Sports betting involves placing a wager on the outcome of a sporting event. It can be as simple as picking the winner of a game or as complex as placing a bet on how many points a team will win by. In order to make a bet, one party must provide the odds and another must agree to place a wager. The payout for winning a bet is determined by the amount of money put up, as well as the odds at the time the bet was placed.
The popularity of sports betting is fueled by a growing acceptance of gambling, intense media coverage of sporting events, and emerging technologies that make it easier to place bets. Wagers can be made at home, in casinos or racetracks, over the Internet, and even via cellular phone services. Americans can also find a variety of sports wagering options at bars and restaurants that feature multiple television sets tuned to different sports.
To make money in sports betting, you must be able to identify opportunities that offer +EV. A good way to do this is to look for underdogs in popular sports with lower than expected lines. A popular team might be overhyped in the market, and this can lead to an overreaction in their odds. This can create value for the bettor who weighs all available factors and data analysis tools. For example, NHL road underdogs who play their backup goalie in the first game of a back-to-back are more likely to cover the puckline than teams that start their regular goalie.