doing their job, they are always assured a profit regardless of the outcome of the game. This is because bookmakers take in money from the losing bets, take a piece for commission and pay out the rest to the winning bettors. Because of their system, bookmakers are hardly ever concerned with who wins the action game. They only care about setting lines that receive equal action.
Bookmakers versus Bettors
As a bettor, you must understand a few things about a bookmaker in order to become successful. The first thing you must understand is that you are not competing against a bookmaker. It is not a heads-up battle, so trying to outperform them will only do more harm to your bankroll than good. Patience is a virtue when betting. The second thing you need to understand is something I’ve said several times already. A bookmakers’ job is to try and get equal action on both sides of a line to turn a profit. That’s it. Nothing more, nothing less. They aren’t trying to trick you with their lines, they are simply doing what’s best for them as a business. It’s up to you, the bettor, to understand this and make your bets accordingly.
Different Kinds of Bookmakers
Depending where you live, there are a wide range of bookmakers available for your betting needs. In the UK, betting on sports is legal, which is why most English Premier League teams are sponsored by betting shops and bookmakers. In the U.S., bookmakers are synonymous with Las Vegas, although some other states have legalized gambling.
In Canada, bookmakers are very common online with Sports Interaction and Bodog being the most popular Canadian books. The Canadian government offers a regulated sports lottery, but it pales in comparison to online books, with it’s very poor odds and lack of betting options.
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