Baishampayan Ghose's photo of Las Vegas race and sports book, via Wikimedia Commons [CC BY-SA 2.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)].
Baishampayan Ghose's photo of Las Vegas race and sports book, via Wikimedia Commons [CC BY-SA 2.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)].

Inside Sports Betting

Shown: Las Vegas race and sports book. Photo Credit: Baishampayan Ghose [CC BY-SA 2.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)].

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About This Episode

Place your bets, place your bets, place your bets! On this episode of Playing with Science, hosts Gary O’Reilly and Chuck Nice lay it all on the line as we go inside the world of sports betting. Our hosts are joined by Brett Smiley, sports writer and founder of Sports Handle, statistic expert David Beaudoin, and Todd Fuhrman, FS1 contributor and host of the Bet the Board podcast. 

With the recent Supreme Court ruling, sports betting is on the rise and fully legal. You’ll learn why sports betting was outlawed in the United States before the recent changes to the law. We discuss Fox’s plans to bring betting to the Super Bowl, similar to how its affiliate, Sky Sports, handles betting in the United Kingdom. You’ll find out just how much money the sports betting industry was worth when it was illegal and we look at how much it could be worth now that’s its inside the law. 

Brett gives us tips on what not to do and what to look out for if you’re a first-time gambler. Explore how the psychology of the gambler mind is taken advantage of on both sides of the bet. David shares the process behind some of the programs he created to predict the outcomes of NHL and NBA games. You’ll hear about his influential article on why NHL teams should pull their goalies earlier in the game and how he might have re-shaped strategy around the league. 

Discover just how many factors can go into trying to predict a correct bet. Investigate how Twitter can be used to stay up to date on injuries, stats, and more. David also tells us why the general public tends to rely on recent games and trends more than it should. Lastly, Todd takes us behind the curtain and shares his experiences as a former Las Vegas odds maker. You’ll also learn why he likes to take a Malcolm Gladwell-type approach to betting. All that, plus, we ponder how machine learning and artificial intelligence will shape the future of sports betting.

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