Sports betting could be the activity of predicting sports results and placing wager around the outcome. The regularity of sports bet upon varies by culture, using the majority of bets being placed on Association Football (Soccer), American Football, Basketball, Baseball, Hockey, Mma, and Boxing at the amateur and professional levels. Sports betting can also extend to non-athletic events, including reality show contests and political elections, and non-human contests like Horse Racing, Greyhound Racing and illegal, underground Dog Fighting.
Sports bettors place their wagers either legally, through a bookmaker/sportsbook, or illegally through privately run enterprises called “bookies”. The definition of book is often a reference to the books used by wagebrokers to monitor wagers, payouts, and debts.
Wagebrokers both legal and illegal make money through a part coming from all money bet, known as a vigorish (vig), juice, rake, or action. Legal sportsbooks take vigorish from bettors of both teams, paying a fantastic bettor a bit under 2/1 in a even contest. Illegal bookies, however, spend the money for winning bettor even money while making the losing bettor give the vigorish exclusively. It must be noted that both bookmakers use other ways to increase profits by enticing bettors with greater winnings at and the higher chances to the bettor (teasers, parlays, adjusting point spreads, etc.).
Many legal sportsbooks are normally found online, operated online from jurisdictions outside of the clients they serve, usually to get around various gambling laws (such as the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act of 2006 in the us) in select markets, including Las Vegas, Nevada, or on gambling cruises through self-serve kiosks. They take bets “up-front”, meaning the bettor must pay the sportsbook before placing the bet. Illegal bookies, due to nature of these business, can operate literally anywhere but only require money from losing bettors, creating the chance of debt on the bookie in the bettor. This produces a variety of other criminal elements, thus furthering their illegality.
Sportsbetting has resulted in a number of scandals in sport, including the 1919 World Series, the alleged (and then admitted) illegal gambling of former MLB player Pete Rose, and former NBA referee Tim Donaghy, affecting the integrity of sports events through various acts including “point shaving” (players affecting the score by missing shots), bad calls from officials at key moments, and overall match fixing (“the fix is in”).