Sports Betting vs. Poker

Katerina Gadzheva
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Sports Betting vs Poker
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  1. Bookmakers that Offer Poker
  2. Sports Betting or Poker
  3. Poker Benefits
  4. Sports Betting Benefits
  5. Time and Investment
  6. Poker Returns
  7. Sports Betting Returns
  8. Poker Downsides
  9. Similarities
  10. Differences
  11. Final Verdict

It is hardly surprising that all the best online betting sites now offer a whole array of betting facilities, including sports betting and poker. There are so many different options for you to have fun and, if luck is on your side, to make some returns too. Alongside the core product of their sports betting facilities, bookmakers offer virtual sports, casino games, both computerised and live, as well as bingo, poker, scratchcards and lotteries. In short, when it comes to betting, they’ve got every angle covered.

Gamble ResponsiblyDisclaimer: This article compares two forms of gambling. We do not recommend any one of them as a better alternative. Be responsible and make sure you limit yourself when gambling. begambleaware.org

How Likely are You to Find Bookmakers that Offer Poker?

Most punters know that sports betting sites are literally flooding the Internet so finding bookies with best odds on the market isn’t that hard a task. Actually, there are plenty to pick and choose from, which gives sports betting punters the edge.

As far as online poker is concerned, though, there are not many platforms out there that offer great quality to its players. An excellent place to start is undoubtedly bet365 that apart from a fantastic poker platform, provides a very generous welcome bonus for new members.

Another alternative, especially suitable for recreational poker players and those of you who have just ventured into the world of online poker, is Bwin that has a top-notch poker platform that is easy to download or access directly through your phone online.

Last but not least, we do recommend you try Tiger Gaming Poker and their Poker Signup Offer if you have more experience and are ready to go pro.


Why Opt for Sports Betting or Poker

Of all the gambling and betting possibilities open to you online, two give you a real chance to win in the long term and those two are sports betting and poker. If you play casino games like roulette, slots or blackjack, or alternatively you give online bingo or scratchcards a try, you can win – and sometimes win big – in the short term. When luck is with you, these games can be enormous fun and also deliver some really tidy wins. But in the long term, these games will always favour the bookies – they are mathematically designed that way.

In contrast, both sports betting and poker at least give the punter a chance to beat the bookies. That is because both of these methods of gambling are dependent on the skill, ability, knowledge and experience of the punter. There is much debate over whether poker is a game of skill or a game of chance, but in our opinion there is no debate. Poker is by and large a game of skill, albeit one in which luck can play a part.

Benefits of Poker

That means that whilst a bad player can beat a good player some of the time, over the long term, the better player will win. Because of that, poker can be hugely rewarding for those who possess the requisite skills and dedication.

Benefits of Sports Betting

Similarly, whilst sports betting for most people will involve a lot of luck and should be considered a fun hobby, rather than a way to invest, for some people it can be rewarding, even in the long term and even when bad luck is taken into account. While the bookies shape the odds to favour themselves, a shrewd punter can find the value and overcome this disadvantage to beat them consistently.

Betting on sports and other events such as politics or the outcome of TV shows can be better, and poker, too, offers the chance for long-term gain; but which is better? Well, there is no simple answer in truth, and it will depend on your relative ability in both, but here we take a look at some of the pros and cons of both betting on sport and playing online poker.


Time and Investment

How rewarding either sports betting or poker will be may well depend on how much time and effort you can invest. The size of your bankroll is key in both spheres of gambling and naturally how much retunrs you can make will depend on what bankroll you have to start with.

In both sports betting and poker, you can gradually build up your bank, and this is also a great way to ensure that you do indeed have the required skills necessary to succeed. For those without a significant bankroll, poker may be the better option, all things being equal because it offers players the chance to win some astronomical sums without actually risking all that much.

How to Win at Poker?

