Sportsbook And Bookmaker Differences

A lot of our readers have emailed us lately and from their comments it seems that they are under the assumption that the words “sportsbook, bookie, handicapper, and bookmaker” are completely interchangeable. While we would never dream of giving anyone an English lesson, there is quite a big difference between the terms and it seemed important enough to point out in this week’s editorial. So here you go, your very own FAQ on sportsbooks and bookmakers-

What’s the difference between a sportsbook and a bookmaker?

A sportsbook is an establishment that accepts wagers while a bookmaker is the person who determines the actual odds. Sometimes these two entities work together under the same roof, but most of the time they are two completely separate businesses.

Don’t bookmakers work for the sportsbooks directly?

Honestly, that comparison is a lot like how most retail stores work; even though they may sell specific products, it is purchased from another business. Some bookmakers are employed directly by sportsbooks while others offer handicapping advice to multiple casino chains at once.

What’s the difference between a bookmaker and a handicapper?

Realistically they are the exact same thing; both bookmakers and handicappers compute sports betting odds and they both sell that information to others. Bookmakers generally work for the casino industry by making betting lines that favor them, handicappers usually offer their picks to consumers based on those lines.

What’s the difference between a sportsbook and a bookie?

A sportsbook, as we already mentioned, is a reputable business that offers various betting odds on sporting events and horse racing. A bookie does the exact same thing, except that this individual is not always as reputable. In other words, you can almost always trust a legitimate sportsbook but you can rarely trust a legitimate bookie.

Do bookmakers and handicappers bet at sportsbooks?

In some areas they are not allowed to place wagers inside casinos and sportsbooks because of that region’s gambling laws. Even where it is legal for them to make wagers, however, many sports betting establishments would probably think twice before accepting a wager from someone with insider knowledge of the industry. That would be like selling defective furniture and running a furniture repair business on the side; it’s just not a good combination.

How do sportsbooks pay their bookmakers?

That’s an interesting question because it’s something the industry has experimented with for decades now. On one hand, if the sportsbook paid their bookmakers poorly then they simply gambled on several lines and made a small fortune. On the other hand, if they paid them too high then they were likely to take the money and run, so the industry had to find a happy medium. Most modern bookmakers are paid a small percentage of the casino’s profits from their sports bets plus a standard weekly salary.

Why do sportsbooks need bookmakers?

There is a lot more to the line you see in Vegas than what you’d think, and bookmakers look at hundreds of individual statistics that most people would never even think of. How a team plays away from home, team injuries, recent streaks, family issues, what the team did the night before the match-up, and dozens of other details are studied and plotted before the overall betting lines are released. Most sportsbooks simply do not have the level of knowledge it requires to properly calculate all of these things and still make a profit.

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