Placing my bets on the New Jersey sports gambling craze
Dear John: Legal betting isn’t so good for any serious gambler who mostly wins.
I did approximately 1,500 college basketball bets this winter/spring using picks from an analytics service that I paid for. These bets were typically between $200 to $500 each, not counting the 10 percent (sometimes 5 percent, sometimes 15 percent) bookmaker’s cut.
I won about 56 percent of the bets, which meant I was modestly profitable. I was up a net of $3,500 after putting almost $15,000 into my FanDuel account.
Don’t get me wrong, it was nice to win. But all those bets took a lot of time and, yeah, there was no guarantee that one would win after making 15 to 20 $550 or $242 bets on a typical Saturday.
And federal and NJ taxes will eat up over $1,000 of these winnings.
So that was my NJ “legal” sports betting adventure. I didn’t get much thrill from the action and financially, mowing lawns might have been more profitable after taxes.
Of course, losing would be even worse, as gambling losses can hardly ever be deducted from one’s income. D.R.
Dear D.R.: I’m guessing you don’t have a job.
Thanks for sharing your experience. My own betting experience is in the $10-to-$20 range once every month or so.
But, to be honest, I think having a few bucks on teams that I don’t care about makes the games much more interesting. I hardly fall asleep for more than a half-hour in those circumstances.
Anyway, keep betting. New Jersey needs your money.
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