Finding a good sportsbook online has become increasingly difficult these days. Thanks to the influx of new sites, sifting through the chaff to find the wheat isn't an easy task. Luckily, if you know what to look for, you can make finding a sportsbook easier than ever. If you're an avid online poker player, you probably already know a few of these tips. Likewise, you'll probably have the knack for numbers and statistics needed to be a successful sports bettor if you spend all your time grinding micro stakes, calculating pot odds and EV. Anyway, here's a quick guide to finding your next online sportsbooks and start placing bets.
Finding a Trusted Sportsbook
Sportsbook reviews are easily the best way to vet an online sportsbook. Those in the Midwest would do well to check sports betting Illinois, while others might have to snoop around on social media sites for sportsbook reviews. Look for reviews that describe stellar customer service, multiple payment methods, a wide coverage of matches and games and decent bonuses. There's bound to be a handful of negative reviews, but a distinct pattern of players complaining about late or declined withdrawals, poor customer service, and horrible odds should be a sign to avoid it at all costs.
You should also make sure that the sportsbook is operating with a valid gambling license. There are a number of regulatory agencies, such as Curacao Gaming, that ensure that both poker sites and sportsbooks are operating fairly. Avoid sites that don't have a license or claim to have a license that you can't verify yourself. If you stick to big-name sites, you can easily avoid this problem, but that isn't always the case. When in doubt, protect yourself and your cash; always verify the license.
Looking at Bonuses and Promotions
Poker sites aren't exactly known for their stellar bonuses and promotions, as most only have some form of a loyalty program, a welcome bonus, and the occasional rakeback. Sportsbooks, on the other hand, are well known for offering weekly or even daily deals. While you'll still find welcome bonuses and loyalty programs, you'll also come across game-specific promotions, parlay bet bonuses, and more.
Just be sure to read the fine print. As with all bonuses, these come with wagering requirements. You'll have to wager any winnings along with the bonus a certain number of times before you'll be able to withdraw it. Avoid sites with unreasonably high wagering requirements, as they're not giving you a fair chance at keeping that bonus.
Examining the Available Games
A sportsbook is only as good as its variety—unless you're looking for just one particular game. If you're a fan of baseball and that's all you want to bet on, you'll find that most sportsbooks can keep you satisfied. Still, you might want to branch out into other sports or even make binary bets on non-sports-related outcomes, such as politics. You're better off starting your sports betting journey with a full-fledged sportsbook rather than having to make a new account in a few months.
The Difference Between Sports Betting and Daily Fantasy Sports
Now that you know what to look for in a sportsbook, you should understand the difference between sportsbooks and popular sites like DraftKings and FanDuel. Thanks to those two sites (among others), you may have heard the term daily fantasy sports (DFS) get tossed around recently. You should know that sports betting and DFS are two very different things.
Whereas sports betting tends to be simple and involves placing a bet on the outcome of a game or a particular event within a game, DFS involves a multitude of other factors. DFS requires players to draft a team with salary limits. As the drafted players play in their respective matches, they'll earn points for different things like runs, passes, yards run, interceptions and etc. As your drafted team accumulates points, you'll climb through the leaderboards, hopefully placing in the money for the day and earning yourself a bit of cash.
Thanks to the popularity of fantasy sports, DFS has had a huge increase in popularity over the last few years. If you've played fantasy sports, you'll already be familiar with the format. If you haven't played fantasy sports, worry not—it's extremely easy to dive in and get started, even if you know nothing about that particular sport.
Poker players can be expert sports bettors; they just might not know it yet. You've already spent hours memorizing hands and looking at pre-flop charts. If some of that time was spent analyzing teams and players, you could easily turn yourself into a successful sports bettor. Just be sure that you're betting with a licensed sportsbook that offers decent bonuses and promotions along with the games that you intend to bet on. In no time at all, you'll find yourself having more fun than the final table in a hyper tournament.