US Sportsbooks Shouldn’t Limit Players’ Bet Sizes

OPINION: US Sportsbooks Shouldn’t Limit Players’ Bet Sizes

Sportsbooks win at a rate of roughly 7% – an average level compared to casino games.
There are a few factors that can help players who are being limited at sportsbooks.

LAS VEGAS – In a recent article from The Athletic, famous sports bettor James Holzhauer discussed ways to avoid getting limited at a sportsbook.

Often, sportsbooks will limit sharps (and sometimes even casual bettors) based on their betting history. Many using FanDuel, DraftKings, BetMGM, and others have expressed irritation when getting limited.

In most cases, the limits are extreme, only accepting action as low as a few dollars on a futures bet or free play.

However, these limits rarely come from how well you’ve done in the past. But rather, these limits come when sharps have laid action on one side of the line.

Limits are often posted clearly at both in person sportsbooks as well as online sports betting sites. If a sign isn’t displayed, there is usually a help section that details this information.

Yet, the sports betting world is seeing many limits that fall inside or outside of this range.

Methods For Falling Under The Radar:

Wager 70-80% of the betting limit
Bet on Both Sides On A Line (after adjustment)
Wait for line updates, don’t “clean the board”
Mix in small market sports and different types of bets
Don’t bet all at once, take time in between bets

While these sports betting methods are helpful, should bettors be limited by licensed sportsbooks?

To Limit Or Not To Limit

Sportsbooks work on small margins, often quoted at 5%. In the last four years since the repeal of PASPA, sportsbook margins have been closer to 7.5%.

Still, these margins are comparable to many other gambling markets.

Single Deck Blackjack 0.5%
Craps 0.8%
Baccarat 1.06%
American Roulette 5.26%
Slot Machines ~15%
Keno ~40%

With all forms of gambling coming with limits, there is no surprise that sports betting follows suit.

Even further, sports betting is just another market that changes the limits based on the status of the player. In casinos, there are high roller rooms, for online casinos, there are varying table limits.

But, sports betting changes unlike these other games. In roulette, the chance of a 0 rolling is always the same. In blackjack, the chances of getting two face cards are always the same.

In sports betting, different factors influence betting lines – media coverage, injury news, practice results, etc. Sportsbooks should limit bettors until the closing line is set.

Once the book has some data on how some are betting and how the expectations are playing out, they should have no fear in opening up limits for everyone.

News tags: James Holzhauer | The Athletic

Michael Molter

Michael began writing as an NBA content writer and has spent time scouting college basketball for Florida State University under Leonard Hamilton and the University of Alabama under Anthony Grant. A graduate of both schools, he covers topics focused on legal sports betting, betting odds, and casino reviews. Michael likes to golf, play basketball, hike, and kayak when not glued to the TV watching NBA games.


Author: Jeffrey Fisher