Live sports betting, also called in-play or in-game betting, has become one of the most popular ways to place bets on sporting events. Today’s bettors can enjoy the rush of fast-paced action along with the ability to take advantage of changing odds.
If you’ve never placed wagers on sporting events that are in progress, you’re missing out on a uniquely engaging experience. You’re also missing out on a lot of profitable betting opportunities.
Here are the 5 best gambling sites that offer live sports betting:
You’ll learn more about the sites below. But first, let’s take a quick look at what in-game betting is all about.
A Quick Overview Of Live Sports Betting
In-play betting gives you a chance to place wagers on games or matches that have already started. As the games progress, the odds change to reflect the most current circumstances. Therefore, if you have a keen eye for the action in a particular game or match, you can leverage those changes to your advantage.
Most of the wagers you’ll see in live sports betting are pretty straightforward. They include over/unders, moneyline bets and point spread bets.
You can also place half-time bets – or their equivalent – in select events. These wagers are predictions on what will happen during the last half of the game as opposed to the game’s actual outcome. We’ll talk about this in more detail in a moment.
Below, I’ll give you a brief rundown of the top 5 sportsbooks that offer live sports betting. There’s a good chance you’re already playing at one or more of them. If not, I strongly recommend that you register an account.
Bovada doesn’t operate on the cutting edge of sports betting. That’s by intention. Rather than filling its site with meaningless bells and whistles, it prides itself on responding to its customers’ preferences. To that end, Bovada offers a full slate of live betting options for nearly every major sport.
Tennis, soccer, baseball, football, basketball and more… they’re all covered.
When you register at Bovada, grab a 50% match bonus up to $250 (use the special bonus code “130347” to lock it in). It’s a nice bump to help get you started with in-play sports betting at the site. With $1 minimum bets, Bovada is a great place to cut your teeth if you’ve never tried live betting.
Bookmaker has been around the longest among the top live betting sportsbooks. Placing wagers there is like owning a Lexus; it’s a quality, reliable product coupled with no shenanigans. It’s not as sexy as a Lamborghini Gallardo, but you can bet it’ll provide a rewarding experience.
The site offers live betting on a huge raft of sports, including the following:
- NFL and NCAAF games
- NBA and NCAAB games
- NHL games
- MLB games
- Tennis matches
- UFC bouts
- Soccer games
Fair warning: in-play betting at Bookmaker is addictive. So watch your bankroll.
There’s a special promo at the site through which you can take advantage of a 50% match bonus up to $300. Use the code “AMP” to grab it.
BetOnline rivals Bovada on my list of recommended sportsbooks. Both books are usually neck-and-neck, vying for the top spot. Read my detailed BetOnline sportsbook review to learn the reasons.
Like Bovada and Bookmaker, BetOnline offers live betting on all major sports. They also happen to have one of the most engaging in-play sports betting environments.
The welcome bonus, a 25% match up to $1,000, is a little thin. But the betting experience you’ll have at the site will more than make up for it. In addition, you can also grab a $25 Free Play live betting bonus just for participating.
Along with Bovada, 5Dimes is one of the most recognizable names in online sports betting. The gambling site offers a ton of lines and makes it drop-dead simple to get started. It even accepts Bitcoin deposits!,
5Dimes is no slouch when it comes to in-game sports betting. It allows you to place in-play wagers on the following sports:
- Mixed Martial Arts (MMA)
When you register at the site, you’ll be given the option of choosing from one of a number of promotions:
- Reduced juice
- New player bonus (50% match up to a $600 value with an additional 20% bonus match for deposit amounts between $400 and $2,000)
- 20% cash back rebate on all sportsbook losses
- 30% Super Saver reward with -107 style pricing
- and more!
First, the bad news. For the most part, Bet365 isn’t open to U.S. sports bettors.
A few states, New Jersey, Nevada and Delaware, have passed laws that make online sports betting legal. You may be able to place wagers at Bet365 if you live in any of those 3 states. Otherwise, register at any of the other 4 sites profiled above.
Bet365 has carved out a niche in live sports betting. The site offers in-game betting on a long list of sports, more than you’ll find at most online books. Not only can you place live wagers on football, basketball, baseball, hockey and soccer, but you can also do so on the following:
If you live outside the U.S., or in New Jersey, Nevada or Delaware, be sure to register at Bet365. The list of sports you can place live wagers on is remarkable in its own right.
Now that you know the best places to make bets, let’s take a look at how to boost your winnings.
