The story is told about a business tycoon whose personal safe was jammed. Unable to open it, he placed an ad in the papers seeking the help of anyone who can safely open the safe. A young man came and offered to open the safe for $100. The tycoon agreed. The young man then took a look at the safe, knocked at a certain area of the door and kicked one side of the safe. To the wonderment of all, the safe opened. The young man then asked for his $100.
“What?” the tycoon asked, “I will pay you $100 when all you did was knock at the door and kick one side of the safe?”
“Sir,” the young man replied, “didn’t we agree to a price of $100? Besides, you did not pay me for knocking at the door and kicking the side of your safe. You paid me because I know where to knock and where to kick the safe.”
That story is repeated countless times every day, not necessarily between a tycoon and a young man, but between a doctor and his patient, a lawyer and his client, a plumber and his customer – any transaction between a professional and a client. Clients usually balk at what they see as the exorbitant fees charged by professionals for seemingly easy work such as prescribing aspirin, signing a legal document, fixing a broken pipe or recommending sports picks. Just like with the story of the safe, people think the job of professionals is easy. What they do not realize is that they are paying for the knowledge of the professional as well as the benefits clients get from the work of the professional.
The same goes through with how clients see sports handicappers. Many will say “I do the same thing these guys do. I read sports mags and surf the Net for the latest in sports news. So why should I pay $150 to subscribe to a package by these handicappers?”
The answer is simple: First, you pay the handicapper so he will do the research for you. Professional sports handicappers do their research as a full-time activity. Hence, they have acquired a vast amount of knowledge in their chosen sport which they use in making their forecast. Second, you pay them in the expectation that their forecasts will turn out correct. Studies show that top-notch handicappers have an average of from 57% to 60% accuracy in calling their games. Good lay bettors, on the other hand, can get it right around 40% to 45% of the time. That’s a world – and hundreds (and possibly, thousands) of dollars – of difference.
To get a better picture of the costs and benefits of getting a handicapper service, let us work on three scenarios:
Scenario 1: The person researches on his own makes betting forecasts by himself. In one week, he wins 5 and loses 7.
Scenario 2: The person uses a handicapper for $150. In one week, he wins 8 and loses 5.
Let us also say that the person is a skilled unionized worker with a salary of $30 per hour. To make our example simple, he makes $100 on each bet and he gets $100 every time he wins a bet. As a self-handicapper (Scenario 1), he spends one hour a day for 5 days in a week researching on the latest in his favorite sport.
Here then is how the cost-and-benefit analyses stack up:
Costs of Handicapping: $150 ($30 hourly rate x5)
Costs of Losses: $700 (7 losses total)
TOTAL COSTS: $850
Total Wins: $500 (5 wins)
NET COSTS / GAIN: – $350
You may be surprised at the big loss the man incurred. What made the loss “big” was the self-handicapping cost that the man imposed on himself. This should really be the case. The person should put an amount for his labor. Making his self-handicapping rate equal to his hourly rate can give us a fair picture of his self-handicapping rate. It’s bad enough if he lost just $200 (7 losses – 5 wins). But it is horrifying if he finds out he is losing more with self-handicapping. The time he spends self-handicapping can be used for other income-generating pursuits.
Costs of Handicapping: $150 (standard handicapper’s rate)
Costs of Losses: $500 (5 games total)
TOTAL COSTS: $650
Total Wins: $800 (8 wins)
NET COSTS / GAIN: + $150
The bettor still pays a $150 handicapping charge. But this time, he pays it to his handicapper. It is not a value he imputes to himself. The winnings he makes is enough to offset his losses and the handicapper service fee. The bettor can make more if he bets bigger amounts in a package – or if he continues betting fir the entire season,
Please note, however, that even the best handicappers can experience a losing streak. No legitimate handicapper will promise guaranteed winning percentage. Good handicappers however can call their games with consistency over an entire season.
The scenarios pictured above are very simple. Yet hopefully it is enough for you to get the drift. Just like the tycoon in the opening story, you pay good money to the man with the knowledge and skill to help you. And, in sports betting, it is the professional sports handicapper.