The Newbie’s Guide to Sports Betting in Arizona

The launch of sports betting in Arizona in September 2021 has exploded. In less than eight weeks, almost $800 million was wagered. The new sector provided Arizona with $15 million in taxes and fees. Arizona beat Virginia’s previous record of the highest revenue in the first 60 days by more than double the numbers.

This article will guide anyone looking to start sports betting, particularly in Arizona. The goal of every punter is to win money from Arizona’s online sportsbooks consistently. After all, most of the $800 million placed on bets were transacted using mobile applications. As a newbie, you need to master two key rules about sports betting.

Sports Betting Twin Golden Rules

  1. Don’t Expect to Win

This rule may sound awkward, but you’d most likely get disappointed if you expect to win every bet you place. The success of places like Vegas is proof that ‘the house’ wins most of the time against bettors.

The professionals behind the odds – those numbers you see while betting- have years of actuarial and probabilistic math experience behind them. Their jobs are to make winning huge amounts of money as hard as possible for you. Sports betting is a multi-billion dollar business because sportsbooks win in the long run against impulsive gamblers.

The first step to beating the bookmakers is not to expect grossly exaggerated winnings. The second step is not to expect winners at all. In essence, training your mind this way allows you to make more informed decisions. It’s akin to performing a task with little to zero pressure. When there’s low pressure, you’ll most likely perform better.

  1. Don’t Bet More than What you can Afford to Lose

Even if you’re betting on a team that’s sure to win, the results of games could turn out differently than expected. Most gamblers wish they hadn’t placed a bet on the losing side.

However, the mindset you should develop is that any bet can go the wrong way, and no single loss should negatively affect you. Betting an amount you can afford to let go will give you the perfect blend of taking sports betting as a profession and a hobby at the same time.

Learning the Most Popular Sports Betting Terminologies

On sports betting forums and chat rooms, you might see terminology you’re not familiar with. Getting acquainted with sports betting jargon by searching Google any time chat room members mention it might make you miss important information. It’s best to get familiar with a couple of them here.

  • Favorites

The favorite side means the side that has the bigger chance of winning. Favorites can be determined from recent performance or the percentage of bets placed on them. Favorites have a (-) symbol beside their names.

  • Underdog

This is the opposite of the favorite team. They’re the less likely side to win and usually have a (+) sign beside their name.

  • Odds

Odds are the mathematical representation of how likely an event will happen. The symbol next to the odds also depicts the favorite or the underdog. For instance, if you see odds of (-130), it means the team has a really good chance of winning the game. If you see odds of (+500) beside a team, it means the team has considerably lower chances of winning the tie.

  • Over/Under

Over/Under translates to a team reaching or not reaching a particular target. For instance, if you bet on a basketball game to be over 54.5 points, it means you win the bet once 55 points are reached. On the other hand, if you bet under 54.5 points, you win the bet if 54.5 points are not reached at the specified period.

  • Live Betting

You have the option of betting during a game. The odds are updated constantly as events occur in the match. The harder the possibility of an event happening, such as a point or goal scored, the higher the odds.

Choosing the Team to Bet on

The best way to bet is to bet on familiar teams or sports. For instance, if you watch the NFL games, you’d like to bet on an NFL team that you follow. Sometimes it seems like a no-brainer to bet on the team with the lowest odds, but you’d have to bet on several teams with lower odds to win something tangible.

The chances of all the teams winning or your wagers getting ticked successfully becomes low as the accumulated odds increase. That’s why it’s best to stick to games and teams you’re sure of.


Since sports betting has been made legal in Arizona, a lot of cash has been wagered. To become a successful bettor, you have to avoid betting huge amounts of money and expect not to win every bet.

Learning the sports betting lingo like odds, favorites, and underdogs early can give you an edge when navigating sportsbook websites. Additionally, placing bets on familiar teams will most likely get you winnings in the long run.

Huynh Nguyen

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