Sportsbook Live Betting Tips For Winning More Wagers
A lot of bettors believe they can significantly improve their results by following sports betting systems. Such systems dictate how you bet, the size of your wagers, and whether you should increase or decrease their amount based on your most recent wins and losses.
Personally, I’ve never had much success with systems. Nor has anyone that I know, at least in the long run. If you’re tempted to follow something like the Martingale System or Labouchere System, pay close attention to your bankroll. Most of the well-known systems assume you’re made of money and as a result can weather long dry spells.
Although I don’t recommend that you use a betting system, I do suggest following these 9 guidelines in live sports betting.
Choose Your Wagers Carefully
Be Conservative With Your Bankroll
Bet Small Amounts
Be Prepared To Act Fast
Track Your Betting Results
Bet The Other Side To Limit Your Losses
Focus On A Niche
Bet On Game/Match Outcomes
Select A Legitimate Site With Live Sports Betting
Placing live wagers is a little like being a kid in a candy store. You want to taste everything.
Resist the temptation. Choose your bets carefully in this case to avoid overextending yourself.
I recommend establishing some type of limit that guides your betting. For example, limit yourself to 20 wagers per day. Or 5 per hour.
Bankroll management is a huge stumbling block for bettors in every type of gambling situation, from casino betting to sports betting. In short, If you don’t manage your cash well, not even a high win-loss ratio will save you.
The best way to manage your bankroll is to establish a percentage limit based on the amount of cash in your account. For example, if you have $1,000 in your Bovada account, limit your cumulative daily wagers to 15%, or $150. If you’re just getting started, set the limit at 10% or lower.
Why? Because doing so will help you to avoid going broke if you hit a losing streak.
There are no “sure things” in live sports betting. You might think your favorite NBA team can’t lose since they’re up 20 points at the start of the 4th quarter, but it can happen. The lesson is, don’t throw huge sums into a “sure thing” wager.
It can go south more quickly than you can say, “100% match bonus!”
Keep your wagers small. Spread them out. Don’t bank on a huge win. Bet small, bet smart and when possible, take advantage of the changing odds or line.
And speaking of changing odds…
In live sports betting, the odds adjust quickly. But there’s often a short lag between what transpires during a game or match and how it affects the line. You’d think computer models would make the changes instantaneous, but that’s not the case.
Be ready to take advantage of big changes in the odds. The best way to do that is to have a contingent wager ready to submit if something specific happens.
In-play sports betting isn’t like spinning a roulette wheel. The difference between winning and losing isn’t based solely on luck and happenstance. It’s based above all on knowing your teams, players and an assortment of criteria that affect their performance.
Do your research. Place your wagers. Track your results.
You should see trends emerge over time. Generally, those trends will tell you whether you need to make changes in how you approach in-game betting.
Money managers use hedges to limit their risk. For example, if they load up on a volatile, small-cap biotech stock, they might sell put options for it. They bet both sides.
There are times when you’ll want to do likewise when betting on live sports. For example, suppose you bet the Lakers are going to win, but they start to tank hard in the 3rd quarter. Submit a wager for their opponents. That way, you limit your losses.
It’s always a good idea to specialize. Become a pro at a few select sports. You’ll develop a keen sense for the players and how they typically perform. You’ll also cultivate a sense for how the odds change during games and matches.
That doesn’t mean you’re suddenly barred from betting on other live sporting events. It just means you become especially adept at a few, giving you that “insider” knowledge to take advantage of.
Remember the “kid in a candy store” feeling I mentioned earlier? That feeling is never stronger than when you’re placing prop bets during live events. For example, you might bet on which NBA player will make the next 3-pointer during the 3rd quarter.Prop bets based on immediate outcomes are addictive. They’re also very risky since they’re based almost entirely on luck.
It’s okay to place proposition bets every now and then. But focus most of your wagers on how a particular game or match will end (e.g. which NBA team will win the evening’s game). There’s less luck involved.
As a rule, you should only place wagers at online sportsbooks you can trust. The problem is knowing which books are trustworthy in addition to which are scams (or have reliability issues).
You’ll find my list of recommended sports betting sites here. To begin with, I strongly recommend sticking to that list. Each site has been thoroughly vetted and has a long track record of fast payouts and stellar customer support.
What To Do Right Now To Enjoy Live Sports Betting
If you’ve never participated in live sports betting, do yourself a favor. Visit one of the five sportsbooks listed below and give it a try.
Lastly, don’t be surprised if you get addicted to the rush you’ll experience with the fast-paced action!
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