The pinnacle of the game is the World Series of Poker Main Event and that has frequently served up a prize of more than $8m to the winner over the last 10 years or so, with a whopping $12m in 2006 to the appropriately named Jamie Gold.

You won’t see too many prizes at that level and equally, landing such a payday, when around 8,000 people enter, isn’t exactly a walk in the park. Even so, much smaller tournaments still offer some huge prizes relative to the buy-ins, with satellite events offering an even cheaper (or sometimes even free) route into these potentially lucrative competitions.

How to Win at Sports Betting?

To win such amounts betting on sports, you would either need to stake ludicrously huge sums or go on an incredible streak of winners. However, whilst poker might have the upper hand in this regard, there is no escaping the fact that playing poker often takes a long time.

In contrast, while sports betting may require a lot of research and a lot of time watching games, which is akin to learning and practicing at poker, once the bet is placed it can be left alone. There is hardly any time needed to physically place the bets and nor is it necessary to watch the contest.


Main Downsides of Poker

Leaving aside the hours, weeks, months and years needed to master the game, the tournaments themselves are often long, drawn-out affairs. There are speed and turbo events, but lots and lots of online and real-world poker competitions last several hours. Games usually take three hours, but some might go on for five hours or even longer.

That’s a big disadvantage to poker because in smaller tournaments you could finish in the top places and yet still find yourself getting a very poor hourly rate. Even leaving aside the way this limits one’s earning potential, many people just cannot spare the necessary hours from their busy lives. Or, if they can, they cannot guarantee that they will be free to give a tournament their all for such an extended period without family, work or other commitments calling.


Poker and Sports Betting – Common Ground

Sports betting or poker

Despite these differences, in actual fact, playing online poker and wagering on sports have lots in common with each other.

  • Discipline & Dedication
    Both need great discipline and despite people thinking they are easy ways to have the edge, both require a lot of dedication and hard work in order to make a sustained returns. They are far, far from easy and in truth, making some returns in the long-term from either will not be possible for the majority of people.
  • Sobriety of Mind
    Another thing the two have in common is that neither should be attempted when drunk, tired, upset, angry or otherwise emotional, as it is all too easy to make mistakes or take on bets that you shouldn’t. It’s crucial not to chase losses and go full tilt, be that betting on a game of tennis or at the poker table.
  • Control over Your Backroll
    As alluded to earlier, in both these gambling activities starting small and building up your bank is a wise move. Another way in which sports betting and poker are alike is that a sound understanding of maths and in particular, the probability is crucial to success.

Sports Betting VS Poker – Main Differences

The two activities do differ somewhat in this regard, however, in that while a sports punter can assess the stats at leisure, someone playing poker needs to grasp the odds and probabilities almost instantly.

It is also the case with both that you don’t always need to beat everyone to win. In online poker, selecting the tables and tournaments to play can be one of the most important factors in your profitability. You don’t need to be the best poker player in the world, just the best – or even one of the best – at the table.

When it comes to having the edge from betting on sport, you don’t always have to win and nor do you always have to know everything. You can pick and choose your battles (bets), targeting the times when the bookies have made an error by mispricing an event. There may be other times when the bookies have the odds right, but the market – the masses of everyday punters – has incorrectly caused the odds to shift, offering value to the savvy punter prepared to go against the grain.


Final Verdict

It really isn’t possible to say that either poker or sports betting is more lucrative than the other per se. Both should be seen as paid-for hobbies by most people, but equally it is true that for a small number, success and solid returns are achievable.

Online poker is undoubtedly harder to make a difference from than it used to be, largely due to the rise in poker ‘bot’ software and other technological developments. But such changes and increasing numbers of shrewd punters have also impacted the rewarding aspect of sports betting too.

Ultimately the returns you make from either activity will depend on your own ability and your odds of succeeding in either will very much rely on where your passion lies and the skills and talents you possess. In addition, which is better for you will further depend on how you want to, and are able to, structure your time and how much of your life you can commit to success.


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