What Does Sucker Bet Mean In Sports Betting?
by Doc's Sports - 10/10/2014
A "sucker bet" in sports betting refers to a wager considered to be unwise because the bookmaker has an overwhelming advantage. Let’s call it like it is - you have to be an idiot to make these bets consistently, and you will feel like an idiot when you realize just how bad the bet was. Basically, these are bets that, over the long term, cost significantly more than they have any chance of making. You are throwing money away. If you took the same money, put it in a pile in your backyard and lit it on fire you would be doing the same thing, and at least you could roast some marshmallows.
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The easiest example of a sucker bet is a shockingly popular Super bowl prop bet - the coin toss. We all know the odds on a coin toss - it has the same 50 percent chance of coming up heads or tails. Sportsbooks offer - happily - the opportunity to bet on the coin toss each year, yet the price is at -110, and often at -115 or even -120. Even the most mathematically-challenged individual could figure out that if you are getting less than even money on a bet that has exactly an even chance of success or failure, you are in trouble. Further, there is absolutely no way to handicap this bet to give you an edge. What came up last year, who is flipping it, the weather, the teams playing - none of it has any affect whatsoever on the coin toss. This is a total sucker bet because you are basically just making a donation to the sportsbooks. They can’t lose. You can’t win. Just writing about it gets my blood pressure up.
One common mistake that people make when talking about sucker bets is assuming that bets that cost a lot and have small returns are automatically a sucker bet. Not true. Let’s say for example that you are betting on a very heavy moneyline favorite - something like -550. Many would argue that that is a sucker bet because you will lose $550 is you lose, but only win $100 if you win. The truth is, though, that that kind of a return, or a much smaller one, is totally acceptable as long as the risk of the bet is less than the cost. Say, for example, that you could bet -550 10 times, knowing that over the long term you would only lose once. So, you would lose $550 when you lose, but win $900 for the nine wins, for a total profit of $350. Could be a great bet. Sucker bets are bets that have no value whatsoever, not necessarily bets that cost a lot to make.
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