Frank Floor Talk: Book Review — 20/20 Sports Betting: Think Like a Pro Buddy Frank, CDC Gaming Reports · October 19, 2021 at 8:00 am Logan Fields 289 pp. 2020, $26.95, Huntington Press This is one of the best books I have reviewed in months, along with being very timely and importantly relevant to our changing industry. I love sports. But I’ve never had much interest in sports betting, except among friends. Once my professional life began in the casino world, I had even less interest. Simply because (despite Nevada’s former exclusivity) the Sports Books were only slightly more profitable than the snack bar or the bingo parlor. And almost always, the Race Book did better than Sports. If your internal team setting the lines was any good, they kept volatility low and things calm. Online, Mobile and Fantasy sports have changed it all. While the profit margin in sports betting may forever remain low, the volumes are going through the roof. If you want to understand the “whys and hows,” buy this book. If you want to quit your day job and get rich at home, buy this book. If you want to understand why you can’t watch any televised sporting event without a dozen commercials for Draft Kings or Fan Duel, buy this book. And buy it right away. Unlike many gaming titles, this one is up-to-date, relevant and a great read. A few months back I recommended Then One Day by Chris Andrews. I still do. It’s a great backgrounder on traditional casino sportsbooks. It is also entertaining and will give you some historical perspective on the category and the craft of running a book. But 20/20 Sports Betting is completely different, with most of the focus aimed at tomorrow’s new world of sports wagering and how you can (personally) profit. Logan Fields is not only a successful professional gambler, he’s also an excellent storyteller. When you hear his tale of going pro and quitting his 9 to 5 after just betting for four months, you’ll be intrigued. When you learn he did it wagering on golf (????), you’ll be hooked. And that’s even before you hear the stories he tells about betting on J-Lo’s butt; Groundhog Day; Bill Clinton & The Beatles; and Peter Townsend’s windmills (???). The media may follow the extremes of Mattress Mack betting $2 million on the Astros this month to take the World Series, or Derek Stevens betting five figures on every game during one March Madness. Fields will probably never make headlines. He takes a blue-collar approach to wagering, based on solid research, math, money management and a basic understanding of odds. You can use his information to make better bets. There’s not much you can take away from the exploits of Mack and Stevens. There’s no better example of that than his somewhat ironic look about betting errors made by players wagering on the final question on TV’s Jeopardy. This chapter is appropriately titled, “Jeopardy Contestants – Not as Smart as You Think!” Fields even gets the show’s GOAT Ken Jennings to back up his assessment in writing. You’ll also love why Fields thinks contestant James Holzhauer deserves special credit from sports bettors everywhere. There are dozens and dozens of detailed descriptions of winning bets, and why they were successful. Almost all of them involve taking advantage of small errors the books made in setting the lines for a variety of reasons. Most involve some math and good research on everything from weather and injuries to locations and psychology. Regrettably, for each of these past wins, Fields explains that the loophole he used is now closed, and that those opportunities no longer exist. But at the same time, he explains that by using the basic principles he exploited, there will always be future opportunities to make profitable wagers. The same boom in sports betting that is now producing the volumes to make the segment profitable for operators will also present new opportunities, he explains, to spot small trends and more weak lines to make your personal wagering more profitable. I’ll add the tip that the best sports bet you can make today is to buy this book. And soon. You can find it on Amazon and other sites online for just under $27. But why not support Huntington Press and buy it from them directly? They are the leading publisher of gaming-related books and deserve our patronage.